25 Struggles Only ENFPs Will Understand | Thought Catalog

25 Struggles Only ENFPs Will Understand | Thought Catalog.

This article is so me it’s frightening. I had no idea I was this difficult to live with, but my husband, thankfully, has figured out my key to happiness. Let me ramble until I figure it out myself then poke a couple holes so I think some more. AND I LOVE people but LOVE to be alone too. Oh boy, if this doesn’t describe me, nothing does.

 

The pocket full of happiness

I keep a pocket full of happiness with me almost always. It contains: two rubber ducks (one yellow with the word Believe on its chest, the other silver), a squishy rubber pig, an alpaca, a scarab beetle, a small handmade book, and a full sized harmonica.

Top Hat Ravioli

Top Hat Ravioli

I use it to bring smiles to children and adults alike. I change it up sometimes so there are different things, but those are typically the staple items. If you want to see someone smile really big, pull something they’d never expect from your own pocket. Fussy kids? No problem, pull out a rubber pig. Cranky adults? No sweat, a rubber duck usually does the trick. Giving them an unexpected surprise from a stranger’s pocket (that isn’t disgusting or ethically challenging) brings joy which is kind of a trademark of mine.

It’s the Monday after payday and our finances have hit as close to nada as they’ve ever been. The ban on overtime (even the measly four hours my husband would get a week) really hurt. Our groceries came out of that overtime and boy are we feeling it.

I felt a tremendous amount of stress when I went to Pet Supplies to get food for the cats and dogs. The bags of food glared hatefully at me, “You don’t have enough money to feed them and you too.” The prices exclaimed disdainfully. I started to cry. I broke down in the middle of the aisle while my frequent companion, six year old (nearly seven) neighbor Nicholas, was off looking at fish, and a guinea pig he insists is a hamster, and scorpions. I just flat out couldn’t keep my cool.

“How can I afford to feed my cats and dogs and my family.” I bemoaned. Despair washed over me as I tried to do math in my overloaded brain. My little dog Piggy needs to have grain free food. She doesn’t do well if there is grains so tack on another 5 bucks just for not having filler. yay.

One of the young women that worked there disappeared as soon as the tears started. I felt really alone. I picked up a 5 pound bag of food for 12 bucks. I went to the cat food and picked up a 20 pound bag for the same price. Here came the young woman who gave me a five pound bag at just over 10 with no grains in the ingredients. She said she was sorry she couldn’t do more.

When I got into the car, Nicholas said, “Are you in a bad mood today, Mare?”

“No, Nicholas. My heart is just sad because I don’t have many dollars.”

“You know what you need, Mare?” He asked while waving out the window absently.

“No, what do I need.” I asked, impatiently waiting for the light to change. I wanted to be home sulking.

“A pocket full of happiness that has $100 dollars in it.” He said just as matter of factly as if he were telling me the weather.

“Indeed, that would be a happy pocket.” I chuckled. Oh, the wisdom of children. Then I remembered, I get to work for some dollars this weekend as a dishwasher. I’ll have enough. I forgot all about it until he reminded me with happiness.

I promised him a Dunkin Donuts (our favorite) when I have dollars again. He was pleased he made me laugh. I was pleased he prodded me to remember to look forward in hope.

PART II

A Pocket Full of Happiness!

A Pocket Full of Happiness!

Thank you to whomever left the pocket full of happiness tacked to my door with a nose magnet. The gratitude I feel for this is just magnified. I will obey the command that Nicholas get his doughnuts. Thank you.

I asked Nicholas as he walked up the hill to his home after getting off the school bus, “Guess what I got on my door today?!’

Nicholas was so overjoyed to declare it before I even said anything, he said, “A pocket full of happiness with dollars in it so I get Dunkin Donuts!”

I laughed. “How did you know?”

“I just knew it!” He grinned while swinging his Spiderman (his favorite super hero) backpack from shoulder to shoulder. Man, I sure do love that little kid.

