If there is one thing I can admit about myself, it’s that I’m terrible at responding to personal messages. Not the teacher emails or work related messages, but the social communication type of messages. Whether it be texts, phone calls, voicemails, Facebook messages, I fail … and I admit it. It’s like I have a phobia to the phone ringing. It’s a personal flaw I suppose. I have tried to figure myself out to relieve my own guilt. I often think to myself, ‘Just respond. Get it done!’ then I don’t.
Sometimes it’s because I’m an over-thinker. Ever heard the term “analysis paralysis?” Sometimes a simple answer back to someone isn’t good enough. I overthink it, push it to the side, then don’t get back to them. Sometimes when so many days have passed without responding, it then seems ridiculous to answer, so I let it go. Then the guilt sets in that I never answered. I’ve been called out on Facebook when I haven’t answered a private message in a timely manner. I’ve received texts asking if I’m still alive. Some friends have fallen to the wayside because they’re tired of the unanswered phone calls. Sometimes I don’t understand it myself. Sometimes being true to your own nature can be hard.
You see, I’m an introvert.
I always have been. An introvert AND an over-thinker! Sometimes, I think that can be crippling. I was reading an article the other day about introverts and it said:
“Many introverts have learned to cope with constant overstimulation by putting up a wall. This leads people to believe that introverts are cold or standoffish, but this is not our true nature. The innate qualities that most introverts share are a love of introspection, a need for solitude and a slower, more focused communication style.”
This … this is me. I put up a wall. I am okay with solitude. I don’t need constant communication with friends and people. Is that so wrong? A social butterfly, I am not. I don’t do it to be rude. At times, I’m just overwhelmed by the chaos of my day.
Sometimes I’m just tired … and my plate is full.
Sometimes I just need space and I selfishly take it. Some days, small talk is just not for me. It doesn’t at all mean that I love my friends any less. When I am around them, I love to talk for hours. Person to person. In fact, I can be a motormouth, who often sticks her foot in her mouth from saying too much (social awkwardness?!).
I value my girlfriends and thankful they know me for who I am. But the truth of the matter is, when I leave a social situation, I crawl back into my shell of solitude that I’m perfectly okay with.
I also find that I’m happy with my people.
My people being my husband and children. Four children brings a lot of chaos and constant communication. A lot of demands from me. I’m constantly giving. Giving all of myself to them. Sometimes I think there isn’t much left of me after that. Do I give too much of myself to them leaving not enough room for friends? Maybe so … but I’m happy. I’m happy where I am. I’m happy to spend Friday and Saturday nights at home, all curled up in the living room, with just them.
My husband and I have turned down so many social events because we are happy with just being. Just being home with our crew. I feel like it’s become a lesson to my children as well. Learning how to just be. We don’t need “spend the night company” every weekend and constant playdates to keep us happy and entertained (the pains of having an introverted mother?). We love rainy days of all being stuck in the house together. They value family movie nights and savor playing games together. They truly enjoy each others company. I think my hope is that in years to come when they are all spread out and leading their own lives and my plate is less full, that my friends are still there … waiting patiently for me. Cause Lord knows, they will still be waiting for me to respond to that text!