Yesterday, Adele threw down some real truths: she doesn’t like touring, and she might never do it again. Plus, she announced it with a letter, making it feel even realer.
“Touring is a peculiar thing, it doesn’t suit me particularly well,” she reflected. “I’m a real homebody and I get so much joy in the small things. Plus, I’m dramatic and have a terrible history of touring.”
She continued: “I only ever did this tour for you and to hopefully have an impact on you the way that some of my favourite artists have had on me. And I wanted my final shows to be in London because I don’t know if I’ll ever tour again and so want my last time to be at home.”
And, like, fair. If Adele doesn’t want to tour, she shouldn’t have to. I wouldn’t want to: some of us just want to stay home.
For the record, I know there’s a difference between wanting to hang out at home for an evening and having the pressure to travel the world and perform your art. I also know there’s a real zest for introversion on the internet lately, with a lot of us categorizing ourselves as either an introvert or an extrovert, and using either title to justify the way we tend to interact. So I say this as a grown-ass woman who is tired and alive and a combination of both descriptors: sometimes going out is the worst. And there is a freedom in knowing you don’t want to do something.
My favourite people are the ones who are honest; the women who know their limits and have no interest in appeasing others if it means putting their mental/emotional/physical health on the line. I love Adele for many reasons (because we’re clearly close and personal friends), but her authenticity is the clincher: she knows who she is, she knows what she wants to do, and she isn’t going to do anything because she’s “supposed” to. Why would she? Who does she need to impress?
The thing is, you don’t need to be Adele to assert those boundaries. I remember this time last year, actively wrestling with the idea that if I didn’t go out and do the things (ALL THE THINGS!) I’d be missing out on . . . something. I’d be wasting my time or my life or laying the foundation for looking back and realizing I’d spent too many years not actively engaging. But I was also tired and anxious and lived on ginger tablets and Imodium because I was such a stressed-out disaster. Which also meant that when I went out, I wasn’t exactly having a blast: most of the time I was tuckered out and wanted to stay home and read, but felt like I was wasting the day and/or not cool as a person (woof) if I stayed in.
Which is, to put it plainly, bullshit. First, no one is looking at any of us enough to tag us with a title because we weren’t seen out and about on a Friday night. (Honestly, my nightmare 90% of the time is running into someone I didn’t make plans with, but now have to make small talk with because neither of us were expecting to see each other and now we have to act like this is fine and we weren’t in the middle of serious conversations with other people.) (Also, I am a Seinfeld episode on my best days.) Second, who cares? Staying in rules. And if you don’t want to go out on a beautiful Thursday for BBQ on a patio, that’s terrific — hang out and watch Netflix or nap or go to the mall by yourself. Anybody who weighs in on your choices can go to the devil.
So look, I am here for Adele not wanting to tour anymore. Touring sounds terrible. Going out two nights in a row sometimes sounds terrible — so imagine having to entertain thousands of people every night, knowing they paid upwards of hundreds of dollars to see you. No thank you. So instead, I will dub Adele my patron saint of Doing-Whatever-The-Hell-We-Want. You want to go out? Go out. You want to stay in? Stay in. You want to abandon the press cycle the music industry’s been embracing for what feels like centuries? Dare to dream. You want to bid your adieu in a handwritten note? Bold. You want to watch Netflix instead of going to somebody’s birthday party? Honestly, I hear you. You want to politely decline your pal’s wedding after agreeing to be a bridesmaid?
Okay, admittedly, too bad — it’s too far along, and you really do have to be a bridesmaid. I’m sorry. But next time, remember: you don’t have to say yes.