So often when talking to friends or family who ask, “So what did you do this weekend?” my response is “I just stayed home.”

Why do I feel the need to add just, I wonder? Almost always, I wanted to be at home, doing routine things, indexing, writing, reading, cooking, feeding my betta fish. I’ve always been like this, but I also suspect that it sounds very boring to many people.

What a joy to read Elizabeth Wildman’s “In Praise of Peace, Quiet, and Rug Picnics,” published on Susan Cain’s Quiet Revolution website, and know that I am far from alone:

I’ve always been self-conscious—if not downright apologetic—about being a homebody. That’s the term I would have used to describe myself back when I was a latch-key kid growing up in the suburbs, spending most of my free time curled beneath a blanket with a book. Or writing in my diary. Or daydreaming, cat in lap. I didn’t really know what an introvert was or understand the exact reasons why I wanted to be left alone, but my desire to withdraw from the outside world seemed wrong somehow, and I struggled to invent excuses for my behavior. “Sorry,” my little brother was trained to say to anyone who called for me. “She can’t come to the phone right now.” “Sorry,” I might say if I was invited to a sleepover party. “I’m coming down with a cold.”

Of course, I couldn’t just tell my friends the truth: that the social demands of the school day left me depleted and I needed time and space to recover and rebuild my confidence. Would they think I was weird? Dump me from their inner circle? (They did both, eventually.) Read more

JThis post is part of the April A to Z Blog Challenge. For more on my 2016 theme of Private Revolution, see A Is for Ambition. Click here to read all posts in the Private Revolution A to Z Challenge blog series.