Loneliness and Insecurity

There’s a weird feeling I have at the moment, and it’s called loneliness and insecurity.  It means I want to talk and make a friend, but I’m insecure/anxious about how the conversation would go and whether it would be a positive overall interaction or a negative one.

As an HSP, apparently I go out of my way to avoid uncomfortable situations, so you can guess where that leaves me.  I guess I’ve kind of forgotten about my HSP-ness, except today, I noticed one of my friends on Facebook, an acquaintance, rather, had changed her last name back to her maiden name.  That’s never a good sign when you know they are (were?) married.  It’s really disheartening and while one shouldn’t jump to conclusions, I thought back to the research I read a long time ago about how neuroticism is the number one personality predictor of an unhappy marriage, in so many words.  I think HSP-ness and neuroticism pretty much overlap quite a bit.  So I made my hubby take the HSP test.  He’s not an HSP (no surprise at all there).  I think when I make my hubby take tests like these and listen to his responses, I realize how much I assume everyone around me must think the way I think, or feel the way I feel in response to things, and how strange it is to find out that they don’t.  You mean loud noises don’t really bother you?!  You mean you’re not bothered by coarse fabrics?  You don’t get nervous when someone is watching you do something?  You must be an alien!  Except no, the alien, folks, is me.  Just kidding.  We are 20% of the population, so not so alien after all.  But the point is, something about us, oh, maybe the way we are so very moody, makes it difficult for people to live very very closely to us, which marriage is.  Anyhow, as you can probably guess, this doesn’t make me feel too good about myself.  So it’s been awhile since I’ve thought about these personality things.  Thankfully, it is the Lord who brought me to my husband, and my husband to me.  His ways really are higher than our ways.  My thoughts are kind of all over the place on this.  I guess I just feel bummed when things aren’t working out for people and of course I can’t have any way of knowing what is actually going on, so how can I say anything?  It’s all very confusing.  Years and years have passed and so much change, too.

I think that’s what ties all of these thoughts together.  Change.  I don’t like change.  Since I’m back home, I’ve realized a lot of folks are probably still around, but I don’t know if they would want to talk to me.  There’s always the past, the connections to this person or that person, and then there’s this huge gap of time, and by now, I have no clue what to think or what they think, or if they even think.  I want to connect with people, but I have no words.  Or maybe they’re busy.  Or maybe I’m busy.  I would be okay, except see the reason I’m writing this is that I spent too long scrolling through a NewsFeed, reading just that.  News.  News about people, when all I really want is to actually sit down and talk to them, except I also don’t want that as well.  Because what if they don’t open?  That feeling when you can’t seem to get through feels even lonelier, somehow.  Why do things change?  So we left our old community behind, but I am forming a new community here, and it will take time.

I feel there is a new stage of life ahead of me.  The leaves are growing a radiant reddish hue and life is morphing as well.  It seems as I grow older, family becomes more and more primary, and more of them actually need your care, or is it that I actually notice and care about someone other than myself.  I will be 29 in a few weeks.  Throughout most of my life, I haven’t felt my age.  I’ve always felt younger than I actually was.  Today though, my age feels very real to me.

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Interior Design

How many years of study does it take to become an interior designer?  And how much of it is natural talent?  I’ve been reading up on design, since looking at our living room gives me little inspiration for what to do with it.  It’s difficult when you’re on a budget in your head which is not a budget at all (the budget is, I just bought a house, and I don’t want to spend anything until I feel like it again), and also wanting to not have a space that really looks designed (um contradiction, much?).  Not going to find that on Pinterest anywhere, I think.  Do people actually use these living rooms?  Or do those pillows just sit there, in that exact formation, pretending to be inviting, but inviting no one?  Is it just art?  Beautiful art, but I can’t picture myself or guests inside of it?  I wonder.

They say thick fabrics and woven work and textures contribute to a cozy living room.  They say area rugs help tie everything together, even if you have carpet, which seems a huge tragedy to me.  Someone else was trying to convince me on the benefits of an area rug.  The jury is out.  I’m stuck guys.

