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Notes of an Introverted, Isolophiliac HSP

You're healthy because you're lonely. Really.

By Nagisa K.Published 3 years ago 4 min read
Notes of an Introverted, Isolophiliac HSP
Photo by The Humantra on Unsplash

1. You vibe natural ambience and lo-fi chillhop. Mellow sound and soft beat – the cadence of stillness and your present moment. YouTube floods your recommendations with every 24/7 chillhop stream under the sun. Up-tempo anything gives you palpitations now.

2. You love your solo adventures. Yeah, you know about that new café on the corner. You ate at that hole-in-the-wall. You watched that movie already and you’ve hiked that trail too, but no one knows when or how, like you did all these things within some compressed fold between time and space. Sure, you did have some drinks to dilute the sheer concentration of people’s stares, but you’d totally adventure by yourself again.

By Simon Migaj on Unsplash

3. Your online and mobile games are more sociable than you. Some of your friends on the Social Medias also play these games, but you’ve mastered the art of the no-death solo run. You’ve rejected every single “join group?” request (a bit guiltily, because the recruiter asked so nicely). You’d love to get your hands on those extra rewards, but you absolutely forbid your cursor from going anywhere near the “Social” tab.

4. You often, inwardly apologize to your friends for your lack of enthusiasm. Though they’ve dragged your number into the group chat, you eye the conversation and never contribute. Then they start planning a brunch date or (heaven forbid) a long trip. Based on the group chat’s projected headcount, you scramble for an excuse to get out, but then comes your self-inflicted gut punch: you’ve already ducked out the last two or three times. You must satisfy your social obligations, or else the almighty Cosmic Existential Pressure will crush your soul into oblivion. You start preparing your mental space for six people, but then The Friends add more people, and the brunch date turns into a potluck-dinner-board-game-night at Who-the-Hell-is-This’s house.

While they carry on planning, you pour yourself a drink. Two drinks.

By Terry Vlisidis on Unsplash

Many drinks.

It’s the unfortunate secret weapon. Alcohol forces the entire world through a muffler. Everything feels softer and nicer. You feel softer and nicer.

5. You drink to survive family gatherings. You hear everything: dad, mom, uncles, aunts, cousins, grandmas, grandpas, family friends and their yelling and screeching, drunken belly laughs and giggling. You have a response ready for every conversation you can hear and understand. A cheer echoes from the family room—the team’s just scored. Kids race to the fence and back, argue and stamp their feet about who won, but oh?—one just skidded face-first into the grass and now they’re hobbling onto their feet and making that squeezed-lemon face… You hold your breath and plug your ears in time for the first screams. The blue sky blinds, the green grass burns, while heat and sweat prickle like itchy scabs. Smoke rolls from the grill, an uncle puffs on an acidic-sweet cigar, and the alcoholic pungence of wine, beer, and vodka tingle the air.

Eyes wild, unfocused, you lean back and shoot your tequila. The burning haze numbs the shrillness and jaggedness of the world but does nothing about the drain on your body. You can feel the bags shadowing and pulling your eyes. Your soul’s leaking out of your body.

6. Most things outside the self tend to fall under an umbrella term: cacophony. Sunlight. Streetlamps. Headlights. Colors. Heatwaves off the pavement. Cars roaring down the street. Gasoline in the air. Cigarettes and sewage. Language, especially conversation, and all their squealing, snapping, droning, and groaning. People’s presences are staccato bursts of unpleasant sound, even their breathing like jackhammers against the body.

7. Interacting with people and the world is draining at best, torturous at worst.

8. You have a muted definition of ideal. Weather: rainy, windy, or cloudy. Temperature: brisk, cool. Clothes: soft, loose loungewear. Sounds: a crackling fire, the ebb and flow of the tide, wind through a tall grass field, dry leaves along the sidewalk, rain on the rooftop—moments the world finally shuts the hell up.

In quietude, you are finally yourself. You can write, you can paint, you can compose, you can think. You flourish. You even turn off your ambient sounds and lo-fi. You take hiatuses from the internet. You even stop talking to family, just for a little while. When everything turns off, you come alive.

By Calwaen Liew on Unsplash

That's probably why you enjoy the nighttime more.

9. People worry about your isolation. They won’t say it in those words, but you can see their question—Are you really okay?—printed across their foreheads in furrowed brows, pursed lips, and dubious sighs. “What will you do if you have no one you can rely on?”

10. You’ll be okay, you promise.

11. Trust me. You are okay.


About the Creator

Nagisa K.

Afro-Okinawan, a fledgling writer on the path to publication!

Fiction and fantasy are my forte but I dabble in personal essays as well.

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