Mar 112013
 

Amma up, no time to edit- so sorry. Love.

“To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.”  – Ralph Waldo Emerson

 

It’s 5:30 am and still dark out. It’s sort of dark and chilly inside, too. The coffee is making that ticking, bubbling sound it makes when it’s brewing. There are not many spans of time I need to move through faster than the span between I have no coffee  and that first sip.

When Chase was a baby, he was so chubby that he couldn’t move for a couple months. I just thought: “I guess that’s how babies look!” But I’ve seen a lot of babies in the past decade and none of them look like Chase looked. He couldn’t crawl – couldn’t move, even. That part was nice. He just sat and laughed. Here’s a baby picture.

Every time we took him to well checks, the doctor would show us his growth curve and inform us that he was “off the charts.”  I always took that to be a compliment.  but in retrospect, maybe not.

That’s how I feel- like I’m always off the charts- up, down, left, right – one way or another. Too dramatic. I’ve heard it my whole life. Mostly from the critic in my own brain.

I woke up this morning thinking maybe I’d tell you how I’m really feeling.  I still keep some feelings secret. Sometimes, even here, I feel like I can only go so far. I feel inappropriate. I have felt, my whole life – like I’m just a little too much.  Life, in all its bruty – other people, the sunset, dogs, coffee, music – these things threaten to explode my heart on a daily basis. I don’t know how to explain how I feel other than explosive. I also feel explosive in other ways. I almost exploded from anger at some other parents at Chase’s soccer game on Saturday. Yep, I had to pray my way through the entire game to stay dormant – and by the time I made it to the car- I had to let a few tears go to get myself back on the charts.

Thick skin must be nice to have. Skinless is a hard way to live. It’s probably hard to live with, too. But maybe it’s good in some ways, also. Maybe it’s easier for me to see and catch beauty – like my sensitivity means I’ve been given an extra wide butterfly net with especially strong netting. Life is about how you use what you got, right?

Even though I know that, I’ve spent a whole lot of my life trying to be different than I am at my core. Fighting my nature. Trying to be less sensitive. More social. Trying to climb back onto the charts. Dulling my intense feelings with whatever was nearest- wine, food, cigarettes, sex, whatever. I just wanted to be acceptable. I wanted to fit in. But I don’t know about that anymore.

I’m thirty six years old. And as I sit here in the dark this morning, I am realizing that in all the most important ways- I am still the same person I was when I was six. So maybe I am who I am for a purpose. And maybe I’m wasting my energy trying to be different. The book “Quiet” by Susan Cain is helping me understand this better.

Truth: I think that no matter how hard I fight it,  I am an incredibly sensitive, extreme introvert.

 

I can go days without speaking to anyone other than my family.

Craig always wants to travel – and I try to love the idea, but in the end it doesn’t really make sense to me. I can learn everything I need to know from the gas station attendant down the street –or from this book that ‘s rocking my world today – or from just staring at the ocean. Why travel? You can learn everything from anything.

I live in a retirement community. I call that an “accident” but, I mean, c’mon.

I’d rather give a speech to five hundred people than go to a party.

I feel most connected to humanity when I’m physically with no other human beings. Listening to a beautiful song, reading a gripping poem – looking at the sea. By myself.

I can write to you about my most personal things (marriage trouble, etc) but I find these things close to  impossible discuss out loud with my friends. Everything in writing, please.

 

I’ve forever felt like these things meant that something was wrong with me. My friends are mostly extroverts…and I didn’t understand how I could love them so much but really not need to see them all that often.  In a culture where GIRLS NIGHTS are supposed to be the holy grail of womenhood, I just felt like maybe I was less womanish than most. Anti-social, maybe.  I hate Girls’ Nights. There, I said it. I need my friends one on one. And I need them before eight pm. After eight pm is for the couch and  for TV and for books or it’s for bed. After eight pm is for turning into a pumpkin. It’s time to surrender to myself.

In honor of letting myself be myself –  Let me tell you my real feelings about this upcoming book tour.

I am scared- but not for the reasons you might think.

Truth- doing book signings sometimes feels like a little slice of hell to me.  At the last signing there were tons of Monkees in line. Monkees.  In a line. Doesn’t that seem off? And there were so many of them. One after the other. As far as I could see. Each with her own novel full of life chapters bursting inside of her. Pages and pages of triumphs and tragedies and comedies and horrors. I wanted to hear it all. I wanted to hear it all, from everyone. I am a student of this brutiful life and it was painfully clear to me as I sat in that stupid chair behind that stupid table that everyone in that line was my teacher.  And I had only a minute with each teacher. So I’d look into a woman’s eyes and I’d know from the electrically charged space between us that she was A MONKEE- someone who believed deeply in what was happening here- someone who recognized the truth here, someone who’d been changed by this place , someone who had been DOING LIFE with me and all the others here. Someone who had been catching these Hail Mary passes that my soul sends out every day. And so we’d hug over the table and cry a little and I’d try to write something in her book that would show her that I KNEW – that I was in this moment with her- that I wanted to run away with her actually, and hear her entire life story from start to finish with a bottomless cup of tea and a two cozy blankets. That even though I looked like I was on the charts- with my smile and regular appearance and heels and plain old words coming out of my mouth –  that inside my soul was completely off the charts. That my soul could see the strength and depth and height and width of her soul and wanted to just DANCE with her.

But we had a minute. And so every meeting felt like a missed opportunity.  Damn TIME and SPACE. How could we build this connection, this divine connection over five years and then only have one minute together? It felt absolutely hellish to me.

Hell is when the stupid boundaries of this physical world make it impossible to show how much you care.

Hell is Chronos when what you desperately need is Kairos.

Whenever something feels hellish to me, I try to consider the flipside of that experience, which points me to heaven. Part of my soul is rejecting this experience –so my soul must need something different, because Heaven is where our souls get what they need. And so all of a sudden, in this book signing context –  the idea of eternity made sense to me for the first time.

Eternity is for bottomless cups of tea and learning every little thing about each other. It’s the time and space for real intimacy with everyone. Heaven.