We went to Dunkin Donuts as the instructions commanded. Nicholas had a raspberry cheesecake doughnut, an Oreo cookie cheesecake doughnut, a milk, AND a cinnamon munchkin. I got a small coffee and a chocolate coconut doughnut. I mooed every time Nicholas lifted his milk up over the bag we place in the middle of the table. He laughs hysterically every time. Then he started doing “The Itsy Bitsy Spider” on my arms and hair so I screamed playfully.

“YOU SCARED ME!” He said as he dropped his raspberry doughnut splatted on the floor while he farted. While we both bellowed peppery laughter, he declared, “Excuse me!” We laughed even harder than the cows. It really was a pocket full of happiness. Truly, thank you with all sincerity.

NaPoWriMo: I, Tree

The north eastern tree

Brrrr! Yah nasty wind, ye stripped me clothes off!

Ye made me blood retreat from my trunk

Burying me roots in the frozzzzzen earth

Unlike the kiss of your wetted white,

I will return to shatter your deaf silence

With barbaric spears of buds piercing yer with renewed life

I will return!

 The southern tree

Hey, ya’ll! Check this shit!

I was jist standin’ here by the sod of ‘his her road

An dis nassy smillin ting came at me bro!

Flippin me a nasty finger cut uppin der

Ya see that scar? Loss tree branches in a wind storm

Still stannin.

 The South western tree

Wwwwwwaaaaaaaattttttteeeeerrrrr

Fuck you nestle

 The north western tree

I am paramount to the indigenous people

That…HEY! Cut that…bad choice of words

STOP THAT! HEY! That’s my history! HEY!

YOU! LUMBERJACK!

TIIIIIIMMMMMMMBBBBBBEEEEERRR!

–thud—

The Midwestern tree

So ya see, I get used for maple syrup

Vermont thinks they have the major bunch,

But we’re really number one

Except for Vermont

 The plains states, middle America

Come on baby! Let’s do the TWISTER!

Whoosh! Caught me a trailer home!

OH! And a car! Roll the dice, weather,

Papa needs a new pair of 18 WHEE!-lers.

magalyguerrero.com/napowrimo-with-magaly-guerrero-2015 NaPoWriMo

magalyguerrero.com/napowrimo-with-magaly-guerrero-2015
NaPoWriMo

Pirates in your cabinets

Slut Walk 2011 Costume

Slut Walk 2011 Costume

I admit that I am an explorer of other people’s homes.

A pirate seeking buried treasure that’s right beneath their nose.

I like to admire the stained glass lamp that has a shade with fringe.

I like to see the beauty beneath the cobwebs and the dim.

I like to use the bathroom and see the colors of your towels

I won’t rhyme this line unless I can remove all the vowels

Wn’t rhym ths ln nlss cn rmv ll th vwls

May I peek into your medicine cabinet to see your secret life?

May I, with little poking ‘round, see what gives you strife?

Are you careful with your products all neatly lined up in a row?

Are you careless with your inventory like a freaking circus show?

Do you keep random things to surprise people like me?

Or do you hide that secret life in your secret menagerie?

Do you appreciate your happies when you look shiny to reflection?

Or do you begrudgingly criticize your imagined dereliction?

I reluctantly admit, that I’m an explorer of other people’s homes.

A pirate seeking buried treasure that’s right beneath their nose.

I DIDN’T DRINK THE KOOL-AID

OH YEEEAAAAHH!!!!

OH YEEEAAAAHH!!!!

I lived in relative poverty as a child. We had more than some, less than others. Wherever my family stood on the economic ladder of the late 1970’s, I was constantly reminded by my peers that my second hand clothes (I was the eldest so it was glaringly obvious on me as on my brother who was the eldest boy) were not acceptable. I wanted so desperately to fit in, to be accepted, to feel worthy. An opportunity did arise during a Kool-Aid fad during my 5th grade year.

I had Mr. Pakulnis. It was early in the school year because he hadn’t yet discovered my wanderlust eye watching the birds or day-dreaming. That’s a habit, by the way, I still do when I write. I stare out the window and get lost.

