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I exist along the edges. 

I travel on back roads and walk the side streets, carving a quiet path through life. I loathe crowds, and need a still place to recover once I escape their maddening grip.

I am not aloof, pretentious, or unfriendly. I want to run on the last available treadmill between two strangers at the gym without feeling my heart in my throat. I want to make eye contact with you on the street, smile, and say good morning without fearing rejection. I want to fit into the extroverted “normal human being” social paradigm.

And so I try. After an awkward lifetime of feeling drained and unable to renew, (amongst others yet within myself,) I crafted a mask convincing enough to convince myself that it was real. 

… But it isn’t. Beneath it all, I am Renee Novosel —

a mother/writer/lover/introvert in an extroverted world, and I write to honor the world within, the world beneath the mask, to remember who I am, and to remind myself that it’s okay to seek the quiet.

290 thoughts on “about

  1. Renee, this is so touching and there are so many things I relate to as a fellow (extreme) introvert. What a gift to be able to accept ourselves as we are!
    And thanks for following me.

  2. Hi- Thanks for stopping by my site this morning. I appreciate the look around. We have to many issues in common. I’m following you to see which one off us is more off the wall. I’m extrovert & introvert, guess that’s why I wear Bipolar so well. Have a great day.

  3. I used to be an exaggerated extrovert. The life of every party, with the ability to walk right into a room packed full of strangers, charm the pants off of everyone in attendance, and leave with at least a couple of phone numbers.
    Then, I joined the military, and experienced war. It broke me into a million pieces, and scattered them across the earth. When I was done slowly piecing myself back together, a functioning introvert emerged.
    That line you wrote about doing what you need to be doing, then having to run and find a quiet place to hide in from the madness? – it’s like you gazed into the depth of my scarred soul and pulled that line straight out of me.
    I too, put on a show. Pretending to be that guy I used to be, whom I don’t really know anymore as anything other than a memory, and as the “meat suit” I wear in public.
    Rarely do I ever admit to this, much less on the World Wide Web. But your words touched and move me to the point that I felt an uncontrollable urge to share this part of me with you, if only to say: you’re not alone. And I mean that in the best possible way – one which only people who share this feeling understand.
    Thank you for putting into words and in such a flawless manner, that which I never could.

    1. I’m humbled that you chose to share your story with me, and beyond honored that you connect with my words. I know that feeling, of reading someone else’s words and having them cut straight through to the core of your being, and this experience proves that we’re truly not alone in our struggles. Though very different paths lead us to a common ground, we are nevertheless together here with one another. Thank you for following, for sharing, and for making yourself vulnerable. I am thankful for your sacrifice, I am so sorry for your pain, and I am inspired by your ability to establish a new “normal” … whatever the hell normal may be. Again, thank you so very much for reaching out. Have a beautiful day.

      1. Thank you, my friend.
        I was once given a compliment that I would like to pay forward on to you: “A good writer can convey to you through words what he/she’s feeling. An amazing writer can convey to you, through his/her own words, what you yourself are feeling. And you, my friend, are amazing”.
        Have a beautiful as well.

  4. May I say I fell in love with you while I was reading your bio, every word you posted above is mine (refers to my thoughts). I am a little girl but I’m an introvert, the biggest I’ve ever known I don’t lie I am too kind and please everyone I’ve ever known. I am looking forward to see and be with another beautiful soul as yours. Cheers to the introverts. :* :* :*

    1. Awww darling, thank you! I love your beautiful writing and honesty as well. I’m so very pleased to meet you … to know another common soul. Have a beautiful weekend, and happy August to you as well! ♡

  5. Beautiful blog! Introversion is so misunderstood. I find it rather funny people don’t understand needing space after being around others; it’s just…draining no matter how much you enjoy their company. Thanks for the follow! Peace~

  6. I also seek out corners and find it easier to watch rather than be watched.It’s horrible because I know if I don’t lift myself out of it and put myself in situations that cause me to suffer I will suffer further. I rarely regret doing this though and have found that other people are the only way I can understand myself.

    1. Well put, friend. We certainly need relationships with others to function at our best. “No man is an island” couldn’t be a truer statement … even as much as I appreciate and require solitude.

  7. Thanks for the follow.
    First of all, you are not the only person who seeks solitude,there are too many.
    The reservation is exclusively dignified.
    The silence is always golden.
    Talking at the right moment is a way to success.
    You sound great and would reach great heights.

  8. Thank you… I needed to read some of your things. I forget sometimes that other people do get it… Smile darlin that soul of yours is beautiful…

  9. Love your oppenness and self understanding shared in your bio. Thanks for dropping by and following my mostly poetic writings, the connection is appreciated. From a sometimes member of the liar’s club.

  10. You echo what I, too, have been through.
    “i want to”, “I do”….how well do I know these expressions.

    For a long time, I complied, I was pliable, I could be bent, twisted, straightened and twisted again, until the time came when I was about to brea. I snapped and today I am the product of that “snap”. In a conservative world, I turned around, stood up straight and told the society to “you know what”. Never turned back since then. No, as you say, I am not aloof. I keep my distance, but when provoked I know only victory. Society doesn’t count.

    My words will shoot past my lips
    Carrying lethal poison on their tips
    They will burn and the will rip
    Cut like a sword and lick like a whip

    We all need to lie, at times, especially when it comes to the question of survival.

