“Extroverts want us to have fun, because they assume we want what they want. And sometimes we do. But “fun” itself is a “bright” word, the kind of word that comes with flashing lights and an exclamation point! One of Merriam-Webster’s definitions of “fun” is “violent or excited activity or argument.” The very word makes me want to sit in a dimly lit room with lots of pillows—by myself.”
-Laurie A. Helgoe, Introvert Power: Why Your Inner Life Is Your Hidden Strength
It is undeniable that dog owners tend to have dogs which reflect themselves.
You have seen those comparison pictures, where the Winston Churchill doppleganger is sitting next to his English bulldog, sporting matching jowls. Or the svelte art gallery curator with the Afghan Hound companion. Dogs are delightful companions in life, and it only makes sense that we would seek out like minded individuals to accompany us. It would be absurd to introduce a Border Collie into your home if you are more on the homebody side; likewise, a person who enjoys hiking every weekend will find a corgi rather cumbersome on the trails.
Which is why I found a Pomeranian for my home.
Pomeranians are intelligent, playful, friendly, and wonderfully mischievous. They are definitely more of an extrovert than any other dog I can think of, and require balanced and regular socialization.
They adore you, your family, your friends, your friends’ friends, your friends’ dogs, their friends, the cat, the UPS driver, the UPS driver’s friends and every person they meet when you go for a walk.
They are an active breed, but not too active. They would love nothing more than to go for long walks, run up the stairs, play fetch, run around the yard, hide behind trash cans or attempt to climb a tree.
For a few minutes.
And then they are done. And they need to recharge.
I completely understand the need to love everyone around me, sometimes a little too much (“You can stop hugging me Tamarah.” “BUT I LOVE YOU”.)
I completely understand when I have socialized quite enough, and need to recharge.
Last night I reached the banks of my socialization. I needed to spend time seeing people and being a social butterfly…but my Pomeranian energy limit peaked quicker than I expected.
There has been enough time spent trying to talk over deafening EDM soundtracks, underneath a rotating chandelier which swung gently next to the nefarious trapeze apparatuses (..?).
I had enjoyed moving from room to room and talking with people in Sales, Marketing, Engineering, and one 8 foot tall man who was the +1 of Stephanie (I think that was her name…). The night was filled with loud, flashing, dancing rooms…it was enormously fun for the extroverts who organized the event, and they did a fantastic job coordinating it all for us.
This morning, however, will be spent in bed. Under a very heavy blanket. In a quiet room. Eating soup.
I truly believe that every great introvert experiences truly great introvert hangovers.
An introvert hangover occurs after you have enjoyed catching up with friends, attending very loud parties, staying up far too late, and talking for longer than half an hour.
The deep and meaningful conversations counterbalanced the well-studied art of small talk; which has its place in conversation, despite the nay-sayers.
On one hand, there was a very good friend who I got to talk to for a long time, over sazeracs and fries, about her service dog training adventures (and some frustrating mis-adventures). This entire setting was completely worth getting dressed up and out of the house for.
On the other hand, through my journey of small talk, I found a farmer from North Carolina who grew up on vegetable farms! How often do you find farmers from North Carolina who grew up on a vegetable farm, in tech? I wouldn’t have known this without the power of small talk.
Other people I met were a couple who also met in high school, and are more than happily married. I also got to see some old friends and catch up with who is having babies, and who is moving to Oregon.
But after the night was over, and Ben and I got on the ferry to come home, my body let me know that it was done.
More than done.
I walked through the ferry terminal and made it onto the ferry. I fell asleep on a bench in the ferry. I got into our car and fell asleep on the way home. I plunged myself into bed and fell asleep under my big, squishy purple blanket. I continued to sleep well into the morning, and finally had my first cup of coffee at noon.
It has been a quiet day here. We have been reading, drinking water, eating some fruits to promise my body that I won’t subject it to sazerac and french fry dinners any more, and making soup.
I love the social adventures I find, and I especially love seeing friends and new friends.
For today, and for this weekend, though, I love recharging and being alone.