About two weeks ago, my husband, two children and I decided to take a lovely vacation to visit family while simultaneously picking up my old man of a dog from Grandma and Grandpa. My husband, the trooper he is, traveled alone with our two girls from Georgia to Utah, while I went to an awesome writing retreat in North Carolina by myself. (Shout out to my PIF peeps!!) It's been a very long time since I've had a break from the kiddos, and the hubs wanted to give this time to me.
The retreat was kick ass, to say the least, and I met a ton of awesome people. I gained knowledge in my craft and confidence to boot, but being a naturally introverted person, it was difficult being around people for that length of time. I really needed about two weeks of alone time to recover from three days of talking to people.
I didn't get that time.
Here is something that most people do not understand about introversion. I'm not shy. At all. This will sound so bad, but when it comes to what strangers think of me and my personality, I care very little. My friends, family and my readers, yes, I care, but a stranger who is just there to judge me? Mmmm... No. I'm blunt and loud and I try very hard to be funny and engaging when I'm around other people. And yes, I may have RBF Syndrome (Resting Bitch Face to the uninitiated), but I’m working on it.
But this interaction with other people is a huge drain on my energy. It takes serious effort to be there. A single party could take more recovery time than minor surgery, and I HATE talking on the phone. There are times I just hand over the phone to my husband because I can't talk anymore. I’m actually surprised my girls learned to talk at all because at home I barely say a word unless I absolutely have to.
So going directly from an event of this magnitude and then going to visit family is a recipe for disaster, right? Wrong.
My family understands. They let me be my naturally introverted self, didn’t make me go out and do stuff, talked to me one on one, and pretty much let me work so everyone could visit and I wouldn’t be a huge wet blanket for the rest of the family. (I was on a laptop and half engaged in the conversation around me, don’t judge.)
The hard part was driving from Utah to New Mexico, New Mexico to Texas, and then Texas to Georgia, each leg broken up by a visit with family. With the hubs, two kids and a small ten-year-old dog who is so over it, it’s not even funny. There were tantrums, a given. The pup refused his food in favor of sliced turkey. There was the strawberry shake incident, in which I am very thankful for Lifeproof cases, and can attest that they are, in fact, waterproof.
But I need about a month to recover from this. If you don't hear from me, I'm probably hiding in my closet with my laptop and chocolate. I'll come out when I'm good and ready.