finding belonging as an introvert

Today I have another special guest in Sluiter Nation.

A new Sluiter Nation Recruit.

Today I bring you Galit from These Little Waves.

I am so excited and honored to have her here today.  Her writing has been blowing me away for over a year since our paths crossed over at The Red Dress Club (Now Write on Edge).

Each of her words is chosen with precision and care.

Reading her words feels like taking a peek at her heart.  Her soul.

Galit is the real deal and I am so happy to share her with you.

*************

My bare feet pad along aged carpet.

Brody is curled into his covers, his room is already darkened. His blond hair is shocking amidst a sea of blues – blankets and pillows and lovies in every possible shade – sky, cornflower, navy.

I pull him close, and we puzzle piece, his head against my chest. “Sweet dreams, buddy.” I whisper. He smiles back. His eyes bright, but ready for nap time.

He has to be.

Because as the sun reaches its high, I reach my low.

So I turn off the phones and take off my contacts and change into pajamas and close the curtains and flick the lights and turn off anything else than can be turned off because this is exactly what I need to be: Off.

And yes, this is because I’ve mothered since morning’s first light. I’ve driven and cleaned and played and organized and fed and snacked and read and nagged and I’m so, so very tired.

But this is also (mostly) because I’m an introvert.

And after I’ve been on – soaking in laughter and fun and learning and stories – I need to turn everything (and everyone) off, in order to refill.

So I do.

Everyday.

Did I just admit that I nap everysingleday?

I did. I do.

And I’m not even going to apologize for it.

Here’s why.

Because knowing how you work and living unapologetically is a gift.

Doesn’t it sound breath-takingly amazing to not apologize for your loud voice or the way you interrupt or the fact that you nap everysingleday?

This is the first pad down that long hallway towards you – learning what makes you tick, and doing just that.

And once you’ve arrived there, comes the second part. And I should tell you that this, too, is hard work.

Once you know what keeps you happy and sane and whole, and you choose to do these things, you have to be okay with the consequences and outcomes of your choices.

(I should say, because I believe this to my core, that knowing yourself and living unapologetically as you doesn’t mean staying comfortable without change.

Your absolute best is just outside your comfort zone.

So you should go to that conference and attend that event and introduce yourself to your new best friend.

But first, you need to know your zone, what fills you up, and what empties you.

Because once known, these will become tools for owning your stretches rather than opportunities to beat yourself up for not being louder or faster or more social – or anything really, other than you.)

Together, the two sides of this gem, shine a bright light on belonging. One that I want to pass from my own weathered hands into my children’s softened ones.

Because I want to sweeten their path, of course I do. And a sense of belonging is, if nothing else, sweet.

But first, there’s this gem.

And with it, will come gratefulness for who they are and what they have.

And that sense of belonging? Will be theirs, from the inside out, right where it’s always been.

**************

Thank you, Galit, for sharing your words here.

Read more of Galit’s words at These Little Waves.  Follow her on twitter and on facebook.

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About Katie

Just a small town girl...wait no. That is a Journey song. Katie Sluiter is a small town girl, but she is far from living in a lonely world. She is a middle school English teacher, writer, mother, and wife. Life has thrown her a fair share of challenges, but her belief is that writing through them makes her stronger.

Comments

  1. Ah, two of my favorite gals together at last!
    Good advice Galit! I love taking naps on the weekends. It’s so refreshing. I tried taking naps at work but people complained that my air mattress blocked the way to the snack machine.
    m.

  2. Thank you for hosting a tiny slice of my heart here today, my sweet friend. xo

  3. A slice of your heart … so very true.
    And with all you leave in the blogosphere, it is a good thing that you are ALL heart, sweetness xxxx

  4. Thank you for sharing this, Galit. My DH is much more introverted than I am, and it seems to strike at interesting times. I need to remember that sometimes he needs that time, even if I THINK I need him to do something else.

    • Yes, that.

      It’s so very interesting to mix introverts and extroverts! I love what you said about realizing what he may need! It took Jason and I a looong time to work out how quickly to “discuss” things! {Maybe still working on it sometimes?}

      Thanks for the words, you!

  5. “Because knowing how you work and living unapologetically is a gift.” I love this line.
    From one mothering, unapologetic introvert to another, this is a beautiful post. Thanks for sharing this tiny slice of your heart–it’s inspiring in many ways.

    • I love every single word that you just wrote – thank you. {Truly}

      And I’m so very happy that we’ve crossed paths! So looking forward to getting to know you!

  6. Yes, this. Refill, recharge. I know I need to, alone. Not necessarily a nap (though I would love to), but just being on my own. Not being needed for an hour. Bliss.

  7. Oh Galit, you KNOW i relate that empty feeling. Though I’m the worst napper. Any time I even try I wake up beyond disoriented and grouchy. I do, however, love, need, and crave time alone.

    • I’m sad for your lack of naps! 🙂

      But yes, recharge however we need and can – we’re all better for it, yes?

      Thanks for the words, girl!

  8. Beautiful!

  9. I love seeing you two together! Galit, Ive always felt guilty about taking naps when the boys do, because I feel like I should be doing something much more productive. Thanks for sharing this. I feel SO much better about taking the time to recharge myself.

  10. Oh, sweet Galit. I love your heart. Your words have totally hit the center of me today. Living unapologetically. Finding and relishing that which fills you up. Things I need to focus on. Don’t we all from time to time? Thank you for this.

  11. I am an introvert as well. I have to completely psych myself up for being social, and sometimes I just can’t call it forth. I tend to room alone at conference because I need that time to decompress from the social moments every day, although if I have someone at my elbow with me at a conference I can often do the socializing much better than if I’m on my own. I’ll retreat if I’m alone. Total catch-22.

