I accepted years ago that I am different, and honestly, I have no problem with it. I yearn for quiet, for home, for steady. I find my greatest peace in silence, which is funny considering my job. Being a teacher…well, there is no silence. Ever. Not ever…and if there is, you better figure out what’s going on.
For a very long time, I battled my oddness and wondered what was wrong with me. I forced myself into uncomfortable situations and pretended to be someone I wasn’t. To say that was exhausting is an understatement. And then…then one day I read a wonderful article on another blogger’s site about introverts and extroverts and people who fall somewhere in the middle of the two. Of course I’d heard of it before…but honestly, I never paid a whole lot of attention to what it truly meant.
So, after that one day, that one article, I began accepting myself for exactly who I am. I began saying no. No excuses. No pretending. But still, I felt alone. Most of the time, I felt like I was the only homebody in the world.
Then this magical thing happened, and as much as Facebook annoys me most of the time, I found other introverts on the site. I discovered that the world is full of people who thrive on reading and writing, who become whole again by having time to recover from the over-stimulation of the world by simply being at home.
In the past two weeks, I’ve also had two women…two strong, beautiful, competent, polite, active women…tell me that they battle with some of the same issues. One talked about the panic she feels in certain situations, the other, her need to disconnect from the world after a long day at work. Both of these incredible women also said that they felt alone…as if they were the only people feeling that way. I chuckled and told them to join my club.
It all had me wondering….
Does the stress of work and everyday life make our tendencies worse? Do people become radically different due to the hardships of uncontrollable situations…like work, children, dealing with the public? Do we have to have more silence to balance the scales? (Or more action, for the extroverts, to balance the scales?) OR would we simply be the way we are regardless of life’s situations?
For me, I know stress changes my ability to handle life. Stress drains me like the sudden gushing of water going down a drain. It makes my introverted tendencies worse. So, I refuel. Each weekend, I do my best to recharge my soul so I can delve into another week. For me, there’s nothing like being home with my kids and hubby and our pets. Nowhere else do I feel as safe and calm and comfortable.
What about you? Do you feel better staying in or going out? How do you refuel?