Introverts Are Also Struggling in the Quarantine
At this point, the days have all blurred into each other and today is March 31st but it’s really March 99th and nothing makes sense. I legit wished my cousin a Happy birthday, because he’s an April 1 baby. Imagine my SHOCK and AWE when I was told I was a day early. I was like “WAIT. IS IT STILL MARCH?” as if the calendar betrayed me and only me. How in the hell is it scientifically and quantumly possible for one month to be 3700 years long? Somebody gotta explain that shit to me because I’m lost.
I think I’m on week 3 of quarantine. I got a head start on most people because I was obsessively reading about COVID-19’s spread, and I trusted what I was seeing. I got in the house, stayed there and let folks side-eye me for ringing the alarm. People thought I was exaggerating or showing too much concern and I said I want to be proven wrong. I have never wanted to be as wrong as I was in the beginning of March. Bhet I started stocking up and started saying NAH to outside.
As an introvert, I figured this was my Olympics. You’re probably sitting there being like “Luvvie, you ain’t nobody’s introvert. With your loud ass.” To which I respond “shut your face.” People assume I’m an extrovert because of my persona. Because I’m not shy. Because I am a public speaker. But nah. None of those things have anything to do with it (Check out the piece the homie Damon Young wrote on this same topic: Introverts Hate This Shit Too, Y’all).
The difference between introverts and extroverts is how we receive energy, not how loud or shy we are. Let me give you an example:
An extrovert shows up to a party at an energy level 5. At the end of the night, they might be at energy level 8 because they get energized by interacting with others. You might find them at an after party, continuing to live their best lives. They’ll probably be out the next day too.
An introvert shows up to a party at an energy level 5. At the end of the night, they might be at a 2, because they give their energy to other people. You might find them in the house for the rest of the weekend, recharging. And for them, that is living their best lives.
I am not shy, and I can be very social. I can get on stages in a room of 2,000 and kill it. I can sign 200 books too, with a smile on my face. But afterwards, you can find me in my room, facing a wall because I’ve done my share of peopling and I ain’t got it for anyone anymore. I love my own company the most. And if not my own company, a small group is preferred. I’d rather be in the house with my friends for a game night than at a club ANY DAY.
So… when this pandemic was declared, introverts were like WE HAVE BEEN PRACTICING FOR THIS MOMENT ALL OUR LIVES! We ain’t gotta go to random places and deal with crowds? We don’t have to people? SWEET. We’ve been social distancing as a life mantra for a long time so we have more practice than most on staying put and not gallivanting everywhere all the time.
What we didn’t realize is that we like to isolate on our own terms! We like to ignore the world by choice! Not when it’s forced on us. We didn’t say we wanted to be locked in the house for months! Although too much peopling tires us out, we also still like fresh air, and the ability to venture outdoors without the fear of an invisible enemy. We like to take ourselves on dates and whatnots, even if we’re married (hey boo!).
So this worldwide lockdown is tough for even us, because too much of a good thing is no longer good. Like loving pasta and eating it 24/7/265. Your thighs will protest. Even those who like to cook right now gotta be tired of making 3 meals a day at this point. Same for those of us who like being inside. There is also no real end in sight so we gotta deal and sit here and eat our food.
And shoutout to those introverts who are quarantined with extreme extroverts. You know the folks who love constant contact with others? Parents with extroverted kids, you haz my sympathies right now too.
Long story short: most people are probably having a tough time right now in different ways, even those who like to be by themselves a lot.
P.S. Check on your extrovert friends, doe. They might not be okay at all.
How are y’all doing?