Anyway- this is what I was thinking about this morning.

I know. Off the charts. Whatevs.

Every day I discover more and more beautiful things. It’s enough to drive one mad. I have such a desire to do everything, my head is bursting with it.

Monet- via Jeanette LeBlanc

 

Love You-

G

 

PS. Listen- there was a moment during the last book signing that I will never forget. A Monkee who had traveled far to meet me and the other Monkees made it to the front of the line. She looked at me and leaned over towards me and so I leaned towards her. And she wiped at her nose and whispered, “G – do this.”  So I wiped at my nose. And I had a BOOGER.

This Monkee used her minute to tell me I had a booger. She looked at me and made a snap decision to take one for the team. To risk an awkward moment in the hopes of saving me from 100 more awkward moments.

THAT, my friends, is MONKEE LOVE.

PPS.  Grab a few Kairos moments today. Let the rest go.

G



Carry On, Warrior
Author of the New York Times Bestselling Memoir CARRY ON, WARRIOR
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  248 Responses to “Off the Charts”

  1. Nice post. I understand something alot more challenging on various blogs everyday. It’s going to consistently be stimulating to read content from other writers and practice just a little something from their store. I’d prefer to use some with the content on my blog regardless of whether you do not mind. Natually I’ll give you a link on your internet blog. Thanks for sharing.

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  2. I have read your blog on-and-off for the last few months, and I think I realized today, after reading a few more entries, that it has to be that way for me to soak in all the words you’re saying. That they feel like a great bubble bath of truth and hope and life that if I just sit and swirl around in long enough will wash the pain and filth of this brutiful life off my achy bones and ever-aching heart.

    That my too-muchness collides with your too-muchness and all at once I feel everything you are feeling + everything I am feeling and IT is too much for one person to bear, but I can’t help but want to bear it, so I have to do it in fits and spurts, in snatches of time stolen from other people, in those spaces when I feel like not a single soul surrounding me knows me the way this person whom I’ve never met and never even spoken with (until now) knows me.

    And then I read your words and they are yours and mine and a million others Monkees’ words, too, and I realize I was holding my breath to make sure that yes, I’m still alive and yes, I’m still here and yes, I’m still me and yes, it’s still okay.

    Thank you.

  3. G thang! Hmmm G string just popped into my heart? Can i call you G string? Bc you are sexy and raw and real and just enough yet over the top and not ashamed to let it all hang it out, butt dimples and all (figuratively speaking, since I have never seen your butt). Love love love this post. I sent you a nice long email about it, but I dont know if you ever get a chance to read your emails or who filters them for you etc. I just have to say, ditto ditto and ditto. Always felt like “too much”. always felt like I had to hold back. We just recently moved and i have become somewhat of a recluse (even though girl connecting is life giving to my soul- one of one is best), bc I am afraid I will be too much for people. I don’t know HOW to be fake. I don’t know how to tone it down or make it comfortable for everyone in the room. I don’t know how to not be me. But, I think I am learning that is a good thing. Bc, as you can see, SO many other people feel this way. We all hold parts of ourselves back and in doing so, we miss so much. In holding back, I could miss having encouraged someone who was feeling like a complete wack job and no one in the world would understand her….but if I had opened my mouth and shared my stream on consciousness that is always plugging along; she would have rejoiced! she would have felt better about herself!:) Most importantly, she would not have felt alone anymore. I am willing to risk foolishness and being misunderstood or judged or “stay away from that one” if it means helping the one who feel trapped in their bodies and heads and hearts but don’t have a voice or know a way to let it out. I want to help people feel ok being “too much”. Bc God made us the way we are, for a purpose. And with growth and maturity (or sometimes total imature craziness), we are able to breath hope into lives around us. We are able to laugh at ourselves. We are able to do hard things and help each other do hard things. And this is good. And it’s worth it to feel the way my brain often feels, if I can help but just one not feel alone today. Thank you for letting it all hang out for us- its beautiful (as I a sure your butt is as well :)).

    • um, I mean pooped into my head, not heart!

      • well flipping freaking wonder of wonders, nothing POOPED into my head. must.slow.down when I write. but- my brain just can’t…..

        • and ps again (see, the too much is coming out)
          my email was titled wrecked unto worship and its ALL ABOUT GRACE. and getting back up again. and being worth it. and the gospel of grace being AT THE CENTER OF IT ALL- even if we have to get up off of falling splat on our face 100 times a day. we will get it. we won’t give up. it’s gonna be worth it.

  4. This totally makes sense to me. All of it. I get it. Thanks for sharing like you do.

  5. You have described me. For 63 years.

  6. […] Off the Charts by Glennon Melton at momastery.com  ”Even though I know that, I’ve spent a whole lot of my life trying to be different than I am at my core. Fighting my nature. Trying to be less sensitive. More social. Trying to climb back onto the charts. Dulling my intense feelings with whatever was nearest- wine, food, cigarettes, sex, whatever. I just wanted to be acceptable. I wanted to fit in. But I don’t know about that anymore.”   This too came along at a very fortuitous time. Turns out, I’m an introvert disguised as an extrovert. Who knew? That explains A LOT.  […]

  7. As I commented on an earlier post (where the book Quiet was mentioned), I have called myself a gregarious loner my whole life. It’s nice to know there are more of us out there. We don’t need to all get together and *meet* or anything (?!), but it’s nice to know my weirdness has kindred spirits.

    Thanks for writing words that continually kindle that kindred flame.

    I had emailed you that, due to an unfortunate scheduling conflict, I won’t be seeing you on tour. But reading this, maybe that’s a favor to you! One less hellish minute to endure! Perhaps we must wait until eternity…

  8. I’m “Off the Charts” today and most days. I read your blog randomly, mainly when I feel “called”. It isn’t because I don’t like it, I love it, but it makes me feel too much. You hit home, too often. I can only face it randomly, when I am called. Thank-you for putting into words how I feel I walk through this world, with no skin and never quite fitting in. With that comes tremendous highs, and deep, deep lows. But you already know all that….

