Every personality test I’ve ever taken has given me the same result, and it must be true with the sheer number I’ve taken. I’m exactly in the center of the scale between introversion and extroversion. It’s common knowledge at this point that the difference between the two is how an individual “recharges their batteries.” I always believed I was as introverted as you can get until I took those tests. They opened a door that I had previously though didn’t exist.
I never really cared about it until I got married. Eric is an extrovert with just a hint of introvert in there. I didn’t realize that until month 2 of our marriage. He’s charming at social gatherings, laughs without restraint at jokes while were out and about, and he’s almost always bored and feels the need to do something.
It puts this weird strain on our relationship, I’ve noticed. He wants to go to people’s houses for dinner, he doesn’t mind when company arrives at our home, and he’s not bothered by interacting with people at parties. I on the other hand am easily exhausted when having to deal with people.
Just this past weekend we went to a party with his firehouse buddies and their families. Had it not been for some Southern Comfort I would have been completely overwhelmed in a manner of minutes. I didn’t know the vast majority of those in attendance and I clutched my purse to my chest for comfort for the first few hours. Eric was continually getting up and talking to people, he wasn’t afraid to ask for food before it was served, he seemingly felt 100% comfortable. I was silent for most of the night and no one paid attention to me, though that didn’t stop me from thinking that they would at a moment’s notice.
Why am I telling you all of this? Well, this morning I woke up with the strangest feeling. I actually wanted to leave my house and hang out with my friends. I’ve recently clung on to a friend of mine’s D&D campaign and I go to her house to play every Wednesday. Often times I don’t want to go because it involves leaving the house and interacting with other humans, but today was different. I felt that glimmer of myself come back again that wanted to go to sleepovers in the middle of the week in high school or make spontaneous plans to mountain climb at college. Like I said, I’ve always thought I was an introvert, but I love making plans spur of the moment if I’m surrounded by people I love. And for sure, I’ll have conversations for hours on end if I don’t have to worry about making an excuse to leave just because I’m anxious. I make myself go every Wednesday that I’m able because I know once I get there, I have an awesome time, I know it’s important for me to have someone to physically talk to, and I know I need to get out of the house once in a while with someone other than my husband. But today I felt that piece of me come back to life that isn’t scared and doesn’t want to waste away in front of a computer for the rest of her life.
Recently I’ve become even more introverted due to the fact that I have no reason to leave the camper during the day. I sit here all day long and truly enjoy being alone. However, I think my problem is the people I’m around. Here’s a prime example: Just the other day I received a phone call from my D&D buddies and they asked if I wanted to go out for coffee. I agreed and wound up spending the rest of the day with them totally out of the blue. But, just this past weekend, some of Eric’s family showed up at the campsite unannounced and it seemed to hit me like a bag of bricks. I felt light headed and I didn’t want to get out of bed. Thankfully I was dealing with some back pain previous to their arrival and was already bedridden, so I had an excuse. Eric poked his head inside to tell me they were here, then stared at me for a second. I replied “Do I have to come out there?” He thankfully said no, and told them I wasn’t feeling well. The only difference between these two instances are the people involved. Since leaving all of my friends at college, It’s been difficult for me to branch out. It feels like Eric has dibs on his friends already and I don’t have a means to hang out with my family or friends whenever I want because of the car situation.
It all just makes me think. Your body changes every seven years. You become a totally new person in the physical sense. Am I becoming a new, sadder version of myself? Or is this how life is going to work from now on?