People don’t come with bar codes

Since I started blogging regularly (let’s say about five years ago), there have been a few gaps in my writing schedule, mostly due to stage productions I’ve been in. Usually, following those absences, I post a half-assed apology and just get back to writing. So my most recent absence (hiatus?) from writing shouldn’t really come as a surprise to others or myself. It certainly hasn’t been my longest hiatus. It is, however, the longest I’ve gone without writing during a period of great personal upheaval. Much has changed since I left Canada for the grassy fields of Warwick, NY.

These have been an incredibly introspective few months. Normally, I like to share almost everything that’s going on in my life with those around me. I talk a lot. These past few months… not so much. I’ve really only spoken with a few people to get some insight into various life altering changes. To those people… thank you.

I am – according to Mr. Jung,and the folks at Meyers Briggs – an extrovert. an “E.” For those not familiar with the MBTI personality test, it is essentially a psychological tool used to asses how one interacts with and processes events and information. As an “extrovert,” I recharge my proverbial internal battery by interacting with others. While others need personal time to reflect and recharge, my “down” time is usually spent with others. I’ve always been that way; save for some rare occasions, I’ve always felt lonely and anxious when I’m alone for extended periods of time.

So as an “E,” I find it extremely odd that I’ve withdrawn from blogging and talking to people – even some of my best friends – over the past few months. At a time when I’ve required the greatest amount of recharging and reenergizing, I’ve drawn into myself and spent a great deal of time on my own. I stopped blogging. I haven’t spoken with my family as much. I haven’t spoken with my best friends. It has been a strange few months.

And yet, this sudden, seemingly strange change in my behaviour is also extremely comforting for me. Over the past few months (really years), I have been engaged in a great internal debate. If I hadn’t noticed a change in my normal behaviour, I fear my choices might have wound up being a little too callous or arbitrary. So while I am growing increasingly tired of people hiding behind their MBTI “bar code,” claiming that “oh, I’m an ‘F’ you’ll have to excuse me while I go hug someone…”, I am also quite relieved to have been acquainted with it, as it has been of great assistance to me.

Over the course of these months, I have reached the culmination of one of the greatest personal challenges I have ever faced. It has been an ongoing struggle – one that has lasted for many years. Three weeks ago, I woke up at camp and was pleased to realize that I had finally made a decision that I had been pondering for years. I made what is likely going to be one the most important decisions of my life. Three weeks ago, I called my directors at school and withdrew from my studies at the National Theatre School of Canada.

And I feel good. Great, really. To get a sense of how long it took me to come to this decision, look at this post of mine from two years ago. Or this one, from three and a half years ago. The internal debate has been raging for quite some time now, and thankfully, it is over.

Over the course of the year at theatre school, I had felt as though I’ve been sacrificing a little too much of myself for the sake of theatre. For someone who has lived and breathed theatre for as long as I can remember, this was a very painful revelation. So while theatre will remain close to my heart (and body), I will be returning to Jewish youth work, where the sacrifices will be more rewarding and hopefully a little less painful.

And that’s the story of the past few months.

Outside of my personal developments, I am pleased to note that this has been the greatest summer at camp I have ever had. I will write more on that later.

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3 thoughts on “People don’t come with bar codes

  1. Suzy says:

    REALLY?! We clearly need to talk my friend. I’ll be east coast next week, will you be around or back in Canadia? I would love love love to see you before going to Israel.

  2. elyse says:

    you don’t even want to know what my reaction was to that post – but, I will let you in on the secret so as not to keep you in suspense. it went something like yelling out “finally!”
    hope all is well – and I cant wait to read more in the blog about the summer.

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