The Kool-Aid fad was that many of the girls brought in Ziplock (not the sandwich fold over) bags with any flavor Kool-Aid mixed with the sugar as if ready to add water. Then, the girls would take their rainbow stained fingers and dip them into the cesspools of sugary goodness, licking their fingers clean then hiding the evidence quickly when teachers approached. Chenique Quarterman shared hers with me and I felt like she was my best friend in the world because I was doing something that the “Kool Kids” did. It felt gloriously naughty. And although Kim Tarpley was my best friend, but she didn’t have Kool-Aid so she’d been temporarily demoted.

I decided I was going to make my own. I thieved away a baggie from my friend’s house because we only had the fold overs at mine. I stole a single package of the only flavor of Kool-Aid I was allowed which was lemonade (due to red food dye allergies). I’d pilfered enough sugar to make up my very own baggie to share.

I felt excitement at my accomplishment and perhaps a bit of remorse but not enough to feel shame. I was ready to become popular. I was ready to fit in. I carefully read and measured my stolen goods into the filched treasure bag as quietly as possible. I hid the baggie in my coat pocket so it would remain undetected by my mother who I’d hoped wouldn’t yet be awake, she was, but thankfully was busy drinking her coffee in the living room. I made it out the back door successfully.

I patted my pocket reassuringly, my anticipation growing as I waited at the street corner with Mona Lee, the Farr boys who liked to beat me and my brothers up, and Lisa Cloud. It was early when the long bus pulled up to the curb. Mrs. Humphries in all her gold toothed rotund-ness sat in the first seat and greeted each of us by name. I sat closer to the front because I didn’t feel safe in the back. My brothers usually sat nearby as well. Plus, with the contraband in my pocket, I didn’t want it taken before I could conquer my classroom with generosity.

I remember snaking my hand into my pocket feeling the grains through the bag, terrified that I’d tear it open before I could share it with my friend Kim Tarpley. I’d hoped that each grain would bring me another friend. The way I felt had reached magical proportions since I’d successfully smuggled it thus far and therefore I was allowed to project my wishes into the sugary lemon concoction in my pocket.

The bus picked up other kids but I was lost in the imaginary conversations I’d have once I arrived under the canopy of my elementary school. Patience was not ever a virtue of mine but I knew that if I pulled it out before first recess, I’d most surely lose the entire bag. I, like an evil mastermind of the Master thief I’d become on this mission, must carefully bide my time.

My chest, which had yet to bloom into young adulthood, puffed against my teal blue coat’s zipper as I stepped off the bus and onto the concrete. I felt as if I were about to wage a war I knew I would win. With rare confidence, my hands swinging freely at my sides, I strode into the school knowing that at first recess, my entire life would change because of the magic package I carefully hoarded in my protective pocket. I was about to become popular; guaranteed.

As I hung up my coat on my designated hook I felt a sense of panic. What if, while I was sitting in class listening to Mr. Pakulnis drone, someone got a bathroom pass and went through my pocket and found what I’d been protecting. I became increasingly distraught at the idea. I looked at my peers and questioned each of them in my mind with clever scrutiny.

Jeff Plume was the most likely of suspects. He was in sixth grade. I’d watched him accidentally inhale a feather he’d been balancing on his breath for an insanely long amount time while we were supposed to be watching a filmstrip about animals. Most likely suspect identified, I imagined what my interrogation of him would be like:

“Why did you take five minutes to go to the bathroom?” I’d ask him.

“Because I had to go pee.” He’d retort.

“I think you were doing something besides just using the bathroom.” I’d push (wasn’t I clever?)

“I washed my hands.”

“You’d never do that because you’re a boy. You really washed your hands so you could eat my Kool-Aid!” I’d reveal my purpose for the inquiry with a flourish like I saw on Dallas.

“You caught me!” He’d cry and Mr. Pakulnis would take him down to the principal’s office for Jeff’s execution. At the last minute, I’d forgive him and then we’d share the lemonade anyway.

But my panic and subsequent interrogation of my classmate led me to err. I took the baggie out of my jacket and put it into my pants pocket which bulged in protest. I knew it would be safe now. Nobody would have to go to their deaths because of my soon to be new-found popularity.

Mr. Pakulnis greeted us by name as we scrambled to get to our seats before the bell rang. We still had our desks in rows before he grouped us into fours for the math test. I saw him glance down but figured if I kept my back to him, I’d be able to sneak it into my desk before he became wise to my ruse. I scurried past him sure that he would grab my shoulder with my former confidence wavering under his watchful eye.