  9. I have the book “Quiet” too (though it’s in the “to read” pile). I read the Time magazine article about introverts and felt like it was speaking to me. That’s where I’m comfortable – in a quiet space, by myself, watching a movie, reading, playing on my phone, or napping. I get overwhelmed w/too much stimulus – my husband and in-laws are all talkers, laughers, constant stimulants so you can see where I would want to go and hide in the dark closet. Thanks G for the post.

  10. Hahahaha…..it was so serious and then I busted out laughing at your P.S. Love, love, love to you!

  11. Raw nerve here too. Been one all my life. Makes you feel itchy, squirrely, funny inside skin. I get it. So much so I bought myself books to understand myself better (and my kids who are too much like their oh-so-very sensitive mama). Have you discovered this site? This wonderful Dr. is pioneer in “highly sensitive” people and has written material I am finding to be validating and helpful as hell. Makes this rocky, zig zag lonesome journey a little bit brighter. Not less zig baggy, just illuminated ;)

    http://www.hsperson.com/

  12. What I would love is if you would do a survey and find out how many Monkees feel too sensitive for this world. It seems like we “overly” sensitive people are flocking here. I am sensitive to the extreme and feel exhausted really from all the emotions I careen through in a day.

  13. tears and a sigh. relief. reminded again. we are gifts and blessings. thank you G for your time and willingness to share, as scary as it is. thank you monkees. i too have one precious friend. she knows. i know. we go months without communicating. then one thought. one stir of our spirit and we connect like it was a moment ago. thank you God for your gifts of love, your Son and all the precious kindred spirits. i am humbled and truly blessed.

  14. Extreme introvert here, waving quietly and gratefully. Thank you for telling your truth, it is so often my truth too and it feels so nice to know I’m not the only one.

  15. Glennon, NO WAY – I am reading (re-reading, actually) Susan Cain’s book, too! And it is so comforting. Did you also find Introverts in the Church by Adam McHugh? Or Too Loud, Too Bright, Too Fast, Too Tight by Sharon Heller, PhD? Wonderful, both of them.

    When you wrote about all the missed moments, I almost jumped down here to say “Heaven! That’s when we’ll have all the time in the world to connect with all the people we missed here!!” but I wanted to finish reading what you wrote, and duh, you already KNEW heaven would be that!

    I am eager to meet you and have some long talks about being real, being too much, wanting to burst over the sight of a Japanese maple tree in October – and if we never get to here, then I’ll see you in heaven!

  16. Ah, G… This post (like most) really spoke to me. Lately my 7 year old has been going through some turmoil… like us, she is TOO SENSITIVE. She has been told by numerous people that she is too “feeling” and she needs to “push those feelings away”…. someone told her the other day, “you CANT CHANGE THE WORLD”…. so many things people have been telling to her go against what (she) and I feel.
    She has had a lot of loss lately. She is tiny. Only 7…. seriously, G… 7 is a baby still, right? I can’t get over the thoughts I have toward these people who are telling her (and me) these things…. some of these people are my friends, even. (talk about feeling weird.) I guess what you said resonated… You were MADE the way YOU ARE… i mean, God doesn’t make mistakes. She is struggling with anxiety and has seen 3 grandparents die in less than a year and well, death and life is scary… and NO COFFEE is scary. And why is it WRONG to feel that? Why on earth would we tell someone (a 7 year old) to PUSH THE FEELING AWAY???? I don’t want these feelings for her to linger… but~ we need to feel… we need to be real and work it out… we need to be able to cry and scream and be. She sees the beauty and she is the beauty. Thanks for sharing this post. It helps to reassure me that NOT EVERYONE thinks that being “sensitive” is a bad thing. Monkee on, Monkee warrior.

  17. I was in Raleigh for The Gathering. I ended up leaving early on Saturday. I just felt too far out of my comfort zone… and there was WINE. IN CHURCH. Like… hello! That should DEFINE my comfort zone. But I felt like there were so many huge stories and we all had so much to offer… it was too much to bear and I left in tears, feeling quite like a coward. I came back home and read my favorite posts of yours, and I felt a little better. Then, I read your new post about Gail and thought… what if I had stayed and taken Glennon’s time and she had not heard Gail’s story. Then, I saw the flash love mob and felt a LOT better. I got the feeling I was looking for at The Gathering. Now I realize… big groups aren’t my thing. I knew I wasn’t “alone” because there were Monkees as far as my eye could see, but I do better behind the computer where I can read it or write it first. All this for what it’s worth. Thanks for writing, G. LOVE!

  18. I could not agree more about being an introvert. I, too, could and do go days just talking to my family. My husband and youngest get a bit stir crazy after a day or two but not me and my oldest. Parties? Ugg. My idea of hell. One on one is great.

  19. I have been following you for some time though I never comment. Just had to today. You wrote exactly how I feel. I just read Quiet a few months ago and it was life changing for me. I finally realized I am who I am and I am ok with that. Actually…I am more than ok with it, I love it! So freeing to know that I am not alone. Thank you for also not liking girls nights out. :)

  20. I always felt uncomfortable not wanting to go to “girls nights out” when I did get the courage I felt out of place always the third wheel. Thanks for making me feel not alone. I watch my daughter and know she has introvert tendencies I didn’t know it came from me. Going to buy Quiet right now.

  21. Your concept of eternity aligns well with notions of time from theoretical physics. If you are inclined, check out Fabric of the Universe on Nova (PBS). Realizing we are stuck in chronos–but with a foretaste of the blessed kairos to come–gives us patience to persevere and remain alert for the signs of eternity. All the best, Glennon.

  22. My husband is a touchy, feely extrovert; I’m a very extreme introvert. I explained it to him like this:

    Humans are like rechargeable batteries — positive and negative. Extroverts recharge by interacting with others; they spend their energy on solo persuits. Introverts expel huge amounts of energy by interacting, and recharge on being alone. For those introverts who work all day, then spend all night with kids and spouses and activities and neighbors and community events, we need those alone times to recharge, or we crash. Hard. I swear I would be a basket case without my Kindle.

