I once watched with curiosity as my friend stopped to talk to a homeless woman in my neighborhood and extended ways in which she could personally help her. I had no idea what made her capable of doing this, and chalked it up to just not being my thing. I know lots of extroverts, those people who make conversation with everybody. They chat with the cashier while grocery shopping, they talk to the other moms at the park, they say, ‘Hey, that looks cute on you,’ to the fellow shopper at the mall. I once knew a gal whose husband teased her that she’d talk to a light pole if no one else was around.
This is not naturally me. In fact, this is the opposite of me. It is the anti-me. And for the longest time it was the so-not-going-to-EVER-be-me me. But lately I’ve been trying to not use this as an excuse to avoid the people Jesus puts in front of me.
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I worked on this essay for weeks, and finally posted the fourth or fifth draft. It’s such a rewarding experience to see something kind of good work its way into something (dare I say) excellent. It has also been beneficial in getting over my aversion to drafting. Just when I think something is great, I let it sit for awhile, and don’t even read it. Then I come back to it a week later with fresh eyes, and a new phrase pops into my head that fits perfectly between paragraphs three and four to tie it all together.
It can be a maddening experience though, and I’m beginning to see why writers and artists are so eccentric. We spend so much time in our own thoughts, distracted over an undone work of art, that the Right Here and Now gets a little lost. Please warn me if I start looking a little disheveled and mumble to myself while quietly rocking with pen and pad in hand.