Safely at the edge of my desk, I opened the top while digging into my pants pocket that held the Holy Grail of friendship. I pulled the yellow mix from my pocket, nearly making it into my desk when I saw the teacher’s hand descend onto my wrist in slow motion. I, in identical slow motion, looked up, way, way up, (Mr. Pakulnis was tall) at the frowning face staring back at me. A slight shake of his head, an open palm, and my valiant effort to become popular was removed straight away. A few of the girls who witnessed this snickered at my plight.

I spent the rest of the day with a tragic heart. My dreams in magic and sugary goodness were absent. I’d failed the mission. I’d failed socially. I’d been humiliated.

Later that afternoon, I overheard Mr. Pakulnis talking to my future sixth grade teacher, Mr. Martinez. He realized after several days of over-active girls and stained fingers what was happening. I got caught because of the popularity of the fad?! It wasn’t technically my doing, but that of my peers that got me caught?!

I, truthfully, can’t remember if I deduced that then or if this is years of cobwebs cleared away that showed me the story in different light. Either way, I began to learn at that age that fads could get you in trouble, teachers see more than they let on, and Kool-Aid stains on fingers last longer than the fads. If I had to do it all again, I believe, with truest of intentions, I would have left it in my coat as I’d originally planned and not second guessed myself which, over the years, has cost me far more than a bag of “illegal” Kool-Aid.

The Little Magician

This is me wearing my very stylish top hat. My stovepipe hat is taller and is one I wear with my super hero cape.

This is me wearing my very stylish top hat. My stovepipe hat is taller and is one I wear with my super hero cape.

When I start out in the morning of a day off, I’m never quite sure what I’ll end up wearing (other than my pj’s) at the end of the day. Today was no different. I started out in my black with pink pinstripe pants, a thin maroon waffle style long john shirt (long sleeve) with a brown shirt that has yellow letters declaring “I’m a Hugger” on the front with a picture of a bear. Around my neck I decided to wear my mini-harmonica necklace and my Chinese chime necklace so I’d have music all day long. Although I normally opt for a hat to wear, I instead bottomed off the outfit with some black and gray DC skater shoes that I got at the Salvation Army store for a quarter.

I showed up at the first event of the day which was an end of an era rummage sale reminiscent of the video game Skyrim’s Whiterun General Store proprietor, Belethor, who states with great creepiness, “Everything’s for sale! I’d sell my sister if I had one!” But seriously, they were selling everything. On the table I migrated to tidy and fix were all the Unitarian Universalist shirts left over from various events. They were nearly all children and youth sizes which I kept folding and arranging according to style. There were also some Halloween costumes which included a rather boring flapper’s dress, a sofa cover floral skirt, an adult’s clown costume with bells at the ankles and wrist but none on the hat, a child’s clown costume that looked as if it were as old as the church (1956), a stack of 10 sombreros (one of which was bright purple and traditional in decoration), a flattened witches hat, and a black graduation cap with the tassel that read 2006. SCORE!

I put on the cap and let the thick yellow tassel dangle around my face. It fit surprisingly well. After straightening a few other tables, I discovered a white beard (no mustache) with a working elastic string to hold it in place. On went the beard to add to my growing ensemble. I engaged people in conversations, helped them sort through the things we had left, moved 80 chairs to be moved from our soon to be absent church to the Ecumenical Storehouse (where the not so well off can get home furnishings (and those who lost homes to fires or the like) transport truck. I chatted it up with friends, rearranged merchandise and enjoyed the time. One of the ladies, an artist, Ms. Seely, found a pair of Harry Potter glasses which, surprisingly were wearable and didn’t give me a headache. I found a gold framed mirror to check my appearance and stared into the eyes of a professor wizard. It made me giggle.