    It’s not that I don’t like people — I do! I love people! Some of my best friends are people! ;) But being around people is not effortless, especially more than one or two. You’re so very, very not alone. (Then again, are ANY of us, ever?)

    • Sharyn,
      My husband and I are the opposite of you and your husband. I am a touchy, feely extrovert and he is an introvert. He spends all day at an extrovert job and then comes home to three loveably loud children and a wife who sometimes hasn’t talked to an adult all day. If I can remember to give him ten minutes when he walks in the door and shoo him away after dinner, then he gets some recharge time. When I pay attention to his need to recharge alone, then he can pay attention to my need to talk and be touched. It’s all about learning who you are, who are the people in your life, and being true to yourself and each other. Hopefully you show your husband who you truly are and he pays attention. What more could you ask for (except a quiet bath now and then)?

  23. I really hear you on the feeling too much, the explode-your-heart feeling. I went to a screening of a movie last night that was so incredibly moving and just so so so on the Monkee/Momastery wavelength. It was called Girl Rising and it told the story of 9 girls from 9 different countries and their struggles to find education and make better lives for themselves. The stories were incredible, and a good reminder that instead of prattling on about what preschool or elementary school my girls will go to, I should be thankful that they have a school to attend at all. I am not affiliated with the movie or the organization but wow did I find it powerful. The site is http://www.girlrising.com

  24. I love that you are reading Susan Cain’s quiet. I just finished it upon the recommendation of a psychologist “friend” (i.e. my own therapist). It has been profoundly interesting in helping me to understand my son, who is a spirited and gregarious little charmer with sharp introverted tendencies. I’m so sorry for the difficult time you experiencing. I’m learning that everyone has a big pile of s__t that he or she steps in at some point throughout his or her life. Some people’s piles are bigger, or they smell worse than others’ piles. Some of us are just more sensitive to it, so that it seems like we’re alone in our pile, but these piles are unavoidable. I’m in the middle of one myself. You can’t pretend it’s not there – it’s too stinky. You must acknowledge it and grieve over it. I just have to remind myself every day that at some point I will be able to step out of it and clean off my shoes, even if just a little bit. Best regards.

  25. Thanks Glennon. I will try for my Kairos moments… I am extra sensitive today; so — making note of those special moments is a helpful reminder. Thanks for it all.

  26. Last night I was sitting in my rocking chair, nursing my 5 month old baby and I was locked in chronos…exhausted from the repetition that is my life. See, I also am mom to twin girls 22 months old. And wow, it’s brutiful. And I saw on someone’s instagram that they were on vacation in San Fransisco and I cried and felt sorry for myself. For the “break” I feel I need so badly but won’t be getting any time soon. All I could feel was the weight of the chronos and I was in Hell. I was longing for Heaven, for Kairos and it seemed out of touch. I sat there feeling the weight of my efforts to control, of my longing for perfection, of my need for connection. Trying to make miracles happen and forgetting the grace of just doing the footwork. A hard moment. A Hell moment, as you say. This post turned my day around. Brought me into the groundedness and reality of Kairos. I had lots of Kairos today and I just LET THE REST GO. Thank you for this post. And I want to share this (oldie) song with you…someone who I think really “got it”, the way I see that you get it. And it brings the connection I’m longing for to find others who “get it”.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5Jj0ZTzgmGM

    “And there’s a loyalty that’s deeper
    Than mere sentiments
    And a music higher than the songs
    That I can sing
    The stuff of Earth competes
    For the allegiance
    I owe only to the Giver
    Of all good things

    So if I stand let me stand on the promise
    That you will pull me through
    And if I can’t, let me fall on the grace
    That first brought me to You
    And if I sing let me sing for the joy
    That has born in me these songs
    And if I weep let it be as a man
    Who is longing for his home”

    And I see now, last night, I cried as I was longing for Heaven. And this somehow set me free today. It made me whole. It brought me joy.

    (Can’t wait to see you in Denver next month! And someday sit and chat with you for an eternity…)

    • Thanks for posting this link. Rich Mullins captures the brutiful in life better than most. Why I always loved his music.

    • Hang in there Lorissa! I know that feeling all too well. You are definitely in the trenches with those sweet babies of yours. It brings tears to my eyes remembering how I felt during those baby days but also makes me even sadder knowing they are over for me. I pray you will get much needed time for yourself soon. One day at a time girl. Take care and love to you!

  27. Glenn-
    I am 23 and traveling to see you in Seattle this April and have been so anxious about what the heck I should do when I finally get to meet you. Firstly I feel a little younger and less-wise than some other Monkees on here and that is intimidating. And sweet Glennon, as honest and graceful and humble as you are, I lookup to you so much that feeling intimidated seems inevitable. On the flip side of that though, I am painfully aware that this book experience is not at all about me but about the love and community that it cultivates. It’s about the Monkees miracle. And I don’t want my insecurities to distract from that. But what do I do in April?? How do I best spend my one minute with the woman who I feel God has brought into my life to be the big sister I never had??
    …I suppose I’ll let God and grace decide that for me.
    So much love to you, you brave, kind, gorgeous warrior!

    • …sorry ’bout the grammatical/spelling errors. Never have been a fan of editing. Always have been a fan of re-reading. Not the most efficient of ways to go about life.

  28. As an introvert who has spent most of her life trying to fit in with this extrovert-valuing culture we live in, Susan Cain’s book was SUCH a breath of fresh air to me! Loved it. And tell everyone I know to read it. We all know introverts. And it’s time for us to say ‘this is who I am. This is OK. There are LOTS of us and we do really GOOD things!’

  29. It’s good to know so many others feel the same as me. I was (and I guess still am) a fake extrovert. Unfortunately society kind of forces us to be extroverted even if it’s completely against our nature. The book “Quiet ” finally made me see that it is not bad to be introverted.

  30. That happened to me when I met Julie Andrews at a book signing. 30 seconds just wasn’t long enough for us to swap life stories!!!

    Thank you for being real. You’ve encouraged me to be brave enough to be real, even when I feel off the charts and inappropriate.

