I can’t be everything. That is my newly earned wisdom.
I feel like life keeps teaching me the same lesson over and over until I finally get it. And this time around, it’s that I can’t be what other people want me to be. I can only be… this.
And I’ve recently stopped feeling badly about it.
Everyone expects something from you. When I get busy and tired, those expectations get heavier, and I get more resentful of them. Generally, these aren’t huge things. They’re just little things that pile up that are most likely linked to the fact that I’m introverted and most of the world isn’t. Things that feel like an invasion to me, are likely just friendly gestures by an extrovert.
Here are a few things that are not negotiable about me:
I don’t drink. I tend to stay in on weekends. I’m not fun at a party. Ever.
I hate babysitting. Like a lot. So things that work for other moms like swapping babysitting just don’t work for me. No matter how convenient it would be for that other mom.
I’m busy. Really busy. And my priorities start with my family and my writing, leaving not a whole lot left in the wake.
I’m celiac, and that doesn’t mean that I get a mildly upset stomach when I eat a piece of toast. That means I get very ill for months on end from a trace of gluten. I can’t just eat at someone’s home. I can’t just eat at a restaurant, either. It complicates social interactions.
But there are a lot of things I DO do:
I write books.
I can focus like a fiend on whatever project I’m working on, and I’m rather prolific because of that ability.
I love my family with everything I’ve got, and I have a few close friends who are as introverted as I am, and who don’t feel bad when I cancel on them. (I also don’t feel bad when they cancel on me!)
I enjoy my quiet time because it recharges me. My husband and son are both introverts, too, so we all need that quiet time.
I blog, I keep up with people online, and I’m grateful for the relationships I form with people that way.
I might not be able to eat out, but we often bring our friends over to our home to eat.
I’ve realized lately that I have to say No a lot to a lot of well-intentioned people. I don’t like disappointing people who are just trying to be friendly, but I can’t change what I have to offer. I can’t be everything. I can just be the best version of this that I can.
Besides, this is the formula for all those books! 😉