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There’s a world where I can go
And tell my secrets to

We grew up with the threat of being sent to our rooms. Even with the threat of our rooms, we used the time as a way to be angry, happy, lovesick, sad, hopeful, and all of the other emotions associated with being a kid. You had solitude, which was your parents’ goal, but it really brought your thoughts into focus. It was a time of reflections and redirections. I don’t recall any specific trip to my room but I vividly remember the dreams and ideas that came from those times. I remember wanting to be an astronaut, actor, singer, and the owner of my own place where people couldn’t tell me what to do anymore.

I remember signing sad songs, happy songs, and especially love songs in my room. All of my dreams were clear and exact in my room and there was no one to stand in the way. In my room, all things were possible and nothing was unattainable. Most importantly, in my room, the only limits were the ones I placed on myself and I had very few limits or restrictions.

In my room In this world I lock out
All my worries and my fears

I was safe in my room and nothing could reach me. Whatever troubles that may have happened during the day disappeared at the threshold of my room.  There were times when my room was a shared experience but I was still able to find solitude and sometimes my “room” was in different locations. There were times when the school library served this purpose. In college, the third-floor study rooms served as a great area of solitude and I remember spending time listening to my radio with an earplug. I hid in my own world and was a million miles from Greeley, Colorado. I found my time in college really started the transition out of my “room” to the world at large.

Do my dreaming and my scheming lie awake and pray
Do my crying and my sighing laugh at yesterday

Now it’s dark and I’m alone
But I won’t be afraid

My ideas and inventions could save the world if only people would listen to them. Through all of my years, I still have a part of me that thinks he can save the world and has the answers to all the problems of the world. I love to share my crazy ideas and it has given me the reputation of someone who can come with a solution to many problems, (whether they need solving or not.) I loved the art of the “plan” and the joy of fulfilling the plan.

Recent generations have a different view of their rooms and the importance they can play. Many of my students talk about their rooms like it was a “command center” and view it is a connection to the world not isolation from the world. I sometimes wonder where they have solitude and if they ever enjoy the quiet. As a result many children never are alone and never have time to think or contemplate their world. They spend time connected to others in an electronic way and never realize who they are and tend to become what others think of them. Even though they are never alone I suspect they are lonelier because they do not embrace the personal connection with others, Going to school was often the connection that I needed to others and now as I look down at our commons, the bulk are on devices and even sharing things across their table instead of talking across their table.

I love my technology and I would miss it but I find myself increasingly frustrated by my connection to the technology instead of others. I am starting to find myself going to talk to people instead of sending an email. I miss having conversations and I feel sad for children who haven’t really had the experience of conversation. I laugh when I hear my Interns having these silly philosophical discussions but I know that it is the art of conversation that they are developing that far too few people embrace. I remember long conversations into the wee hours of the night over silly stuff but we developed the ability to engage in conversation and dialogue.

Do my crying and my sighing, laugh at yesterday

I hope that everyone has a place of solitude and reflection. My wife finds it in her quilt room and I find it on the back patio with our firepit. I wish for everyone the time to refresh and rejuvenate as we prepare for the next day. I wish for people to not lose the value of true “me time” and embrace the opportunities we have to take time “In My Room.”

In My Room

There’s a world where I can go

And tell my secrets to

In my room

In my room In this world I lock out

All my worries and my fears

In my room

In my room

Do my dreaming and my scheming lie awake and pray

Do my crying and my sighing laugh at yesterday

Now it’s dark and I’m alone

But I won’t be afraid

In my room

In my room

Songwriters: THORPE, BILLY

Post Author: Randy Mills