The dichotomy of my own personality can occasionally shock me. This week I haven’t even set foot in my own apartment before 11pm every night, and all of the intervening hours are spent in the presence of other people. Imagining little self-absorbed self-involved me wandering around from one group setting to another is somewhat unsettling, even though I almost love it. I know I love getting back to my apartment just long enough to check me mail (real mail, not email) and then crash out in the body-shaped dent in my bed full of pillows. I love seeing people I care about every day.
At the same time, I feel empty. My normal enthusiasm for everything from crossing the street to opening doors for people is gone. People keep asking me what’s wrong, and even though nothing feels that way obviously they can read it on my face. I feel disconnected from my songs, even after I spent literally the entire weekend holed up in my apartment with my guitar recovering from all the time I spent outside of it last week.
When I took the Myers-Briggs personality indicator last summer I strongly leaned to one side or the other on every category except Introvert/Extrovert, where my score was nearly centered. All of the people who took the test with me were shocked because they couldn’t imagine me as an introvert, but anyone who really knew me well just chuckled knowingly. I don’t know how to make time for other people and myself in my life, and so right now I’m trapped at one extreme knowing that I’d feel just as trapped at the other. The reason I’m involved in so many performance groups and activities is because I know they’ll always get me outside of my room, and that I’ll enjoy myself while doing them. But, sometimes I give away too much of that time, leaving me feeling as though I’m lacking my own energy and opinions, and I try to fix it by spending whole days holed away from anything else. But, it doesn’t work. I played guitar for nine hours on Saturday with no interruption, but it doesn’t feel like I got anywhere. I need to distribute those little pieces of personal time around my schedule for them to mean anything.
Of course, I can’t necessarily distribute. I know people who do what I’ve been doing every night, and who have been doing it for years now. They’re happy people, but I suppose they just scored higher on the extrovert scale than I did, because I can be just as miserable and depressed while I’m surrounded with friends as I am sitting alone in my apartment. Lately I feel like I’m just circling some sort of desperate emotional low, and that as long as I keep myself moving I won’t have to notice it. But, at this point, moving might just be getting me closer.