  11. Thank you so much for visiting my blog. Yours is beautiful. I am sort of in the middle of the ‘trovert’ range but I lean more towards introvert. I must mix with clients in my job but I breath a sigh of relief when I get home, to have some ‘alone time’ and sit in front of my laptop to write. Two of my children (an adult son and a teenage daughter) are very introvert. My daughter is having a lot of issues at the moment trying to stay in school, as it brings on panic attacks. She suffers from social anxiety and is getting help to cope with it. Teenage years can be difficult for introverts and extroverts. My son now feels comfortable in his own skin and is happy with being an introvert. He can see some advantages it brings him and can enjoy his own company now without feeling that it’s not ‘normal’or guilty for not socializing as much as his friends do.
    It’s lovely to meet you and read your thought provoking words.

    1. Thank you so very much, Jean! Three years ago I put myself in intensive therapy to help me through my divorce, heartbreak, and severe anxiety and depression. I wish I hadn’t have waited 31 years to do so … it changed the way I think and function in society. I feel comfortable with myself, and nurture the parts that once caused so much pain. Has she seen anyone? Anxiety is a destructive force that no one should live with.

      Thank you for following and sharing your story. My best to you amd yours. I look forward to reading more of your work!

      1. She’s is seeing someone and it seems to be helping. It does me good to read where you are right now and you give such a positive outcome. Thanks so much for sharing.

  12. To some degree,everyone is living a lie, to be real requires stillness and courage, to be understood is to be loved (very rare) to be a poet requires the willing-ness of a flasher—-I feel that you are such—-I liked your piece very much—you are more engaging then the loudest most obnoxious extrovert…

  13. This intro is delightful! I’ve often described myself as an introvert living the life of an extrovert. I recently got married and I have to work to be as open with my husband as I am with pen and paper and typing. It’s journey but its worth it. I’d rather write than talk. I avoid large crowds and group projects as much as possible but when thrust into the limelight, I’ve taught myself to excel. There’s nothing wrong with sharing yourself while still holding on to your most inner self. So pleased to meet a like mind!!

    1. Wonderful to meet you as well! It’s a challenge at times to operate in a relationship as an introvert. As long as you’re honest about your quiet time needs and he’s honest about his needs as well you’ll be able to meet in the middle. ♡ Good luck and thank you for reading!

  14. I’m a liar like you. 🙂 And I’m grateful for having both the skills and the support it takes to lie in our fashion successfully enough to often surprise myself by believing it too! I wish you every success in continuing until you can buy into the character you choose to create for yourself just as fully as you have been able to convince others it’s real. It’s an incomparable gift, as I can attest with deepest gratitude. Delighted to meet you, here in this ethereal land where it’s safe even for introverts like us to be so bold!

    1. Thank you so much for reaching out! It’s only been in the past three years that I’ve truly begun to understand what navigating as a very emotional introvert in an extrovert’s world means. There are certainly sacrifices to be made for success, but I’m learning that these sacrifices don’t need to mean fighting my nature on a fundamental level. Wonderful meeting you as well, and thanks again for the visit!

      ❤ Renee

  15. Yours is a beautiful blog with amazing poetry, Wallflower. I posted about being an introvert on my blog and have realized that I prefer it to the alternative, after having seen Susan Cain on a TED Talk. She wrote the book Quiet and says that about 40% of humans are introverts. I wonder how many of us are writers…Thank you for your like and follow–it’s how I found your blog 🙂

    1. Hello fellow introvert! I too watched Susan Cain’s TED Talk, and just happened to do so at a very pivotal time in my life. Between therapy and powerful supplemental resources, I was able to gain the understanding that I’m not abnormal, crazy, or even antisocial. Although I’ve yet to read Cain’s book, I have recently read that most introverts are strong writers. 😉

      It’s a pleasure getting to know you and your work! Thank you deeply for reading mine.

  16. Thank you for following my blog, because if you hadn’t, I probably wouldn’t have found yours. You call this Whimsy? It’s so much more.It’s wonderful and important.

  17. Thank you for dropping in at ifitwerenotforwords.wordpress.com ! I intend to maintain this as my creative webspace. 🙂

    Do check my other page

    And you have some really interesting posts here! Where are you based?

  18. Hi there, and thank you for popping on over. I too have a quiet place to recover from the madness of this world. I call it “The Corner” … as well as the rest of the blog :-). I do like you site and what you are doing here. Introvertly extroverted, eLFy 🙂

  19. G’day Renee,
    Thank you for taking the time to read my poem and to note a follow, it’s very much appreciated … Again I think of the lines “The world is a stage on which we all must play a part” albeit I feel sometimes we must withdraw to our dressing room to acknowledge who we really are, you have done that beautifully here 🙂

    1. Hello, and thanks for popping over here as well! It’s certainly true that we all play a part … and that role often requires recovery. 😉 Have a beautiful day, ma’am, and enjoy your role!


  21. Probably the most insightful ‘about’ I have read on WP. Like yourself I am a fellow introvert and feel comfort by judging by the large qty of comments you have received, we are not alone in this very loud, crowded world. I especially struggle with group training sessions and crowded, open-planned offices where refuge is nowhere to be seen.

  22. Thank you for finding and following my blog, I just your about page and found it very interesting…I am an introvert.. And discover my writing helps me become more out going

      1. I’ve been told that many times, my expression are so much clearer written than talked about

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