It’s funny, but life was easier when we just had to make do with what we had.  When I was a broke (whether in bank account, or just in my mind) girl with a couple roommates, and we collected things off the streets like it was gold and hauled it away to our temporary dwelling.  Chairs here, a dishrack there.  When the old bones of the building had its own charm and we just had to move in.  The little details were woven in by a Berkeley person of the past, giving the place its own character to stand on.  It was more than we could have asked for already as wanderers.

Now the choices and possibilities are seemingly endless and yet not.  There is a house across from us that looks exactly the same as ours.  Except we did choose a few things out of the options.  Mushroom color grout.  A certain color for our tile.  Granite in the bathroom (which apparently is way more finicky than I knew!)  Other than that, little to no upgrades, so that our seller questioned whether we were truly going to live here or were we planning to rent out the place?  I considered ourselves simple, happy with the basics.  We would DIY the rest of it, we said.  We wanted to learn.  We didn’t know that moving would involve learning to a point of certain exhaustion (or is it the heat?), if learning can do such a thing.  I’m just being dramatic.  We’re not exhausted.  Just tired.

Interior designers say you have to start with a vision.  What’s our vision?

Old and Stale

My question to my mom before I got married was, “How do we stay fresh?”.  My main fear was becoming old and stale.  It was inevitable, wasn’t it?  Everything in the old creation gradually becomes old, stale, and dies.  The beautiful flowers eventually wither and fall.  My car puts on miles and scratches day after day.  Our clothes grow weary.  Was there any secret?  I didn’t know.  I still don’t know.  But I like the name of this site–Happy Wives Club.  Pretty cute.

So I’ll leave you with a quote from Fawn, since she’s been doing more research on the subject than me– “The best time to love with your whole heart is always now, in this moment, because no breath beyond the current is promised.”

There you have it.  Isn’t so much of the advice in our lives focused on the now?

Life Squared

A lot has happened since I last wrote on here, but it feels weird to blog because I don’t know if anyone reads this anymore.  It’s strange, moving through the years and having people flow in and out of your life with relative ease.  Some go unnoticed, and some do not.  I’m starting a new job on campus, which is nice.  I’ll be editing materials for disabled students, which is definitely up my alley.  I am nervous to begin of course, since it means less hours available for studying, but I’m glad for the income.  It’s been nice being a student again, but every once in awhile it’s nice to at least earn enough to be able to eat out every once in awhile and not feel too bad.  And I need to start saving for you know, life.

As I’ve grown I feel like my posts have become more and more mundane, but I think the subject matter hasn’t really changed.  I think what has changed is possibly the way I react to the subject matter.  I still remember my blog posts from junior high that were full of lots of high-energy stress and excitement over school and people.  Well, look where I am now.  Still in school, and still thinking about people.

A sent me a book about our defining decade, that is, the decade of our twenties.  It was about how to make the most out of our lives now.  Here’s where we are at.  Let’s do this.

16 Habits of Highly Sensitive People

My dear friend and fellow HSP C, sent me the link to this Huffington Post.  Of course I related to all of the points except for the one about team sports.  I quite like team sports, as long as it is the right team.  Yes, right team, like that’s not hard to achieve.

But what I was more intrigued by was the comments.  One comment was:

“As a MH Counselor – I also see a high correlation of high sensitivity in clients with addictions and ADHD – (if they don’t learn to manage it well – addictions serve them as a ‘fix’) ADD’ers are also tactile and sensitive to the texture of clothing, foods, shoes (hate them!) and sheets. Many parents don’t realize this – but its often the root of tantrums. . . same with sound sensitivity.
Glad to see a public article on this!”

So interesting, especially the part about tantrums.  I wonder what this would look like in action.  I know I’m very sensitive to clothing textures, food, and shoes– wow, the shoes thing, this may explain why I like to wear flip-flops in winter and Dee also does the same exact thing.  I also have a tendency to walk around barefooted even in the winter, and I love the texture of smoothies (smooth, duh).  It’s so strange finding out all these oddball things about you are functions of your own not typical brain, except that thousands of other people also share a similar not so typical brain.  I’m not sure what to make of that.  Just yesterday, I received compliments from L for my outfit, and my first reaction was to tell her how the cardigan was made of wool and was quite itchy.  It bothered me very much and so I was often rolling up my sleeves.  In fact, I do that even with comfortable cardigans.  It makes it easier for me to get work done, play piano, feel at ease.  I guess it’s not as random as I thought it was.  Well, is anything really that random?  I wonder if you could un-randomize a dice toss.  Now that would be a fun research topic.  Or maybe just a tedious and frustrating one.  Or both.