  31. This post really spoke to me! Since I was young I have felt like I can’t always fit in to most groups. I had friends, but never felt a real need to put myself out there. I was always sort of on the edge of any group of friends. I had, and still have a hard time connecting with many people. I was also painfully shy to boot. I would rather spend my time sitting and reading a book, drawing, listening to music, going on a long bike ride, and most definitely hanging out by myself. I spent so much time alone and was content. I need it. It helps me to decompress, to think things out, to make plans, to dream, to rest my worrying mind. When I don’t get my “me time” I get super cranky. It’s funny…in my late 20s I moved to a new city and partied quite a bit. Nothing too crazy, but I definitely had a social butterfly phase. I had alot of fun, but eventually I got bored with it, burned out. I stopped going out, I hibernated alot. The friends that I made complained that I had changed…what they didn’t know was that the quiet me was more ‘me’ than they had ever known! And when I got married and had a baby, one of the hardest things to me to adjust to as a mother was the total and complete stripping of personal time and space. No one tells you about that. I mentioned it to a friend, that it was difficult for me and she looked at me like I had three heads. I, too, get my thoughts and feelings out on paper so much better than in person. I remember that I used to be a big letter writer if I had something important I wanted to convey to someone. I learned to overcome my shyness for the most part, but I will always be an introvert and I’m ok with that. :-) Sorry for the rambling, not-so-eloquent response. The ‘spring forward’ always makes me sleepy. :-)

    • Cathy,

      Don’t stop writing letters! If you have stopped begin again. Not emals but written, folded, envelop stuffed and stamped thoughts and considerations. When a person opens a letter they envison you taking time and effort on their behalf. Letters to people you love and care about are powerful extensions of that love and caring. They will treasure them forever.

      Bubba

  32. Well G, I was bitterly disappointed you weren’t coming to SoCal with your book tour, but reading this – I feel a little better. Maybe it’s better I don’t supply you with a hellish minute across the table. Besides, I would probably be crying or tongue-tied or who-knows-what and then feel sad I didn’t have any kind of meaningful conversation with you. When I first read your blog I told you I couldn’t wait to meet you in Heaven – maybe we’ll just have to wait til then.

  33. You are not off the charts, you just have your own chart and there are some of us that are more like you than you think. Please love yourself for who you are, because you are indeed blessed by God’s grace.

  34. Glennon,

    I was just thinking today about how I need to stop trying to be different than what I am and just fully accept myself fully. I’ve been accepting parts of me for the last ten years, but enough is enough already. I love me, all of me. I know I’ll waver at times, but here I will not be afraid of self-acceptance anymore. Because I am essentially who I was at 6 too, and you know what, she was a sweet, shy, smart girl who was a afraid of new things but who had a lot of love to give. Here I am, world. Thanks, G., for opening me up to myself through your own truth.

  35. Makes me think of how my Mom once called me intense, and meant it as “way too!” and in the same day my off-the-charts friend called me intense and meant it as the hugest compliment she could give. Might as well just be me since the world isn’t in agreement whether its good or bad anyway, right???

  36. I have that book checked out from the library but haven’t had one minute to crack it yet. I’m even more excited about it now! So much of what you wrote today describes me. Thank you for sharing about people like us.

  37. This post has had me thinking about personality types all day. I know about the Keirsey Temperament Sorter, and it has helped me understand myself so much more. I am not an introvert, but I love a few, and the vulnerability of their hearts always amazes me. I am an ENTJ (extrovert-intuitive-thinking-judging), and I would have to guess that G is maybe an ISFP (introvert-sensing-feeling-perceiving). If you’re interested, you can look up the test, or just read some of the personality type descriptions to find what sounds true for you.

  38. I. Love. This.

    I have those moments with people and have the worst time expressing what it’s like.

  39. Arrgh – high sensitive extreme introvert. This momma needs her spring break to come quickly!

  40. Hell is Chronos when what you desperately need is Kairos.

    I swear I’m going to cross stitch this and hang it on my wall. I just read “Quiet” last week, and I can relate to everything Cain wrote. As a wife, mother, high school teacher, and spouse of a pastor who’s also a highly sensitive , I long for true Kairos.

    Hang in there Glennon, and thanks for articulating so well what so many of us feel.

  41. Thank you for writing this with such honesty, such vulnerability. I’m with you on the preference for tea and touching our toes under the blanket while we tell stories, cry, and hand each other tissues. But it is your willingness to come out from under the blankets, to lay aside the Twizzlers and the remote, and venture out into the world to see us and sign books – that’s why so many people love you and line up to see you. That’s why we give money to Monkee See, Monkee Do so that women’s lives can be changed forever. Because you have shown us how to step out of your comfort zone. You model for us how we can step out of our comfort zones and love the world, even when that is the last thing we want to do.

    And then the whole world shines so bright and brutiful and draws in so close to my soul that I can hardly stand it. I sometimes have to turn away from prayer and writing, from friends and family, from art and books because the glory of it, the depth, the beauty truly is overwhelming. I simply cannot take it in large doses.

    Gotta love the Monkee who tells you about having a booger. That is a true friend.

    • TODAY WAS GAIL’S LAST DAY OF HEALING SESSIONS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • How ya feeling, Sister?? Congrats on your last day. What are you doing to celebrate?

      • I’m feeling pretty happy about it being behind me, but I also am trying to be realistic about the hellish two weeks that tend to follow each treatment. The best part is looking forward to ongoing improvements, changes that continue beyond the usual three weeks between treatments.

        I celebrated some over the weekend with a little retail therapy at the mall.
        I enjoyed cheesecake and cannoli with the family last night – definitely not on the “how to beat kanswer” food list, but it was mighty delicious.
        Some journal-making and journal-filling today.
        Lots and lots of gratitude that I have made it this far. There were times when I wasn’t sure I would get out of this alive and in my right mind.
        Plus a little dancing in the chemotherapy treatment room when the infusion was over.

  42. I love this SO FREAKING MUCH, Glennon. I only have one question… how do you consistently get inside my head? Heh.

    Please keep on being too much.

