Wednesday, February 16, 2011

The still small voice

People who knew me in elementary and high school would say I was shy. People who know me in my 'teacher' mode might see me as extroverted. I am not.
Taking a Myers Briggs tests years ago confirmed what I always knew. I am an introvert. I first realized this at a dinner party about ten years ago. It was a greek restaurant, and, you probably guessed it, the belly-dancer showed up.
I hate belly dancers, mostly because they come over to your table and try to get you to dance too.
Three women at my table leapt up and starting dancing with her. There I was, luckily sitting with my back against a wall on the bench seat, with two male colleagues on either side of me. I grabbed the arm of each of them and whispered urgently that they were not to move until the dancer had vacated the premises! Thank God they complied. It was really my first inkling that I am indeed an introvert....those three women dancing on the floor out there? Extroverts!
This is not to say that I can't be funny and entertaining at parties. If I have a good yarn to spin, then I will spin away.....but mostly at parties, and gatherings, I sit and watch and think that everyone is having a much better time than I am. Everyone seems to be being greeted by long lost friends. Everyone seems to be having a much more interesting conversation than the one I am having, or not having.
Me? I like dinners with one person, maybe two. I love to be around people who are entertaining. I love to watch the interactions of others. I don't like to be watched.
I am not an academic. I try to read academic journals, articles, but I can't follow it, can't quote it, can't really get into it. I just know what I know. I used to try to pretend to be an academic but it was too stressful. I now tell people, out loud, "I am not an academic", just so there are no surprises, or disappointments.

When something isn't right in my life, or in the lives of people close to me, my heart hurts. This isn't metaphoric. It actually begins to ache. I have learned in my life to listen to my heart when it aches. It is never wrong. When my heart aches then I know there is something I must say. I know that I have to say it. It always turns out to be that which had to be said. You can imagine, for me, and perhaps for those around me, this can be a curse, and perhaps sometimes a blessing.

My heart also aches when I stand between two people who are in conflict with each other. It doesn't have to be spoken. My heart knows when conflict is there. It took me years to protect my heart from issues that weren't mine. Years.

So I have to protect my heart. That is really all you need to know about me. I am an introvert, and an intuitive, and I have to protect my heart.

1 comment:

  1. From one introvert to another, I read an article in Psychology Today that 50% of the population is like us - that surprised me but totally makes sense!


Add your thoughts....join the conversation.