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Monday, April 03, 2006

A Whole Lot of Nothing

I've been having a mini-breakdown lately. My head has felt a bit like one of those snowglobes that's been shaken up. But I'm really okay, and actually kind of happy, just a bit tossed around and confused. Imagine the snowman inside the snowglobe, with its smiley little face. That's me.

It doesn't help that it's April 3rd, and as I sit looking out the window, springtime snow is falling. For someone born in California and raised in Seattle, that is definitely confusing. But its all good. It certainly can't last very long (can it?). The two inches we got Saturday night and awoke to on Sunday melted right away.

For several days last week I was kind of manic, making all sorts of plans for my life, dreaming big dreams, shouting "carpe diem" out the window at the shirtless workman next door (no, not really). I had visions of starting an online bookstore out of my garage by subscribing to Alibris.com's bookselling service (worldwide exposure on places like bn.com, Amazon, etc. - how could that go wrong, baby?)

Also, I've been dreaming about theater. I've always enjoyed acting, and since no one is knocking on my door begging for me to be in their movie or play (other than my 7-year-old son, Jack), I thought, "Heck, why don't I produce a play?" So, I've been researching play production, and dreaming those big dreams that have a tendency of popping the very first time I mention my idea to someone a little more earth-bound than myself.

With my bubble burst (only temporarily, thank goodness), I was a bit blue for a couple days. I was wondering once again, "What is wrong with me? Why am I so different from everyone else I know?" I mean, I don't see Lisa producing plays. And Gillian, reader that she is, isn't starting an online book-selling business. Sigh.

On a whim this afternoon, while sitting at the computer trying to read "Don Quixote" while Ellie and Evan fought, and sipping a glass of wine before leaving for work, I happened upon the website Darlene saved on my "Favorites" several months ago. It is about the "INFP" personality type. INFP stands for Introvert-Intuitive-Feeling-Perceptive. I re-read this little snippet and was delighted to see that I'm PERFECTLY NORMAL! Perfectly normal for an INFP, that is.

It so happens that only 1% of the population are INFPs, so when a typical INFP (like me) feels like they're just a bit different than everyone else, and feel like they don't quite fit in, it's because IT'S TRUE! We are the least represented of all the personality types, so we really are the odd-men (and women) out.

And this made me especially tickled (and reassured): INFPs love quiet, solitary activities like reading (hmmmm); and they love to perform in theater (hmmmmm!); AND they make excellent novelist and writers (HMMMM!!!) So, I am normal afterall.

Most of my beloved friends and family have tried to tell me I'm okay for many years, but I can't quite get it through my thick skull. I tend to be very hard on myself (that's the idealist in me). The reality is, I don't quite see the world the way most other people do, and it really is confusing at times. I make decisions based on feelings and passion and want to conquer the world, and then I sink into morbid depressions of self-doubt and uncertainty. Most of the time, when I'm around other people, I'm faking fitting in. It's taken many years and much practice, let me tell you. The downside is that this only perpetuates a feeling of not fitting. Oh well, I'd rather be different.

Hey, I have an idea. I should start an INFP support group. I know two other INFPs off-hand who might benefit. Elaine and Jeff, what do you think?


At 8:57 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

processing, processing, processing.

Hmmm, think I am in!



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