  43. The last “Girls Nights” I went to,I broke out in hives! One on One is fine. 2-4 is rough,5+ is hell.
    People think I would be used to large groups because I come from a VERY large family. But the fact is when I was young I would slip away to a quiet place. Being in a group makes me exhausted & jittery at the same time and usually takes a day to get over.

  44. I am so grateful everytime I read your words and know that I am not alone in how I am. I have actually been too nervous to make arrangement to be at one of your book signings because I am afraid I will feel like one person in a million with a second to tell you how much your words have meant for me. It will ruin my imaginary friendship with you where we get together for coffee instead of going to the gym. Thanks for all you share and for being so brave and honest for those of us who can’t be. I hope someday to have the courage to meet you face to face and just appreciate that moment!

    • P.s. I have a junior monkee and she is off the charts too! I want so badly to save her from it but maybe I should just let her be. Ever want to tell your kids Don’t be like meeeee!

  45. I find it refreshing that I’m not the only one that hates “Girl Nights”..I never really understood them. I love my friends. I have lots of great friends. However, I’d rather spend the evening with my husband, and our daughters doing nothing, something, anything..whatever! I also had my best “girlfriend” in my lobster—my sister! She’s all I need.

    So, G, you are not weird or off the charts! There are so many of us “girls” that don’t need “girl nights”, and also feel closest to others thru writing.

    Warrior on!

    • Oh, yeah and I forgot…I don’t need to travel either! People think I’m crazy because I don’t want to “see the world”….got everything I need already!

  46. Reminded me of one of my favorite CS Lewis quotes:

    “If I find in myself desires which nothing in this world can satisfy, the only logical explanation is that I was made for another world.”

    Where love has no limits, even time & space!

  47. You know what, G? Your authenticy is so beautiful, it doesn’t need any editing! xo

  48. How refreshing it is to come to a space each day where we are all embraced and loved more, not in spite of our flaws, but because of them. When I check the weekly postsecrets, my feeling is so similar – that it is healing. More than anything else, these communities continuously heal me. I wrote here very personally about my battle with severe clinical depression:

    http://stumpsandbeans.com/2013/02/28/breaking-the-silence/

    I think “skinless” really describes how I spent many years of my life… until the last ten years when I couldn’t take it anymore and devoted my energy to growing a skin and thickening it up. I don’t know if that is empowering or tragic, but I think it was probably necessary.

    Once again, thank you for sharing

  49. Thank you for your honesty. This is why people love you, including me. I am saving your book, because I need a standby for those hard times. I have had plenty and know you are going to help me muddle through the next one.
    Sharing a thought. I have lots of amazing crazy friends because I am a crazy extrovert, but one of them when I was 19 said she told everyone at a party she masturbated, this was 1989, kind of crazy to have the courage to admit that at her age…I wasn’t so open yet! She then said it was like she showed her fleshy white underbelly to the whole room who then descended upon her with their fangs. What you do by putting it out there all the time congers up the same image and I remember R putting it out there and I will always have so much respect for her intelligence and courage.
    SEcond thought…That self same woman had a mother who ran a post partum depression hotline for women struggling with isolation etc. That would have been in the 70’s. I feel like the mommy blogs of today are the hotlines of the 70’s connecting people, women, mothers, making people feel less alone and supported. You carried me through a hell year where I was fighting to save my baby. Thank you for your support.xoxo

  50. Man…………..excuse me while i wipe the tears away,man G ..awhile back I posted a comment to another Monkee who said that, that days’ Momstary entry was the best ever, I agreed that one was indeed a great post, but the best is always the next one you write, at least to me.
    This morning again proves to me that point.!!!
    You seem to have the ability as a writer and a person to laser right into the heart of the matter…
    I wanted to shout out …. me to ..G me to.. because finally I realized that I’m not alone there are others like mmaybeyeb many others, in how I am,….as having the same traits you described.All of them.
    Yes, even as a little kid,people would often refer to me,at that time as the “over sensitive one.”..[ I was a twin] not just as the sensitive one, and over the years it has taken me a long time to accept that..Hell yea, thats who I am..
    God Bless You G, you leave me gut punched and wordless ..Amen to the no- skinned ones..
    Again thanks for sharing your soulful insights with us…..PS…. I was also wondering about how you would feel at those book signings for the same reasons you disclosed. .Good day to you mam.

  51. Just came to this line in Steinbeck’s “East of Eden:”
    “As with many people, Charles, who could not talk, wrote with fullness.
    He set down his loneliness and perplexities, and he put down on paper many things he did not know about himself.” So fitting!

  52. […] This beautiful (or, as she would say, brutiful) post by Glennon on […]

  53. You know, I’m beginning to think you are walking around inside my head, just picking and choosing which thoughts ‘we’ should share. Although, I appreciate traveling, I find it to stressful. That being said, the occasional escape to a beach alone, carrying nothing but a bagful of books, a journal and a soulful of thoughts, would be amazing. A night with my besties or a GNO? Let’s sit on the couch until the wee hours of the morning, laughing until we cry, or crying until we laugh. THAT’S my idea of time well-spent! I do love DMB concerts though. It’s a weakness of mine, and I fully intend to die dancing right there in the front row, when he is far too old to be playing and I am too old to be dancing!

    Anyway, I digress. I am about halfway through ‘Carry On, Warrior’, (started last night at 10pm, PST) and it’s already my favorite book. Ever. It’s. Off. The. Charts.

    Can’t wait to have a minute with you soon. And I would totally cut in front of everybody to tell you that you had a booger in your nose :-)

    xo,
    Nancy

  54. Me too! I can relate to all of this…except for the travel! Oh, would I like to escape somewhere for a long weekend and just give myself quiet time…away from the to-do lists, the noise, the oh-so-big lovely family that my husband and I have who constantly want to spend time with us {ahem-our daughters-do they ever really want to see us anymore when we have kids :)}

    My biggest fear/challenge is that my 3 year old daughter is so much like me: introverted and sensitive. Hyper-sensitive actually and receiving occupational therapy for it. I am fearful because I don’t want her to struggle with confidence in this big bold extroverted world in the way I do/did (working on finding a balance-loving myself for who I am more and more each day)! I don’t want her brain to wrestle with a million thoughts going on at once. I don’t want her to be an over-acheiver in people pleasing. I want her to be confident about the choices she makes, I want her to know what a kind heart she has, I want her to love herself, I want her to know that it is okay to say not to others and “yes” to yourself sometimes, I want her to know that GOD MADE HER SENSITIVE FOR A REASON-IT IS A STRENGTH; NOT A WEAKNESS! I want to believe this about myself as well!

