I have to admit that "adulting" is really hard work. As a working mother, I am coming home at the end of the day exhausted, overwhelmed and drained. Everyone around me just told me that it was a completely normal feeling to have and need to understand that "this is just how life is." There was more to this feeling. I came home from being a smiley optimistic Mrs. Kayla from Preschool to just coming home, cooking dinner spending time with my kids and feeling this mental exhaustion. When the weekend came, I would avoid eye contact with people and look down as I walk. I would sit cross legged and wait for someone to ask me a question or converse with me in some possible way. I began to feel like those people hated me and excluded me because I was this rude woman who didn't want to make a conversation.
One day, I had an epiphany driving in the car with my brother on the phone. He started to explain to me the idea that I myself may be an introvert. An Introvert? Really? I was taught by society that introverts were not "people persons." They were lonely, quiet, rude, socially awkward people. To make it in this world, you have to extroverted. While having conversations with my doctor about the anxiety issues and being mentally exhausted, I was told that yes…I am an introvert.
I discovered that my problem is that I'm at a job all day that requires me to speak to other adults, direct them and the children, while always keeping a smile on my face. I came to find out from my doctor that I was experiencing social anxiety and that the best thing I could do was come home and find time alone to recollect my thoughts. When the doctor explained this was the best remedy for my anxiety, I laughed because I have two children and a husband, and even a dog, that needs my attention throughout the day. In order to do what the doctor suggested I'd have to hide in the bathroom pretending to use it just to get a moment of peace.
After that diagnoses I did what I do best. I did some research on the subject and made a list. (By the way, I LOVE to make lists). I decided to embrace my newly realized personality trait and created a list that consists of goals that I would like to achieve in order to help accept myself as an introvert.
Here's my list:
1. Enjoy more alone time.
- Having some alone time helps me recharge my brain and really meditate on my day and what to do next time to make it better. I even give myself praise and words of encouragement in my mind on the good things I did that day. It also affords me time to run away into my imagination and read my books. My books are always calling to me and reading them really gives me an escape from reality.
2. Find more creative outlets.
- I chose writing in my journal and on my blog page. I feel that writing out what I'm thinking is a sort of free therapy to me. I can save some entries to reflect on my life and see what progress I have made or even some things I should improve on. Blogging helps me reach out to those people who are need of finding a safe place for themselves to understand that they are not alone in whatever issues that they are facing.
- I choose to color because coloring focuses on relaxing my mind and body from a stressful day. Adult coloring books are great for those really wanting to relax. I have collected two coloring books, and I am looking forward to the Lisa Frank Coloring Book!
- I also chose photography as an outlet because it challenges me to find beauty in everything. I mostly love to take pictures of the Cinderella Castle and other remarkable things at Disney World and post them to my Instagram page.
3. Know that making time for yourself is not a selfish act!
-This is a big one for me because, let's face it I am the Matriarch of my family. Mommy knows best in the house and everyone flocks to mommy to help with whatever first world problem there is while daddy is standing right next to them. I try not to beat myself up too harshly if I say to myself “I deserve me time!” I do deserve a small portion of time throughout the day for myself because it is the only way my brain allows me recoup.
I know that as time ebbs on and I continue to find myself I will continue to add on to this list. My hope is that in listing all of my introverted quirks I will eventually turn this list into a set of goals that will require me to say "hello" to a stranger on the street or even make eye contact with everyone I come in contact with in my daily life and work surroundings. 'Til then, I will hide in my bathroom hoping that my kids can not find me so I can enjoy my much earned five minutes of peace.
Sending Pixie Dust your Way,