Facing Fear as an Introvert


When I first brought my dog Morris home from a small town in Minnesota where he was born and therefore named after, he was so scared he wouldn’t even walk through the front door. Of course he eventually familiarized himself with his new surroundings. However, he had the kind of personality that kept him from easily introducing himself to new people, places and things. Morris was funny, clingy and content in his world of the family he grew to know and love.  He wasn’t eager to go outside. He didn’t care for strangers and did not make it easy for new people to get in his space. Yet he was funny, loving, loveable, curious, and quite relaxed in his own world…

Overall, Morris was just like me.  He was frightened of the new and unfamiliar, preferred only those he already knew and did not easily embrace change.  Whenever he was in his crate in travel mode he rarely relaxed because he was too occupied with concern about what lied ahead.

I can’t say I worry about traveling or have abandonment issues (ok, maybe a smidgen). But when I realized I picked a dog whose personality all too freakishly resembled myself, I did some serious self inventory. I found out just how much into myself I was and not in the most sickeningly conceited way either.

Now as I sit with the year almost ending, I feel I’m at a crossroads.  I’m recently left to be a single mother with no viable source of income.  For an introvert, a situation such as mine is enough to send one deeper into solitary confinement, but my sensible side reminds me I have a little one who can’t afford for me to dive into the sea of solitude and depression.

Still, a part of me is having a hard time striking the match of life that will propel me into an existence that shows my ex I’m not done just because our relationship is.  Although I knew our relationship should’ve ended long before it did, I became afraid. I spent quite a bit of time in the last few years of my marriage frightened about the mere idea of traveling solo. Scared to find out where the road without the only man I can say I truly loved would lead.  Where would I go? What would I do with no income? How could I turn everything around all by my little lonesome loner self? I didn’t know then and I don’t quite yet know now, but I’m forced to find out and I’m most days scared stiff because of it.

Sometimes I wonder if my fear of the light that shines inside of me is because I’m an introvert with a side of shyness, or am I a shy introvert because of my fears.  I don’t know which came first.  All I know is I’m ready to be free, but its still slightly difficult to release the thoughts that keep me from making daring and bold moves.

I know taking leaps is the only way I’ll get over my pain and move forward with my life, but old habits are hard to break.  I’ve spent the last six months making excuses as to why and why not. I’ve made minimal attempts and have done some serious thinking.

One thing I concluded is the wheels of change start with or without me, but I have the right to change their direction.  No matter what my fears and hang-ups about certain situations and circumstances, I’ll be a stronger introvert for pushing my way out.  After all, I’m not dead, just down for a very short count.

I know my biggest obstacle is belief in myself, but that wall has been falling down as I’ve made moves in business ventures, writing and even socializing with strangers.  A few years ago, I would’ve chosen the safest and less bumpy road for my life if I would’ve chosen any road at all.  But these days I’m stepping out of old skin and into a me that feels just as comfortable and natural whether I’m certain of tomorrow or not.  I know everything within me is supposed to be released and release I will, starting with this post that’s been quite revealing from an introverts perspective.

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One thought on “Facing Fear as an Introvert

  1. I enjoy your writing in all its transparency and relatedness. Cheers to you.

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