Too Many Johns

I, too, am a confirmed introvert. I am totally energized by being by myself.

Then mornings like this happen and I wonder what on earth possessed me to put myself in a situation where this much craziness ensues:

6:00AM – Alarm goes off. I’m supposed to get up so that I can get a run in before my day really starts. In retrospect, I think it was probably the right call to hit snooze as many times as I did…

7:00AM – I finally drag myself out of bed. We’ve started a total bathroom renovation of our only full bath, and the week has been draining. I fix my coffee and grab a leftover pancake from yesterday’s breakfast. I sit in my favorite recliner and read a book for half an hour while my husband sits next to me and works on plans to build a vanity. His name is John.

8:00AM – My darling three-year-old gets up. Shortly after, her five-year-old sister joins us to cuddle in the living room. Meanwhile, the plumber/electrician/generally-awesome-guy-who-knows-how-to-do-everything shows up to start work in the bathroom. His name is John.

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It’s all hard, Or, Would the introverts please stand?

When I decided to invite others to join me in transforming Texas Schmexas into a community blog, I began by brainstorming a list of friends I thought would be great contributors. I thought about my childhood friends who are in Pennsylvania and Tennessee, my college friends who are littered around the country, and my Texas friends, most of whom weren’t Texan either but only sojourning briefly in the land of Dairy Queen and ten-gallon hats while they or their spouses got graduate degrees.

The people I decided to ask to participate, I thought, were already living lives of intentional community, or so it seemed to me from the outside. Some were moms cultivating communities within their homes, some were even moms of multiples, which requires a dependence on community I haven’t known. Some had lived in community with others, some lived alone. Some had moved around a lot, some had stayed put. Some were married to professors or pastors, which positioned them in unique places within a community. Some were themselves pastors. Some were parents of teenagers, some of newborns.

When I asked each one to participate, I outlined why I thought she’d be great at it.

I knew, given the group, that most would say “no” to the invitation. Most would be too busy and would tell me so.

Except they didn’t.

Almost nobody said “no” because they were too busy. (Maybe two out of, say, two dozen.)

Almost everybody who said “no” had another reason, the same reason, for declining–

They didn't really like building community, they told me, and 
they didn't think they were good at it. They didn't really like 
doing the work of community because, in their words, they would 
rather be alone than be with people. They weren't the right 
people for the job. They had no business writing about community.

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