we’ve been in small town hendersonville all week–side note, the news here is soooo boring. we decided that you can either have lots of externally crazy people (and therefore interesting news) or lots of quiet internally crazy people (and therefore boring news). we’re hoping to head back saturday. it’s been sad, for sure this week. the dr is pretty confident that it was a stroke, but the mri will confirm all of that on monday. there’s been mowing and moving furniture and cooking and making meals, lots of just answering the phone and receiving people’s sympathy and well wishes. don’t get me wrong, getting lots of phone calls is sweet and it’s good to know so many people care, aaand sometimes i too get peopled out.
last night at dinner, i actually got up and started doing the dishes because the conversation at the table was kind of infuriating. this is okay. i am an extravert, but, recently, i was reading about personality types (here if you’re interested) and one of the things that i was surprised by is that my personality type (ENFP) functions primarily in extraverted intuition and secondarily in introverted feeling. all of those times when i thought i was a little crazy for being an extravert who needed to process my feelings alone, i now realize were perfectly normal.
i already knew about the different types, but seeing the idea that each type comes with its own unique leading was really fascinating to me. for example, my darling k is an ISTJ:
As an ISTJ, your primary mode of living is focused internally, where you take things in via your five senses in a literal, concrete fashion. Your secondary mode is external, where you deal with things rationally and logically.
so, doesn’t that sound like a blast? me extraverted intuiting all over the place while he’s internally trying to process information 5 different ways? then i’m all “i gotta go somewhere quiet to feel this” and he’s going on out loud about how we need to just be rational (i.e. not emotional!)
opposites may attract, but they’re either colorful or exploding….or sometimes both.
anyway, all of that to say that i differ slightly (….ok, more than slightly) in political opinions from my in-laws, and every time i feel us going near that conversation, i have to back up because, in my opinion, there are no political solutions, and if there were, they’d involve loving and caring for the poor instead of isolating and rejecting them.
ever notice that people who are most vehemently against gay marriage don’t have any gay friends? or people who protest abortion but have never worked in a pregnancy care center or provided housing or mentorship or care for someone who’s struggling with whether or not to terminate a pregnancy?
when i was teaching in public school, i had a student come to me in tears because at 15, she’d gotten pregnant. she asked me for advice. legally, i was bound by the school system to tell her “abstinence”–technically it was the only thing we were allowed to say about sex. i broke the rules and listened to her and talked gently. i helped her get an appt with the school nurse and we sat down together to talk about what she needed to do.
in the end, she decided to get an abortion. i was heartbroken, because for the previous two years, k and i had been trying unsuccessfully to get pregnant. i wanted so badly to raise that little baby. but it was her decision and she knew all of her options. seven years later, i sometimes wonder about her and her decision. i don’t know if she regrets it or not or what the emotional impact has been for her. but i know that i walked with her. i listened. and while i wish she’d made a different decision, i believe wholeheartedly that i cannot judge her because i was not in her shoes. i have no idea what i would have done if faced with everything she was facing. i’d like to tell you that i wouldn’t have gotten an abortion, but when i was 15, i was really emotional and spastic. and if i had grown up in her family, with her circumstances, i might have come to the same conclusion.
and if we’re honest, our issues about all these current political scenes have nothing to do with the actual reality. because facing the actual reality would mean that we are facing our own personal obsession with greed and fear. if we were able to let go of our fear long enough to love, we might just find that it is us who makes the world a better place, not one particular guy in a particular house in a particular city. we might stop hating. we might discover that love really can change the world. we might realize our own potential and seek to grow instead of suppress anyone who doesn’t look/act/think/talk like us.
on a side note: i found out the month after that student came to me that i was pregnant with e. changed my life and continues to everyday.