Ok, friends. I’m going to put the toys aside for a minute to have a chat about a problem, er, maybe it’s not a problem per se, but a noticeable phase I’ve been going through, recently.
I call it the introvert and chill phase.
Over the past few years, I’ve noticed a significant change in my social life and the way I interact with others–specifically when it comes to meeting new people. It’s incredibly hard for me. It’s like I’m going through the robotic motions of a conversation. *Bee bop boo* Oh, I know the weather is beautiful. *Bee bop boo* Did you see that sky yesterday? Talk about blue. *Bee bop boo*
I mean, don’t get me wrong, I care about everyone in the sense that I wish every person good health and happiness in life. But, it’s just that I really don’t care what juice cleanse you’re on, Cynthia and no, I don’t want to try it, and while we’re at it no, I don’t have the energy to meet other toddler moms on a health craze. I like to eat tater tots by myself or with people I know who won’t judge how many I can stuff in my mouth at one time.
It seems daunting and time-consuming to form new relationships, and to be honest–least of my priorities at the moment. And, this is all very new to me, because it’s not at ALL how I used to be.
Social butterfly past
Anyone who knew me in high school or college would say I was very outgoing and enthusiastic. I would talk to anyone and everyone. I was extremely bubbly and social. A regular Chatty Cathy, if you will. I couldn’t get enough of people. Yes, Cynthia, let’s try that new juice cleanse! Or better yet, I’ll host a juice cleanse party. Bring 50 of your closest friends I don’t know!
I relished in any opportunity to talk with others and make new friends. My social calendar, while never super ostentatious, (I’m a dive bar and flats kind of girl) was always full. Something to do, someone to see. And, I loved it!
But now, I feel like my enthusiasm for meeting others and being social (outside of my closest circle) has taken a direct missile hit into oblivion. It’s not that I don’t like people or think I am better than anyone (hello, I can barely eat a meal without the evidence all over my shirt – lame.) It’s that it feels so difficult to invest my time and energy talking to someone that I might not see again in the foreseeable future.
And, usually, while I’m talking to someone new, I think about how I could be resting on my couch, reading a book or watching Netflix. Which is super boring, right? But that’s what I crave these days. Turning the next page in my book is more exciting than turning up at some social event where talking now feels like an effort. Turn up for what?
For me, I’m not sure if this “introvert and chill phase” is the result of having kids and therefore my free time to socialize is non-existent. And when I do get time, I’d rather relax and rejuvenate alone. Maybe…
Who else is with me?
But, I do know I’m not entirely alone in this. So, for those who are in this same phase, why do you think you feel this way?
Is this feeling just a natural phenomenon of aging? Do we become less social as we grow more gray hairs? (picture me posing this question looking out my window with my laptop while Mr. Big’s limo waits on the city sidewalk)Is it that we know what we want? I’m married. Have a kid. I like tater tots. Dislike juice cleanses (sorry friends, but it’s the truth) Love my people, and that’s that?
Perhaps, it’s technology? Has the digital age caused us to become a slave to the screen? Do we see what people are doing on social media and feel no need to interact with them in person?
Or, maybe the effort of putting on pants and pretending to look good is just too damn daunting at our age? God, don’t even get me started on pants. I swear if my clothing isn’t 100% cotton and/or insanely stretchy than I’m out! Most of my pants have a band these days because buttons are truly the devil’s work.
Honestly, whatever is going on, I’d like to think it is just this stage in our lives, and we’ll move on to the next phase. The Turn Up and Chat phase, if you will.
Plans for the next social phase
If I know anything, I know life is hard. Working, parenting, getting ahead, aging–it’s exhausting. And, if we can find a way to simplify our lives, I’d venture to say our social life is one of the easiest to control. At least it is for me!
BUT, when I picture myself as an older woman, I picture myself, yes, with a lot of books and coffee, and I picture a lot of time volunteering and traveling. And most importantly, I foresee time with old friends and new friends, too.
On a side note, if there is such a thing as a lodge for women (where you sit around and booze and reminisce) then count me in– and let me know–in like 20 years.
Oh, and brunch. I picture so much time for brunch in my future. And I want all of you there with me. All of you. And I WILL CARE about our conversation. Even that juice cleanse, Cynthia.
Until then, shoot me a text and let me know what Netflix drama you’re into and we can wear comfy pants and watch it together from the comfort of our couches.
P.S. Here are some of my favorite relaxing products. I have all of these or something similar. Enjoy, my fellow homebodies!
Books I’ve been digging:
- Tell the Wolves I’m Home
- Lottery by Patricia Wood
- The Light we Lost by Jill Santopolo
- The Language of Flowers
- The Girl FROM the Train by Irma Joubert
P.P.S. Things I want to try. If you have any of these, let me know, so I have a good reason to pick one up!