mom-mode post#166 – on being okay with being shy
December 11, 2011 § 2 Comments
Hi, I’m Priscila and I’m an introvert.
This morning as I was reading through my Google Reader feeds, I came across this post about an extrovert mom coming face to face with her daughter’s shyness. Her words struck a chord with me as I’m the introvert daughter of two extroverts and the sister of an extroverted older sister. My parents are the type that have many friends, are the life of the party, the type that can talk to anyone.
Growing up I envied (and still do) my sister’s uncanny ability to make friends. At birthday parties she would work the room and in minutes already have a game started or a new friend. With her by my side, my introverted self never had to face the world alone. But my parents were well aware of the fact that I wasn’t always going to have my sister to ‘triage’ birthday parties for me. I guess deep down they wanted my exuberant at-home persona to match my overly shy outside-of-the-house self.
So mama went to work, looking for ways to equip me to face the world on my own. I took piano lessons (including having to be alone on stage for end-year recitals), sports, foreign languages and the last piece of the puzzle, drama lessons. When I was in 7th grade, my drama teacher gave me the confidence I needed to face a crowded room.. Because in the end that was all it was missing, enough self-confidence to walk in a room and not want to hide behind my mama’s legs. And even when shyness took the best of that confidence, I learned enough skills to act my way through any crowded situation.
All the while though I never felt like my parents thought less of me for being shy. Sometimes my mom would just let me sit by her and not say anything. Sometimes I know it was hard for her and she would push me a little too hard. But I couldn’t be more thankful for the opportunities my parents gave me to be comfortable in my skin. They let me go see the world, earn experiences that would one day help me get every job I’ve ever interviewed for. Enough confidence to stand in front of a room full of 10-year-olds and not run away in tears.
Enough confidence to be an introvert in a world full of extroverts and be perfectly okay with that. I’m the girl who after spending all day with people, still needs a day off on her own to just rest. And I’m okay with that. I’m not afraid of awkward silences, in fact sometimes I even welcome them.
This introvert that learned how to turn on the “extrovert button” now has a son that shows every inclination to introversion. Thankfully, I have my parents to look to for wisdom on how to teach him to navigate this gregarious world while still letting him know that I love him just the way he is. I mean, look at those brown eyes, what’s not to love?
And if you’re an extrovert that knows an introvert, just for kicks, take a look at this article: