The Extroverted Introvert

IMG_2801Growing up, I was always the extrovert, while my sister was the shy one. I loved people, social events, and generally dominating the room. I was bossy, full of ideas, and determined to ensure that everyone was on my wavelength. I made friends easily, and despite my social dominance, people tended to like me.

After a confidence-blowing high school experience (and thus a foray into introversion), I resumed my outgoing ways in college and beyond. I was so busy. I kept up with school, jobs, extracurriculars, family responsibilities, and still had time to party like a rockstar. I was hardly ever alone, and enjoyed the company of anywhere between 1 and 3 roommates.

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But these days, I feel a bit like a hermit. Once I’m out, I have a good time and I enjoy the company I’m with, but I have a hard time motivating myself to get out in the first place. And really the only reason I go out at all is because I have serious FOMO (that means “fear of missing out,” for those of us getting old.) While I used to be fairly energized by the presence of people, I increasingly prefer the company of my cats… even though I am married and not quite 40 years old just yet 🙂

IMG_2806Seriously, I actually miss my furballs when I’m out or away. I fret about them being lonely. I wonder what they are up to (sleeping, Chuck always says.)

It’s still fun to be around people for a bit, but it can also be exhausting. I like to show up, enjoy, then come back home. I like unwinding in my own space. Sleeping in my own bed. Eating my own snacks. Wearing my big glasses (and not wearing a bra!)

IMG_0075I think these things are okay, so long as I don’t allow myself to become completely socially lazy. This weekend, Chuck was away and I had every opportunity to hang around and not see a soul… and that’s almost what I did. But I socialized three times! I shoved aside quiet time – blogging time and job application time and yoga time and kitty time – to nurture some budding friendships. I even went to the local Women’s March, where we stumbled across this fitting demonstrator:

IMG_4789In all seriousness – I am not a true introvert. More like an extroverted introvert. I still enjoy socializing, but in smaller doses, and I’m happier and more content with my own company – rather than pining about loneliness.

In Okinawa, I was so anxious to make friends, and quickly. Here in Cali, I’m taking it slow (and making some great progress!) But it’s amazing how priorities (and personalities?) change, isn’t it?!

Local Nooks: Revolution Roasters

I found myself a happy, colorful little nook here in Oceanside. As I mentioned in my previous post, I’ve been hankering to try the lavender honey latte at a nearby coffee shop called Revolution Roasters. I finally made it happen!  While I was at it, I splurged on avocado toast and a sort of grapefruit pound cake. And when I say “splurged,” I am not kidding. That “light lunch” cost me about $18 (not including tip!)

Shop local they said… it will be fun, they said.

I am joking. I do love shopping local, and gosh darn it – I was hungry. I also made a new friend and sat next to an adorable golden retriever. Totally worth it!

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Yum! And you can order just about anything gluten-free!

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Darling little boutique next to Revolution Roasters

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My kind of wall art!

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Colorful array of shops and yoga studios, next to the decidedly hipster Revolution Roasters

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Took a slight detour on my way home to my favorite perch overlooking the Pacific

New Year Stumbles & Oops

IMG_1278I don’t typically believe in New Year resolutions. I think they tend to set us up for failure, and (as a risk-averse individual) I generally try to avoid such situations.  I prefer smaller, bite-size endeavors, knowing that only some may stick – and that’s okay!

For instance, I wanted to take just the month of January to detox in a handful of ways: no drinking, more plant-based food, more exercise, a tighter budget, less time on social media, and a re-strategized job search (although I am working part-time now.)

This is fairly standard stuff after the holidays, which are saturated with rich party food, alcohol, excessive spending, and social, yet sedentary, activity.  Given that the months leading up to December were also full of the eating out, drinking, and dismissal of routine exercise that comes with hosting guests and trips to Vegas, I’ve been needing that detox for a while now!

But, 2018 has had other plans so far. I did give up drinking, but I am not reaping the benefits of feeling more energized because I’ve been sick since the day after Christmas! So, I likely wouldn’t be drinking anyway. Also, because of said sickness, I haven’t revamped my approach to jobs nor have I gotten any exercise (scratch that – I went for one bike ride last week.) To add insult to injury, Chuck’s income unexpectedly went down a couple hundred dollars per month via our military housing allowance, so… new budget incoming…!

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Then, my cat Momo was accidentally out after dark and had a violent encounter with
some large animal – perhaps a raccoon, or maybe a coyote. We found her in severe shell shock, covered in mud and excrement, but otherwise physically unharmed (thank God!) She did develop an infection in her toe, when we discovered one of her claws had been ripped out. So now she’s on a plethora of meds and wearing the Cone of Shame. This series of misadventures and vet visits has led to yet more spending and more Mac n’ Cheese/pizza nights than I’d care to admit. Anyway. I’m going to have to re-think this little lady’s curfew!

But despite my moaning, I am still feeling pretty great about 2018.  I may not have adhered to all of my January plans, but there’s always February! I’m also in the throes of planning a short trip to Cabo with Chuck, during his pre-deployment leave in March… screw that budget! (Just kidding – we are trying to use our credit card points to save quite a few bucks.) I am excited, though. I’ve missed planning trips!

We are enjoying temperatures in the 60s and even the 70s, I’m starting to feel more comfortable at my job, and Mo and I are both finally on the mend. I also applied for three full-time jobs in the past 24 hours and cleaned the house top to bottom 🙂 It smells so good in here!

Now, I’m about to dust off my cruiser bike, Trixie, and careen down Oceanside Boulevard to get the Lavender Honey Latte I’ve been dying to try at Revolution Roasters. Y’all know I love my lavender! Maybe it’ll give me the boost I need for even more afternoon productivity. Forward and onward…

Happy New Year and Godspeed!

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