    To the Monkee on Glennon’s Facebook page that recommended Ann Voskamp’s 1000 Gifts as a favorite book to read THANK YOU-it has been a life changer for me in regards to all of this!

    • tara,

      i have a highly sensitive three-year-old daughter as well. i’d LOVE to talk to you. dealing with much of what you wrote about. please email me, if you can.

      !!!

      bethany cates.

      ([email protected])

  55. Thank you for sharing. And carry some tissues and a little pocket mirror for goodness sakes. (I poke at you, you know). That made me LOL. I am an observer. I like to sit back and watch the conversation and the flight of the bumble bees (mostly because people won’t shut up and let others talk). Ugh. A few good friends is much better than a wide circle of friends. Lately I just keep to myself. You are still a rock star and I refuse to call you booger affectionately. No. I won’t.

  56. 70,000 people exist who don’t think you’re too much–we think you’re just right, G. :)

  57. One moment…one song: “I’m Sensitive” by Jewel.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fd7bgCyRva4

    Keep your heart on the outside ….and look around today. Many of us have love dripping from our sleeves….

  58. Have you read the article 9 Signs That You Might Be an Introvert? It cracks me up because I do ALL of these things and never associated it with being an introvert.

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/sophia-dembling/nine-signs-that-you-might_b_2251932.html?utm_hp_ref=fb&src=sp&comm_ref=false

    I go back and read it all the time just to make myself feel better about not answering my ringing phone! Enjoy!

    • This is too funny, I’ve never seen this list before so checked it out. I’ve been thinking since my post earlier on this thread – I love to be alone – comfortable with my own company. But then I’m ADHD when I’m alone – I’m crafting, I’m baking cookies, I’m watching TV, I’m Googling anything and everything that pops into my brain that I’m questioning about something/someone. All at the same time, all over the map. And at the end of the day, I can say “well, I had a rather productive day!” And close my eyes with a smile on my face! :-) I’m weird, I know. But at least this behavior is justified on the list!! Which makes me feel “normal!” Thanks, Amy!

  59. http://m.youtube.com/#/watch?v=O8Xu8VpmdYc&desktop_uri=%2Fwatch%3Fv%3DO8Xu8VpmdYc

    This is a song that is off the charts….the world exploded in love all around me

    It’s a favorite of mine. Lots of love, amelia

  60. Thank you for this post, Glennon. I hope you know how brave you are to put your words – truths – out there for all the world to read. Your words and posts DO matter. I read this today and it was exactly what I needed. I, too, feel everything so intensely. I always heard “get a thicker skin” growing up. I’m not an introvert, but I do tend to keep my deepest of truths to myself because of the fear of ridicule. To be rejected at your core for who you are hurts like no other. And here you are shouting them from the rooftops. Bravo, Glennon. Bravo! You are a Brave One and inspire me to be more brave. To me, sharing that much feels like inviting everyone into my bathroom to see me standing naked while the shower warms up. I would rather DIE. My prayer for you (and me) is that you treat yourself gently. The world is brutiful and you’ve got to protect that beautiful skin of yours. My question to you – how on earth do you balance your sensitivity with motherhood? I find it so hard and want to build a cocoon around him to shield him from any hurt. XOXO

  61. Me too, G! Thank you so much. I needed to hear this so badly today. Right now. So many times lately I have taken comfort in the fact that you are feeling the same things I am feeling. Thank you!

  62. Ladies….know that one of the joys of entering your fifties is coming to a place of acceptance with yourself. Just. As. You. Are. It feels GOOD to finally get to that place.
    I have also read “The Introvert’s Way” and found it to be wonderful in accepting yourself as an introvert.
    Love your blog Glennon, and appreciate someone being able to put into words all that chaos that rolls around in my thoughts!

  63. Amen, G.

  64. I love that book Quiet and I so get this post! But Quiet was only one piece of the puzzle for me…I have neurological different wiring and neurological diseases too…and weirdly they can sometimes go together!:) What helped me get to the right path was the Highly Sensitive Person by Elaine Aron, then Too loud, Too Bright, Too fast, Too tight By I forget:) and then finally this test:
    http://rdos.net/eng/Aspie-quiz.php
    press I accept, fill out the basic info and press start test…it’s a lot of questions so make sure you have time ( I liked it cuz quizzes are FUN!:) Forgive me if it bothers you if I say that I think you may be borderline ASpie girl (which is SO DIFFERENT from Aspie man:)…or close to borderline Aspie…not full fledged…but there is a reason I think why I can relate so much to you…or maybe it is just the highly sensitive traits…I don’t know.
    Maybe try two chapters of Aspergirls by Rudy Simone….and if you don’t feel it- don’t finish it…but I think you would love her writing even if you are not an Aspie:) You will probably chuckle and cry…If you have time I would love for you to read it…I liked it better than Quiet:) because of the laugh factor and easygoing style but Quiet was stellar too!:)
    I hope you get downtime on your next tour!

    • I have had the second two of those three books recommended to me. In my case, the sensitivities seem to be product of my fibromyalgia. The “fibro fog” and ADHD keeps me from sitting down and getting them read. I’m sitting here jotting the titles down again, hoping that will help (until I lose the piece of paper). Thanks!

