Are you an introvert or an extrovert? I don't know if I'm right, but this is what I think the difference comes down to.
OK. To start.
I found this note taped to the inside of India's closet door.
Once I found it, I did gently remind Jordan that we don't say "shut up" because it's unkind. But in my head, I was all solidarity, buddy.
Me, I am an introvert. If I don't have a certain amount of alone time, I start to get really tired and angry and resentful. And by alone I mean alone alone.
I've realized that the only time I'm really bored is when I am stuck somewhere with people I don't want to interact with. Otherwise, I can keep myself entertained just fine.
The other day my friend Rachel, who is an extrovert, said she's always happy to be with people. I mean, sure, she likes to be alone. But, you know, with another person.
And I said, "Oh, noooo. I need to be all by myself. Nick thinks I can be alone with him. NO. That is not alone."
I used to wish so hard that I were an extrovert. It would be so much easier to be so people-y.
But I am not.
Sometimes Nick will come home from work after the kids are in
bed and I will subtly try to get away but he will follow me from room
to room talking to me. And finally I have to be like, "Please, please
just give me 10 minutes. I need 10 minutes of nobody talking to me,
looking at me, breathing near me."
Anyway, Jordan is an introvert. He's always been able to play by himself. Not necessarily for long stretches, but I see him in his head, and I know it's an interesting place to him.
My daughter, on the other hand, wants to interact. She wants you to talk to her, to touch her, to listen to her. She wants to do a puzzle but she wants you to watch her doing it.
When they sleep, Jordan gets in bed and goes to sleep. Or if he crawls into our bed, he goes to the bottom of the bed. India wants to be right up next to you. She wants her face in your face. She wants to lie there and steal your breath just like a cat. She wants to touch you.
I don't know if extroverts tend to be cuddlers and introverts tend to be not-cuddlers, but I am an introverted not-cuddler. I mean, I cuddle my kids and I cuddle with Nick but when I want to sleep I want to sleep. This is my space and that is your space and now we do the sleeping.
India talks. Oh, she talks. Now, it's often charming. I find her interesting and she has a good vocabulary and it's just plain interesting to see this child of mine express her thoughts. She makes me laugh.
And she makes new friends and chats with new people so easily. This is lovely to see.
Sometimes Jordan will ask her to stop talking. Which just prods her to talk more. She will talk and talk and talk. Or make up songs that go on and on.
Sometimes I think, "How can one little human talk so much? Doesn't she get tired of talking?"
Sometimes she talks so much she makes her brother cry. She knows how to push his buttons.
Every once in a while I will say, "Can we all just stop talking and have quiet for two minutes? Let's all be quiet for two minutes."
India will wail, "I caaaaaaaan't! I caaaaaaaaaaaan't stop talking!"
And it does seem to be true.