There are so many changes happening for me this week.  On Monday I interviewed, and Thursday I got reprimanded by the B, embarrassingly so, and also at the same time he told me my time was extended.  I didn’t know what to make of it, and I wasn’t that thrilled, especially since I was so disappointed in myself and in him for pointing out my mistake.  Of course, being the conniving person he is, he promptly invited me back in to get my opinion on another item, and that left me a little more assured in his confidence in me.  I don’t know.  I’m still disappointed, if I think about it too much.  It’s hard, not to dwell on things, you know?  And then I also applied for school, in LB.  I’ll hear back in a month.  We also interviewed a new girl, V, on Wednesday, and she’s moving in this weekend.  J is leaving for another town too.  The world keeps moving, and March is quickly settling into the scene, and I’m not ready yet.  I don’t know why I’m not ready, but I’m not.  I feel like I want to pause things, get my thoughts together, and spend some time reflecting on everything that has happened.  I want to let all the conflicting feelings take their place upon the stage and leave as quickly as they came, like birds settling gently upon the bough of a tree and then swiftly flying away.

Bridges of Empathy and Understanding

I found one of those old surveys back from 2009 that I did, per cousin’s request, only for her to see.  Remember those?  I have done a lot of them in my history on the internet, and I’m always amused when I read them again.  Sometimes, because I realize how much I haven’t changed, and other times, more so recently, because I realize I have.

And it gives me mixed feelings.  One line that I mentioned in one is that “we are all cut from the same piece of cardboard”.  And while part of me still believes that to some extent, the other part of me realizes that there are some things at a fundamental level that I cannot fathom being or doing.  That maybe the cardboard is more varied than I initially thought.  The kind of cruelty that exists in humanity is hard to understand.  It makes my stomach churn and my heart heavy.  What happened?  What do I do with this information that I somewhat wish I did not know?  I used to feel that as humans, we were really more alike than we thought we were, and that much of the conflict in the world came from misunderstanding.  But now, there are some things that are truly alien to me, simply beyond my understanding.  Is the bridge too long?  Maybe some just cannot be built.  What would words be worth?  What if they were words of life?

Sometimes I wish I could go back in time and talk to some of these people who experienced dynamic salvations– John Newton, for example.  A slave trader who, even after his conversion, did not give up slave trading until years later when he encountered severe illness.  I wish I could sit with them and talk to them and ask them, “What happened?  What led you to write Amazing Grace?”

“Oh you know, you know, you know”

“I’d never ask you to change” – Bruno Mars

So many sweet, sappy, couples these days.  And so it then follows that it must be true, that beauty is in the eye of the beholder.  I realized how wrong that sounds (I sure have a habit of saying things seriously and accidentally implying something negative).  My point is, isn’t it funny (read: amazing) how our eyes can create perfection out of imperfection, beauty out of broken?  It makes me warm and fuzzy inside.  Sort of.  Cause I’m not so sure it’s too warm and fuzzy in there.

Speaking of couples.  M, who I traditionally referred to as “spouse-y” in our high school days, tells me she wants me to “pursue her”.  So she asks if I can hangout over the weekend and I go, “I don’t know.. text me..” and she goes “No that’s passive! *laugh*”  And I go, “Oh right, I’ll pursue you!”  Dear friends.

I’ve reached a sort of plateau it seems.  And I’m okay with that, sort of (because I’m never really okay with a plateau).  For now.  I’ve been debating my next step and so far have reached no conclusions.  I’m afraid to take the next leap of faith.  My ground has felt like sinking sand for so long, I’m still not sure what solid feels like.  Solid maybe sounds like this though:

Give yourself to love the Lord.  No other way is so prevailing, so safe, and so full of enjoyment.  Just love Him.  Do not care for anything else.