Wednesday, August 06, 2008

My Essential Self

I felt an intense sense of connectedness with Dr. X. today. I love those sessions where I feel not only understood, but also admired and fully cared for maybe even more because of my quirky behaviours.

I was telling Dr. X. how I went out with a friend and I had been really anxious. My mood has switched upwards, but so has my anxiety, irritability and I'm not sleeping very well. Anyways, I was so anxious and as a result I found myself talking, and talking...quickly, from topic to topic. I really wish I was less a talker and more a listener. So I said to Dr. X., very strongly, "I hate that side of myself!"

"Hate"?, he said. "That is a very strong word to use". I told him, "I do. I do hate the way I talk so much sometimes. I kept hearing myself talking and thinking...shut up and listen, slow yourself down, but I couldn't stop talking or slow down."

Part of it was my mood was up too, and I was really engaged. My mind explodes when people share their ideas and thoughts. It is like every idea they share sets of a million in me. Some people really trigger tons of ideas in me. I love being around those people. I just wish I could vocalize my ideas less and listen to their ideas more. I expressed how it sometimes happens during our sessions. I find myself interrupting him. I hate it when I interrupt people. It is rude.

Dr. X. looked at me and said I was often quiet and reflective. When I am feeling better I become ebullient and bubbly. He said never thinks of my interrupting him as anything more than an expression of my bubbly self.

I am quiet and reflective. Actually, for someone so extroverted I have intense social anxiety and am very introverted much of the time. More than anything just want to stay in my house and avoid the outside world. The quiet reflective me, is often the depressed me.

The well me is a little over the top. In fact when young and well I was unstoppable. I really loved that force of energy within myself. I loved that I was full of ideas, and interested in so many things. I love that I was brave and took wild and sometimes insane risks. I loved that I felt free to be whoever I was. It seemed the people around me loved my playful, boisterous spirit too.

I think I only began to hate that side of me at work, because I received feedback a few times from my bosses that I "overwhelmed" some of my co-workers. I overwhelmed them because I was a powerhouse and wanted to know more, and more and more. I did not just sit and just do my job. I invented and reinvented it. I took on all sorts of projects. I threw myself fully into everything I did. Some people just wanted to show up and do what was expected and go home. Which is fine. If that is what you want to do. I'm just not like that. I always wanted more; more responsibility, more new things to do, and more challenges.

So, maybe I don't "hate" my ebullience and passion for ideas and life when I am with someone who triggers these in me. Maybe I really love that about myself and am afraid I will be rejected if I am the real me. Maybe my trying to control my expressiveness, talkativeness and energy are holding me back.

I remember my best friends in university would all get a kick out of me sometimes when I began talking really fast and loud and rapidly switching from ideas to other ideas. We all joked about it, but they all embraced me and loved that quirk in me. I felt Dr. X. expressing that same kind of love for my energetic quirkiness today. That felt good.


Handsome B. Wonderful said...

Being understood is like gold for me and it sounds like Dr. X really understands you. I really relate this this:

I am quiet and reflective. Actually, for someone so extroverted I have intense social anxiety and am very introverted much of the time. More than anything just want to stay in my house and avoid the outside world.

This is SO ME!!!

The Silent Voices in my Mind said...

Aqua, I am so glad you felt affirmed with Dr. X. I find it amazing, frustrating and disappointing to recognize how much of ourselves we supress to create comfort in those around us. And then it becomes so internalized that we think who we really are is not who we should be and by extension who we want to be.

May you find the strength and desire to be who your tells you is your natural beauty...

Polar Bear said...

I'm glad Dr X is so good to you and that you have such a special relationship with him.

It's really nice to feel connected to someone isn't it?

Polar B.

Polar Bear said...

I'm actually very introverted. I don't talk very much at all. In fact V's told me that in the first year or so of us working together, words from me were like hen's teeth :)

I am more open now, but that's because I trust her so completely now.

But generally, with colleagues or other people around me, I tend to always find myself as the listener. People tell me all kinds of stuff. Most times I know more about the other person that the person knows about me. It can be very lonely that way.

Aqua said...

Thanks for the comments.

HBW: I am glad to see you posting. It's good to interact with you. I knew you and I had the introvert/extrovert "bipolar" thing going on...I'm really not sure which is the real me.

SV: I agree with you, we become unsure of who we are, or whether who we are is okay. It's tough to figure out and accept ourselves at the best of times.

PB: Yes, it is the best feeling in the world to feel connected to someone you care about; it really is even better than best when you know they care about you no matter how you are feeling, reacting or being.

Also, I think it can be lonely being either when we are depresed. It can be very lonely as a depressed extrovert I often use up all my energy being "up" for other people. It's exhausting and leads me to hide out at home because the interaction required for me to be around people is unsustainable.

I remember I would cry all the way to work and the second I stepped in the door I was beyond bubbly and talkative. by the time it was time to leave the office I was so tired I could barely open the door.