The Secret Life of an Introvert 

As Jennifer stood by the window, staring at her mailbox, she recalled the thousands of times she had been in this same position…Watching the kids being picked up by the yellow bus. Waiting for them to come home from school. From dates. From college. Waiting for their cars to pull up in the driveway when they returned home carting families of their own for visits. Watching them back out of the driveway, leaving again. Missing them already, although subconsciously happy to get the house back to herself, quiet.
How many times has she waited at the window for a husband to come home from work, from a business trip, or (an ex) from God knows where? Worrying that something might have gone wrong. The what-if’s…
Today’s staring out the window is different than the other “normal” events. Every parent waits and worries for the child to come home. However, for the introvert, the worrying goes beyond the normal. For Jennifer, just the act of picking up the mail from a mailbox at the street can bring on anxiety. Has the mail carrier delivered the mail already? If not, she would look pretty silly to the neighbors walking to the mailbox and retrieving nothing. And she knows they are all watching. If she sees the mail being dropped off, has the mail carrier driven far enough down the street so they won’t notice her walking to the mailbox? Perhaps wondering why she didn’t come out when the mail was delivered, just to say hi.
However, after she knows the mail has been delivered, she still needs to know it is safe to pick up the mail. This is the event she can’t tell anyone about. The fact that her pounding heart and sweaty palms, not to mention her lightheadedness, is caused by the sheer fact that she needs to make sure no one is outside. No one is getting their mail. No one is pulling into their driveway. No one is coming home or leaving for work. She needs to know that there won’t be any chance that she would have to confront someone. To have to wave. To say hi. What if they want to start a conversation? What would she say? How would she end it?
When Jennifer is sure it is safe to go out and get the mail, she does it quickly. Head down, like she was taught to walk through the busy streets of New York as a child. Never make eye contact. Do not be distracted in your mission.
It’s terrible how a killer is described by the neighbors during that god-awful TV interview after a tragedy happens. “He was quiet. Kept to himself.” Yes, that might describe this particular individual. But most of the time, the quiet neighbor is a wonderful person, just shy. An introvert. Perhaps a very loving, friendly, caring individual who is just nervous around strangers. Don’t judge others. You never know what another person goes through just to get their mail.
Who can relate to Jennifer? I know I can.

13 Things Introverts Say And What They Actually Mean

People used to ask me why I looked so sad. Or why I was making faces when I wasn’t making faces. I’m an introvert. That’s what we do! Thank you Christopher Hudspeth for this article!

Thought Catalog

The Social Network (Two-Disc Collector's Edition)The Social Network (Two-Disc Collector’s Edition)

“I’m not mad, I promise.”

I’m quiet because I’m thinking, which is also probably causing me to have an unapproachable, hostile facial expression, but rest assured I am in a perfectly fine mood.

“No, seriously I’m not mad.”

I wasn’t even remotely mad, but since you’ve continued to press me, pointing out how quiet I am and asking what’s wrong for 30 minutes, I’ve grown slightly irritated.

“Who all is going?”

Will I know every individual in attendance or do I have to mentally prepare myself to engage in conversation with people I’ve never met?

“Of course you can stay the night!”

This. This is why I don’t invite people over. Now I won’t be alone for the next 8 hours or so, meaning I’ll have to be an accommodating, zero-privacy-having, fully accessible host… God forbid you wake up in the morning and try to spend the…

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Is Jessica Simpson Too Skinny?

When I checked out E! Online this morning I was taken aback by the picture of Jessica Simpson associated with the headline: “Jessica Simpson Looks Skinnier Than Ever During Hubby’s B-Day .”

Jessica Simpson - Instagram

Jessica Simpson – Instagram

I’m seriously asking, is this a good thing?

I’m looking at her picture and, to me, she no longer looks healthy. Her face looks gaunt. I almost feel like she is not promoting a charity, but starring in a commercial for some kind of charity. Maybe we’ll call it, “Feed a Celebrity.” “Adopt a Celebrity.” I’m not sure where I want to go with this, but when I saw her face, with the sunken, vacant look in her eyes, I was reminded of the starving children in Africa, or Holocaust victims. I want to cook for her, to make her a sandwich. Please, Jessica, it’s ok to eat. Have some peanut butter and jelly with your kids. Set an example of a healthy weight, not a skinny weight.

Yes, I’ve seen it before. Teaching Weight Watchers for so many years, I saw members who couldn’t stop losing. Those who were as addicted to dieting, to losing weight, to getting smaller, the same way they had been previously addicted to eating, to binging, or just to chocolate. Weight Watchers has a maintenance program. Once you reach a healthy weight you are supposed to add back more food. To learn how to eat the right amount of food to stop losing. To maintain. Weight Watchers also has a minimum weight allowed. Anything below this would need a doctor’s note to continue following the program. I wonder if Jessica Simpson is still within Weight Watcher’s healthy range. I hope so. For her sake and for her children’s sake. But I also hope so for her many followers, girls who are being taught that skinny is best. That the more bones that show, the better you look.

