Pages

Saturday, November 10, 2012

The Pain of Invisibility

Are you a quiet, background kind of person? Do you ever feel that you blend right into the wallpaper? Me, too. I feel a little invisible at times.

My (pastor) husband is the exact opposite. He loves people. He thrives in a roomful of people, while I feel exhausted if I've been around a group for a couple of hours.

I often struggle with the feeling that I'm not very important in the grand scheme of things, except in my own home. I love the mundane, ordinary things of life...laundry (well, most of the time), baking, grocery shopping, home schooling, being a mom. I love that I've been able to be home and be with my children during their growing up years and that I still have one "little one" to snuggle with. (I think a 7 yr. old still qualifies as a little person, don't you?)  I love hearing his feet coming down the stairs in the morning and seeing his sleepy face and tousled hair. I am so grateful!

But when I am away from home, I often struggle in finding my place. Even though I am in my forties, I sometimes feel like I've forgotten how to talk with "big" people. I feel like I am not very interesting. For example, when I've been out with my husband and a guest speaker for lunch, it can be almost excruciating because I honestly don't know what they are talking about much of the time and wouldn't know how to contribute to their conversation. My life is still about Sponge Bob, Drake and Josh, Disney Channel, recipes, phonics, and American Literature! But this is when my mind has to be renewed. It's a choice I have to make by putting the right thought into my mind, rather than the wrong one. I can tell myself that what I have to say is important.  I think this improves with practice. It isn't easy undoing years of the wrong thought patterns, but it can be done.

Eighth and ninth grade were torturous for me because being quiet was not the norm. That lead me to believe that I was faulty and that something was wrong with me. This belief creates a vicious cycle of thinking that is hard to break out of.

But I've come to know that being quiet also has a lot to offer. I like listening to people's thoughts and feelings, what they are struggling with, and believing with them that God will work their situation out for the best. I don't find it boring when someone is sharing their heart with me. Sometimes people just need to know that someone is willing to listen.

If you struggle with being quiet or feeling inferior in some way, I would love to agree with you that God will reveal to you that He delights in the way He made you. He can help you in the areas you may need help with, but He doesn't want to start from scratch with you and redesign your personality. You are valuable to Him just the way you are. He wants you to walk in the freedom of the knowledge of your value to Him. When we truly "know" how He looks at us, it changes the way we see ourselves.

Linking up to www.impartinggrace.com

14 comments:

  1. Thank you for this post. Im quiet, and I too, am a pastor's wife. My youngest is 15 (I have two older girls in college). I love being a Mom. When my husband (extroverted!!!) was doing vicarage, the pastor's wife told me being shy was a sin. Fortunately, I didn't put a whole lot of weight on that comment, but it's something that has stuck to the back of my head. Again, thank you for your post...I suppose in some ways, your post validates my place in God's world.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much for writing! I appreciate what you had to say.

      Delete
  2. I appreciate the reminder that being loud or outgoing doesn't have to be the norm. As a mom, I want to be especially conscious of this if any of my children feel the way you did in 8th and 9th grade. I'm a little the same way as you. I'm a homebody, I like routines, and my husband is the one who carries the conversation in a group setting. (Which I love, because then I don't have to!) But I do also thrive on the companionship of my girlfriends, so I suppose I'm a little of both. Anyway, that's probably more than you needed to hear, but thanks for making me think and reflect!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Thank you so much for visiting my blog and leaving a sweet note...I really appreciate it. I enjoyed reading your post, touched my heart...thanks for sharing!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Kathy. I found your post so touching. You sound like such a sensitive soul and I hope you keep challenging your outdated (8th and 9th grade) images of yourself. Your writing suggests so many layers to you and you might be interested in a book I recently became aware of. It's called Quiet.
    Here's the link: http://www.amazon.com/Quiet-Power-Introverts-World-Talking/dp/0307352145
    I plan on reading it because despite what people may think when I meet them, I'm actually an introvert. One that looks like an extrovert at first glance. Let me know if you read it. And thanks so much for stopping by my blog. I got those peach roses at our neighborhood Costco.
    blessings to you,
    Leslie (aka Gwen Moss)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Leslie for your sweet note. I will check this book out. Blessings!

      Delete
  5. Kathy, thank you so much for sharing this! Looks like you've hit a chord with several people. Bless you!

    ReplyDelete
  6. Hi I'm Heather! Please email me when you get a chance, I have a question about your blog! LifesABanquet1(at)gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  7. I completely agree with Leslie on reading the introvert book. I always thought there was something wrong with me until I read a similar one. Now I undersand how I was wonderfully made. Too much socializing wears me out, I need time alone to reflect and recharge. I'd rather spend my days doing quiet activities. It's how I was made and there's nothing wrong with it. The world needs people like us too!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Alison. It's good to hear from others who have felt the same way:)

      Delete

Please leave me a comment. I would love to hear from you!