    • Total and complete catch 22!

      But what’s fabulous about YOU is that you know exactly what you need and you make sure you get it! Now *that’s* a win!

      {Thanks for the note, sweet friend!}

  12. FABULOUS!

  13. Beautifully written, as always. And yes, it’s so very important to know who you are and what you need. It makes you the best you that you can possibly be. xoxo

  14. I love how you talk about not apologizing for who you (we) are. That’s the key. We are who we are and that is the best us and the us that we NEED to be.

    Love you…

    xo

  15. I am such an introvert so I do so love this. I love your words. Now, I need to figure out this nap thing because it’s brilliant!

  16. Hello friend and hello my heart. Great post- as an introvert I see much of my own reserved-ness in my kids to varying degrees. Thank you for the reminder that acceptance begins in the home.

    • Oh that last line. You nailed it with that last line.

      {Accept them and teach them to accept us, yes?}

      Thank you for getting me and my heart, and for sharing your’s!

  17. Hi you two!

    Galit! That is so lovely and honest.

    And this: “But first, you need to know your zone, what fills you up, and what empties you.”

    It sounds sooooo easy, right?

    At 45, I think I know what empties my tank.

    And what I need to replenish.

    But it’s still hard sometimes to remind others of my needs.

  18. Love this extension of Galit’s Facebook question. Perfect and honest and so Galit. Yay, I enjoyed reading this!

  19. Galit, I take a nap every day too. Yes, everysingleday. And I am still working on not feeling guilty about it, or that I shouldn’t need it. But I do. And you have helped me figure out why (I’m an introvert too) and to accept that about myself and not apologize. Thank you. SO MUCH. Also? Nice to know I’m not alone.

  20. Amazing. I so love this. I can’t even put together a cohesive comment.

  21. Beautiful and so VERY thought provoking…also…I may have to adopt the everyday napping mantra. Not a bad idea!

    • It rocks, you! Even a quiet time gives us all what we need to make the rest of the day what it should be – happy and full and good!

      {Thanks so much for the words and note, you!}

  22. Beautiful words, as always, sweet friend. It’s hard work finding out who you REALLY are and what makes you tick…it took me a LONG time to figure that out (and I’m still trying to figure it out).
    xo

  23. This is a beautiful post Galit and it so resonates with me. I nap although not as often as I would like or need. I appreciate your words that we don’t have to apologize for who we are because that’s who we are. And that you and Brody “puzzle piece”? Love.

  24. As always so wonderful. This “..and we puzzle piece” was beautiful. Yes, I can so see it.

    I am the opposite I hate being alone under any and all circumstances. I must always be with people. But still sometimes in the most crowded of rooms you can be alone. And that is what I struggle with.

    I am so glad that you are unapologetically you. It is such a beautiful you.

    • Thank you so very much, sweet friend.

      I so appreciate the “other side” perspective, and oh how wise you are with recognizing the lonely in a crowd; that one’s hard.

  25. I’ve always said that I could spend an entire day saying nothing to anyone except, “no thank you – just browsing.” Being an introvert makes managing the relentless assault of daily mothering an exhausting endeavor. So worth it – so rewarding – but EXHAUSTING.

    Well put Galit.

  26. It does sound breathtakingly amazing to not apologize for who you are. Love this post.

  27. I love this. I want to soak up these words. I need the gift of knowing who I am and not apologizing for it. I also need a nap. I sometimes feel like I am a split personality. I am extrovert to an extent but as I’ve gotten older and more settled with what I need, I have become a bit of an introvert that needs “me” time. I feel fulled up when I get time where no one needs me. I wonder what that says?

    • I think, it says that you’re getting to know yourself really, really well!

      {And that you’re lovely and real, which we already knew!}

      Thank you for the note and the words, friend!

  28. “Once you know what keeps you happy and sane and whole, and you choose to do these things, you have to be okay with the consequences and outcomes of your choices.”

    Oh, how perfect. I treasure this honesty and this reminder of living purposefully and intentionally as who you were made to be.

    And I also took naps everyday for the past three…almost four years, through my pregnancy and until my son just dropped nap a few months ago. I think that that loss of nap time was a much harder transition for me than it was for him.

    • Thank you so much – for getting it, for getting me, and for this: “living purposefully and intentionally as who you were meant to be.” Amen to that – love every single one of those words!

  29. Oh, yes! Yes. Yes. Yes. That line, “Once you know what keeps you happy and sane and whole, and you choose to do these things, you have to be okay with the consequences and outcomes of your choices”– I felt it. Oh, I need to print this now and hang it on my fridge. Wonderful post, Galit!

  30. I’ve only just stopped napping every single day and it’s only because my youngest is in school. I need to be “off” too and if I can’t get it while the kids are away, I need down time when they’re here. Sadly, the naps are slowly waning even when he is at home.

  31. Yes! Once you know yourself, you can be true to yourself.
    I also need those quiet moments to recharge. To relax, to be me.
    Being on all the time is hard and tiring.

  32. This is just lovely. I need to find that THING. The one that fills me up as you describe it here. Because I still struggle sometimes to find a balance/forgive myself when I allow fears to take over. I want to make that conference. I want to live fully in the moment. I want to savor each day as if it were my last.

    Maybe I’ll try taking a midafternoon nap 🙂

    XOXO

    • Thanks so much for the note, girl! I so love getting a slice of your thoughts!

      {Also? I so see you as a savorer! One more also? Naps are good. That is all. :)}

      xo

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