How do you tell someone that you just want to be left alone
without making them feel like you don't care about them?
'The plight of the introvert in an extrovert's clothing'
I am, by nature, an introvert. The role I play in life is often that of an extrovert (at work, for Scouts, in family gatherings, as a parent, etc.) Balancing these two different styles is something I have become fairly comfortable with. Occasionally though, too much time in an extroverted role can snap me back to my natural introverted tendencies like a broken rubber band; I literally snap.
I love my wife and kids. I care deeply about other friends, family, co-workers, and many people in my life. But when this 'snap' happens, I find myself incapable of overcoming the deep feelings of wanting to be left entirely alone. No talking to me. No touching me. No 'hang out in the same room but pretend like we don't need to interact with each other' either.
I. Just. Shut. Down.
Fellow introverts will understand my reaction and are already saying in their minds 'oh yeah! I totally get that way!' But extroverts out there could be thinking I am just selfish or antisocial. I'm really not. In fact, most people who know me would be surprised to know that I am, by nature, introverted. This is because I have worked hard to cultivate strategies that allow me to act like an extrovert in social situations. But it does have limitations, mainly in duration.
So in the future, I am going to refer to this blog post for anyone who tries to interact with me in any of these rare times when I 'snap' and I hope it will save their tender feelings. The love is still there, but I cannot express it and you do not need to coax it out of me - that will only make it worse. Give me a little time and I'll be back, good as new. No, you didn't do something wrong. No, I am not mad at you. No, I don't need anything right now - except to be alone for a while. That's all.
Song Of The Day:
I think most people know well of The Piano Guys, but the cellist's name is Steven Sharp Nelson and one of his versions of the equally well-known Debussy compositions is the song for today's post. Some folks first heard "Clair de Lune" when it was used in the popular movie Ocean's 11, which is great but also sad (because everyone should hear great music without it having to be popular). This piece of music perfectly captures, for me anyway, the somber solitude that I sometimes need to get 'right' again. I love how the music is uplifting in a slow, building way, because that is how my alone time works, when I get it.