Please, stay healthy. To the media, stop promoting skinnier is better. Post photos of healthy women. Of women wearing clothes that are positive numbers. Why is it that men feel manly with they bulk up and women feel sexier when they waste away to nothing. Zero isn’t a size. Zero means nothing! It means you have disappeared. You don’t exist. If smaller is better, are you promoting anorexia as the best?

I’m worried. Please, Jessica, stay healthy. Eat something. Show everyone, by your example, that women can be healthy and sexy.

What do you think? When is enough, enough?

Hunger on the Red Carpet

If I ever become famous, I want Vogue to Photoshop me. There, I said it and I’m sticking by it. I want their expert manipulators to smooth down my bumps, turning my imperfections into gracious curves reminiscent of a kinder, gentler, era.

Photoshop is going in the wrong direction. It should enhance, not transform. Not emaciate normal bodies.

Today, after recalling last night’s Emmy show, I’m seriously wondering why women starve themselves into skeletal proportions. Do they really feel they look better if we can see, and count, each and every rib on their bodies?

I enjoy watching the fashions on the red carpet. My mother, always critical of my weight, once told me that I didn’t like someone’s dress because I wouldn’t look good in it. No Mom, I didn’t like the dress because she didn’t look good in it.

I was enjoying last night’s Emmy fashion show until I saw Juliana Margulies, who happens to be one of my all time favorites. Instead of admiring her gown, and her normally full head of hair, I was distracted by her protruding bones, and worse, what appeared to be a small bump on her chest. No, that wasn’t a breast. I was worried that that apparent nodule could have been a precancerous node.
Women, movie and television stars, shouldn’t have to starve themselves to fit into a dress. If you are wealthy enough, famous enough, to have a designer custom craft a creation for you, have them, no, demand them to make it fit your body. In the meantime, for the sake of your children, if nothing else, eat a sandwich.

Learning to Accept Your (My) Thighs

Let me start by saying: I used to have great legs! Not movie star great. Not model great. Not perfect. Ok, now it sounds like my legs weren’t as great as I thought they were. But I guess now I’m judging my past legs by today’s standards. The dreaded thigh gap. I remember never having thigh gap. I recall in the old days, when we used to cut off the legs of our jeans to make cutoffs instead of paying the big bucks for already cut jeans, that if I cut the jeans too short, they would ride up and I’d have to keep pulling them down. That was annoying.

You might wonder why I even say I had great legs when I am complaining that I had to pull down my cutoffs. Because legs are more than just thighs. There are knees, calves, ankles. Those parts were perfect. Yes. I had great knees and calves. I could wear shorts. I could wear short skirts. I learned to draw attention to my good parts and not focus on my thighs.

Unfortunately, I’ve learned that as I age, so do my thighs. The cellulite that used to be limited to the top of the thighs, has migrated. I guess that’s why women wear their hems longer as they age. To cover up those telltale age giveaways. But what about in a bathing suit? Men have it easy. Except for those Speedo-wearing exhibitionists, most men wear bathing trunks that cover their legs. Even though their problem areas are their bellies.

Women’s bathing suit ads tout the miracle fabric that hides the tummy, reduces the larger breast, lends support, pushes up, holds in…. The miracle bathing suits do everything but hide the thighs. Yes, I bought the little skirt to wear over my suit. It worked for a few years, covering up the top of my thighs. But now the skirt isn’t long enough. My thigh bumps, dimples, cellulite, has worked its way down to my knees. Although I wear a cute sarong for walking along the beach, nothing will adequately cover up my thighs during that long walk from the lounge chair to the pool. During the stretch from sand to ocean.

What do I do? I paid for my cruise and I wanted to use the pool. Yes, I wanted to get my money’s worth and enjoy the water free of fear that people are pointing at my legs in horror. Feeling sorry for me. Wondering at what point my legs went downhill, hoping, praying that doesn’t happen to them.

As I lay on my lounge chair, sunglasses firmly in place, I opened my eyes and looked at the other sunbathers. The other swimmers. Women, ages twenty through eighty, paraded past me, not thinking for a moment that I might be staring at their legs. Admiring, criticizing, judging. Actually, comparing. I learned something very interesting. Very few women had perfect legs. Almost none.

Those skinny twenty-somethings, even those who looked great in skimpy bikinis, very few had thigh gap. And they looked fabulous. There were old women in dress-like suits sunning themselves with their feet in the water. There were fat women in two-pieces and skinny women not covering up their stretch marks. There were surgically-enhanced women and women who looked like they left their boobs at home. There were short women, tall women, old women and young women with cellulite. There were young women with varicose veins, old women with bulging knots. spider veins, lumpy legs, loose skin and scars. There were women in crutches, women in wheelchairs and even an aging tan-mom who could have been anywhere from 40-90 years old the way her skin had leathered from too much sun.

