You know how some people fall distinctly into the "introvert" or "extrovert" category? I don't think I do. I think I must be a good mix of both.
People who know me would say, "You think you're an introvert? Are you nuts? No way, you're not even close!!" Because I can be loud, I can be silly, and I can certainly enjoy being in the spotlight at times. (especially if I've had a drink or two...) I love hanging out with my friends, going to parties, taking part in big social events in our community. I'm not afraid to speak publicly, and I enjoy being a bit of a clown.
But I don't like venturing too far from my comfort zone, and when I'm pushed, I tend to retreat. Instead of taking a deep breath and a big step forward, I'm far more likely to recoil, curl up in a ball, and sink into a hole. I hate walking in somewhere alone, I can be extremely self-conscious, and if I'm uncomfortable, my social awkwardness can escalate to ridiculous levels. There IS a reason I'm perpetually single, y'all.
Take, for example, the dilemma that is facing me tonight: joining a "just for fun" local curling league. I've been weighing the pros and cons for a few weeks now, trying to decide if this is actually something I want to do. The league started last year, just a bunch of Quyon folks getting together for some laughs, some fun physical activity, some drinks at the curling rink on Thursdays. I didn't join last year because I was already taking Zumba on Thursday nights, but all I heard were rave reviews about how much fun it was, and how much they all enjoyed it. I curled in a bonspiel with friends last February and had a lot of fun, so I thought maybe I'd join the league this year.
Now's the time. They start out with two weeks of "practice" before they start playing real games, and last week was the first week of practice. I weaseled out of the first week, so I need to decide if I'm going tonight, or not curling at all.
The pros: A bunch of my friends are taking part, and I know we'll have fun together. I always like sitting around at the curling rink and visiting. It would be a night out every week, especially at a time of year when there isn't much else going on. It's getting some exercise, which I desperately need more of in my life. It might be fun to learn the game so that I actually understand what's going on when my mom forces me to watch it with her on TV. And they serve the best burgers up at that curling rink...
The cons: This is the time of year when I like to hibernate, and I know that every week I'll be saying, "Ah shit. I have to curl tonight." Especially when it gets colder. I'll have to psych myself up to get out the door each week. I suck at curling, and I will never be an athlete, so whoever gets stuck with me will be carrying a constant burden all year. I don't know who's team I will be on, and even though I "know" everyone, I might not be with people I know all that well, and I'll feel awkward and backwards. Thursdays are normally my grocery nights, and while I might have time to do both, most weeks will be too cold to leave the groceries sitting in the car for a few hours while I curl. And also... I'm broke. I know the expense is minimal, but still... I'm broke. Always.
Really, I know that the decision is clear: all I need to do is decide if I want to be an introvert or an extrovert. As much as I love hanging out with friends, making plans with them, and having a good time, I also really like my time to myself, my solitude and my quiet. All these years of being single have turned me into a very selfish person. I like doing what I want, when I want, and nobody telling me otherwise.
If I decide to join the curling gang, I'll be making a commitment to stepping outside my little cocoon every week. I'll be forcing myself to do something that is out of my comfort zone; something that I'm quite sure I'll never be good at, no matter how hard I try.
So which am I... a homebody, or a curler?
An introvert, or an extrovert?
... I still don't know. *sigh*