      • I understand. I have Fibromyalgia but I always thought it was a product of my other stuff:) Although genetically my aunts (on both sides) and mother have it too so I did not stand a chance!:) Oh Fibro Fog and chronic fatigue. Sometimes it is a feat to get out of bed!:) I also have ADHD but it goes under the heading of Aspeger’s syndrome too. In fact many things do ( ADD, fibro, anxiety, Idealism, Introvertish, deep thinker, sometimes dyslexia or dyspraxia…not meaning to scare you but often these things go hand in hand…because aspie ness starts in the frontal part of the brain where fibro also is and some of these things…and sometimes because of HIGH SENSORY overload – ADD and anxiety naturally happen because the brain is in an almost constant state of over arousal. My therapist says that often a comborid of these issues go together but it varies for different people.)
        THe Rudy simone book tied it all in for me. Sometimes I struggle with the fact that I am slightly on the autism scale and other times I am so proud of it. We have high intellectual capabilities but are often stuck in our own bodies and sensory issues. I try to embrace what I can and make the best of it. But even though it was hard- searching for my own answers and tying it all together for self understanding was the BEST thing I ever did for myself ( even though facing yourself and your limitations and admitting your gifts can be hard)
        Good luck! If you have any questions feel free to connect. I also have other titles that may be of interest to you:)

        • I’m sorry, Audrey, I never saw this. I’m pretty sure there is no way to get notified if someone replies to you on here, but I’ll have to ask Glennon about that.

          I’m not offended, and I am intrigued. I asked a doctor that, once, if I might has Asperberger’s, and she literally waved me off. Worth looking into (if/when I remember for five minutes!) Thanks.

  65. Me too. ME too. MEEEE TOOOO!!!!

    Especially: I am most connected to humanity when I am all by myself staring at the ocean. What’s hardest, is that I haven’t had a moment to stare at the ocean in a long long time. So I run on fumes, scraping by on whatever I can cling to in a day – responsibility to my kids – and hope one day, there will be a moment by the ocean.

    Thanks for being you. Quiet is great.

  66. “Quiet” was a life changing book for me. It was one of those moments when you realize, “I’m not broken, so I can stop trying to “fix” myself.”

    I’ll second the recommendation of “The Highly Sensitive Person” by Elaine Aron. It’s another game- changer. Total relief to understand why my interior life is just so. much. more. than most people. Really just cannot recommend it enough.

    • Thanks for the reminder of that book. I might have it around here somewhere but have never gotten to it. Or maybe I had it out from the library and renewed it too many times.

  67. There are more of us kindred souls out there than you probably realize – and that’s because we are all happier in our own, quiet space, and can find it hard to take in the “noise” of the world. G, your honesty and courage in saying it out loud & then writing it down …for all of us to inhale is stunning! Really! Thank you G for being the truth teller you are. I think God made us sensitive, introverts the way we are, in order to offer that very necessary balance to the rest of the world!

    p.s.Your book tour will be glorious and just a tiny taste of eternity and those endless cups of tea….xox

  68. You are THE BEST blogger. I freaking love your honesty. I rarely leave the comfort of my Google Reader to leave a comment like this, but I just felt like I had to say it to you today.

  69. I Love you G. We may never meet but you are my sister. Thank you sweet friend.

  70. G – I absolutely love you. You have made me feel less alone in this world. Thank you for your honesty and humor and love.

  71. This is so funny. I always wonder about women who wear high heels on the weekend and who don’t sit with one of their legs tucked under them, because I cannot relate whatsoever. It sometimes makes me think I haven’t become a “grown up” yet, and that one day I will remember that I wore makeup that day and not rub my eyes, or I won’t have to make up and excuse for why I saw the dog spill his food bowl and was too lazy to clean it up (he will eat it, eventually). When someone asks if I want to go do something that weekend, I often picture myself on my couch, cuddling with my dogs and hubs, and weigh the two. It’s always very close, so I say I’ll get back to them…I use this time to consider if I’ve had enough time at home that week that I won’t dread going someplace. Even when I say yes, I sit there and miss my dogs and always take advantage of a situation where I can move the party to my house :)

  72. If you ever come to SoCal, I will be first in line. Thanks for the affirmation this morning.

  73. Hi G,
    Read an amazing book this weekend that so connects to your post today. Please read “Dying to Be Me” by Anita Moorjani.
    S

  74. Thank you so much for this post. My house was robbed last week and it just reminded me that this world is not my home. I can’t wait to meet you. And I can’t wait to tell you all about my story when we have all the time we want in heaven. I totally get why the book signing was hellish to you.

  75. I’m not sure if you think this is applicable, but have you ever read about the work of Kazimierz Dabrowski, a Polish psychiatrist and psychologist? The idea of overexcitabilities is attributed to him. Overexcitabilities are inborn intensities indicating a heightened ability to respond to stimuli. “Found to a greater degree in creative and gifted individuals, overexcitabilities are expressed in increased sensitivity, awareness, and intensity, and represent a real difference in the fabric of life and quality of experience.” You’ll find more info on the SENG website, and others, if you want to take a look.

  76. I was just saying to my husband last night that I finally understand about myself that I would prefer to have a few deep friendships than be a part of a big social circle. I am also learning that not everyone wants that type of relationship so I need to manage my expectations as well. I also hate the idea of a big “girls night” unless it is with a few close friends that I know well and enjoy spending time with. I have always ironically thought of myself as an extrovert because I like people, but perhaps I am more introverted than I previously thought. Thanks for giving me something to think about today.

  77. I’ll be in Indy to hear you. I’ll have gotten your book by then. I never understood autographs from anyone ….why that’d matter to have, why I’d ever need that. I recognize they do matter to a lot of fols, and through the comments here, even learned more about that.

    That being said, I’ll be happy to listen and leave. Going by myself, happily…soaking in all the light if that time..

    One less Monkee waiting in line :-)

  78. Love you G- once again you said everything I feel. I will embrace liking to be alone instead if feeling like there is something wrong with me. Peace and love.

    P. s. the booger lady rocks-

  79. As I read your post, I wonder if you are familiar with the enneagram. If not, I highly recommend the book by Richard Rohr and Andreas Ebert called The Enneagram: A Christian Perspective. You seem to be a “4” personality type. This book has great insight, hope and helps with the struggles and strengths of each personality type. I think you would find studying the enneagram fascinating.

  80. “The final (and only) act of healing is to accept that there is nothing wrong with you.”

    ~~Robert Holden, Ph.D.

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