There was one thing I noticed that most of these women had in common. They didn’t seem to care how they looked as they strutted their stuff around the pool. And no one else cared. Real life doesn’t resemble those old Love Boat shows and has nothing to do with an episode of Keeping Up With the Kardashians. Real life is real people being themselves. Looking real. And not caring what other people think. After I realized that there will always be people who look better and those who look worse then me, and that, more then not, most people’s thighs looked like mine, or would eventually look like mine, I tossed the skirt. I took the long walk from lounge chair to pool, thighs exposed for the world to see. And the world did not end. No one even looked at my thighs. No one cared. Who knows? Maybe if they did look, they would be staring at my double DD’s. Yes, I do have something other women envy. And that’s another thing I complain about. While there are many women who want implants, I would love a reduction.

Are we ever happy with our looks?

Cruise, Food Porn and Weight Loss? It’s Possible





We returned home Friday from a seven-day Eastern Caribbean Cruise on the Caribbean Princess. I must say that, in terms of food, this was the best cruise ever! I am mostly vegetarian. That means I did partake in lobster night. Forgive me those of you who are strict vegetarians. My husband doesn’t eat meat, just chicken and fish. We had the best choices ever. I almost had a mouth orgasm eating the chef’s specialty goat cheese soufflé. I feel sorry for those of you who, like my husband, think that goat cheese tastes like old shoes. I truly enjoyed this. As well as the roasted cauliflower and grilled vegetables in abundance. However, I must admit, I sampled many desserts as well.

I was a little nervous about this trip. I had lost twelve pounds before the cruise started. My clothes were very comfortable. Even loose. I was well on my way to reaching my goal of 20-25 pounds, give or take a few. I was so afraid I would gain weight during the seven days. More than that, I was worried I would start back on old behaviors and gain all my weight back. Again.

We had a strategy. We would not deny ourselves. (My husband also wants to drop a few pounds even though I think he looks perfect the way he is.) We both filled our extra large plates for each meal. We also took several desserts. Then how did we think we would keep from gaining weight? Each time we walked through the buffet we filled our plates with salad. Then we took small spoonful’s of everything that looked great. With our eyes satisfied, our stomachs were satisfied as well. As for desserts, yum! We enjoyed tastes of desserts during lunch time when the portions were smaller.

What about those fabulous cream filled, chocolate coated concoctions, you ask? I ate the chocolate off the top and my husband ate the layers of cake. We each chose our favorite parts and we were very satisfied.

The dinners in the dining room were even easier. The portions are smaller and you have to wait in between courses. Remember, it takes your brain twenty minutes to realize you have eaten. Wait a while and you will realize you are full!

And we walked. And walked. The promenade deck. Around and around. It all helped. So go out and enjoy life. One taste at a time. But remember: if you know you cannot stop with a particular food, don’t start. Treat that food like an alcoholic treats drinking. While you are staying away from your trigger foods, (like M&Ms for me, which I can only eat in a very controlled situation) go ahead and enjoy life. Then get up and walk away from the table until it’s meal time again.

BTW, I’m down another pound and soon I hope to fit into my old clothes!

Coming up: Learning to accept your thighs!

A vegetarian/weight loss novel! What a concept!

A vegetarian/weight loss novel! What a concept!

Helen Mirren Cuts Her Own Hair

Yes. Helen Mirren cuts her own hair. If I didn’t already love her, which I did, do, I would because of that. I read it on E! Online so it must be true. (Tongue in cheek.)
I never understood how celebrity hairstylists could get away with charging hundreds, many hundreds, of dollars for a haircut. Ok. If someone is willing to shell out the big bucks, why not? I figure, unless they are cutting one strand at a time, they cannot possibly justify the costs.
I cut my own hair. There. I said it. I do it myself. Not because I’m cheap. Or thrifty. Or don’t feel I’m worth a good haircut. I am worth it. However, I rarely have walked out of the salon happy. Often, I find myself near tears. (I still leave a large tip so they’ll like me. ) You see, I was not blessed with a thick, luxurious mane. I have thin, fine hair that is neither straight or wavy. It’s just blah. All the product in the world does nothing for me. Still, I have had to endure a sales pitch each time I’ve sat in that chair. And each time they have finished my cut and style in less then five minutes. Yes, it takes less time to cut my full head than to do someone else’s bangs.
Why then, you might ask, don’t they charge me the price of trimming bangs? I’ve asked myself the same question. But they don’t.
Who else is with me? Who does their own hair and is not ashamed to admit it?