Traditions. Habits. What’s the difference? (BTW, I recognize that that was a cheesy way to start my piece. Oops.) According to the dictionary, a Tradition means the transmission of customs or beliefs from generation to generation, or the fact of being passed on in this way. A Habit means a settled or regular tendency or practice, esp. one that is hard to give up.
I don’t really see the difference, other than that a tradition is like a habit on steroids. So, I’m not sure that what I’m going to write about next will really be under this theme of ‘traditions’. It will definitely be under the definition of habit, pattern, convention, routine etc…
People say that my sister was born an extrovert, and I was born an introvert. Introvert: a person predominantly concerned with their own thoughts and feelings rather than with external things. Yeah, that’s me. But it wasn’t my choice to be this way.
I always had trouble talking to strangers. I am deathly shy. I can’t start up a conversation with anybody. I always lose myself in my thoughts, many times forgetting what is going on around me, to daydream about things I wish would happen. Things I wish would happen in real life because I am too introverted to make them happen. Conversations, actions, anything. Fight scenes. Runway scenes. Food scenes. Speech scenes. Everything. In real life, I’m always stopping myself from making these happen, but not on purpose. I’m extremely self-conscious, and tend to cater to the needs of other people before myself. I always need to make sure everyone else is comfortable before I am. I think this is the reason why I fall for boys who don’t treat me very well. I always believe that I am doing something wrong to make them feel uncomfortable. And when I become too successful, I don’t realize that it is my success that makes them uncomfortable. Or my strong will. (I may be shy, but I know how to stand up for myself). I’m still coming to terms with all of this, and my ideas don’t seem too cohesive just yet.
But, this is a quote said by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie that Beyoncé (I know) (I’m mainstream and I can’t escape it) put in her song ‘***Flawless’. It helped me unify my struggling ideas:
“We teach girls to shrink themselves
To make themselves smaller
We say to girls
‘You can have ambition
But not too much
You should aim to be successful
But not too successful
Otherwise you will threaten the man’”
I daydream scenes that I wish would happen in real life. This is a scene that I dreamt of while listening to this song:
“I woke up like this!!” I screamed, bending my knees into a warrior pose and jiggling my hands while I clasped my cigarette in my lips, inhaling. Exhaling… “I woke up like thiiiiiiiiiiisssss…”
“No you didn’t,” he said. “You’re wearing make up. You put those clothes on this morning. What are you talking about?”
I straightened my legs and approached his squirming body, staring him dead in the eye. “I’M TALKING ABOUT MY INSIDES, MY MIND!” I shouted, while burning my finished cigarette into his bare shoulder. “I WOKE UP LIKE THIS.”
So, all right, it wasn’t my choice to be an introvert. Maybe I was taught to be this way, maybe I was born this way. Self-conscious, shy, awkward, a daydreamer, a caterer, an introvert. But I’m teaching myself to undo most of these habits. I like being a daydreamer, and being shy isn’t the worst characteristic. I’m breaking the habit of being self-conscious, the habit of making sure I don’t make anyone, boys and girls, uncomfortable because I am too big, too ambitious, and too successful. Wasn’t there a Gossip Girl episode where Poppy Lifton told Serena van der Woodsen that she shouldn’t have to dull her shiny-ness to make Blair feel better? Lol. I told you I was mainstream! (And is it a habit that I always think about myself? Yeah. I’m not gonna break that habit just yet.)