I traveled from that event to the next wearing my new attire feeling incredibly lucky to be gifted with such oddities. When I arrived at the phone bank venue I was about to work, my friends didn’t recognize me until I spoke. That made my heart do flip-flops because these are people I work with on several important issues such as abortion rights and climate action. I removed the costume to demonstrate that I was ready to get down to business. Four pages of phone calls later, I was able to get the message out to about 35-40 Tennessee voters requesting their support if they didn’t already feel the same. When I left I felt accomplished as I redressed in my Professor’s costume. I drove home to collect my little dog and change attire.

When I go out to do public service, I like to wear my super hero cape that has the same Love Thy Neighbor logo on it as the shirt I shared yesterday. This one:

I wear the cape because I feel that when I’m doing community service (this time on behalf of Neighborhood Watch National Night Out), it is important to demonstrate in action, word, and mindfulness of others why you’re actually going there. I wear it as a reminder to myself that with great power comes great responsibility which I take, believe it or not, seriously. I don a top hat or a stovepipe hat in tribute to Honest Abe who is one of my favorite American heroes via his humanity. I feel strong and spiritually powerful when I wear the attire (plus, the cape was a birthday gift from a dear friend of mine named Max and was modified by another I adore Manderley). Yes, I would feel the same without the attire about myself and my actions, but it’s a physical manifestation for me, it harms nobody, brings delight and joy, and fills my spirit with even more loving feelings.

Because I was busy with volunteer work over the last couple of days, I haven’t been home to check social media very much. I missed the announcement that cancelled the dog costume parade. I was disappointed in that because Piggy was subjected to two coats of strawberry shampoo (I swear that stuff requires a spoon it smells so good) and a purple and pink striped sparkle collar with matching leash to show off her shiny blue coat. They weren’t going to let me in until I promised to hold Piggy and keep her away from the food booths. I complied.

I was just about to leave when a little girl in a pale blue dress, long blonde curls to her waist, and a pink balloon sword approached me with eyes wide.

“Do you do any magic tricks?” She asked me while swinging the sword around in the air.

“Well that’s a great question. Why wouldn’t I know a couple of magic tricks when I have an awesome hat like this?” I retort, more out loud than to her. I addressed her directly, “I’m sorry to disappoint you, I just like to wear top hats and super hero capes.” I felt really bad. Actually, that’s not accurate. I felt guilty. I rubbed Piggy behind the ears as if she were suddenly going to pull a rabbit out of my hat which she didn’t do.

“Well that’s okay.” She sighed with disappointment on her face for but a brief moment. “I can do a magic trick.” She declared.

“No kidding? What can you do?” As I looked down into her face, I saw her thinking rapid fire of a response.

She held up her balloon sword above her head. “I can turn this sword into a hat.”

“I don’t believe it. Will you show me?” She had me in the palm of her hand, the suspense was building in my guts as I wondered how in the world she’d pull off this impromptu show.

She wriggled the balloon sword around in her hands, trying to remember or trying to discover the secrets. With inspiration striking, she worked the “sword” tip into the handle and placed it on her head. “I now have a hat.” She declared with a grin.

If I wasn’t holding my little dog, I would have applauded. “That’s pretty impressive.” I chuckled, “I wouldn’t have thought of that.” I said as the balloon tip slipped out of the handle with a lightly audible pop sound. She grabbed the balloon sword and remade the hat, crowning herself once again.

“I can do another magic trick, you wanna see?” She asked taking the converted hat from her head.

“Sure. What else do you have in your bag of tricks.”

“I can turn this hat into an umbrella.” She twisted at the waist which made the hem of her dress flare out a bit. I glanced the crowd to see who else was watching but it seemed this was just a one woman show with an audience of two (Yes, I’m counting Piggy Suey).

“No kidding. Let’ see.” I watch fascinated as this seven-year old-ish girl starts pulling the balloon this way and that and ends up with a wad at one end which she proudly places over her head declaring it an umbrella. “Well I’ll be. That sure is an umbrella!”

“I told you I could do it.” She glowed with pride.

“You sure did. You’ve now taken a sword and transformed it into a hat. Then you took a hat and created an umbrella out of it. Do you know any other tricks?”

She paused, deep in thought. She tilted her head to the left listening to her guardian spirit that whispered giggling into her ear. The girl smiled with her new adult front teeth not at all looking out of place on her face. “Yes. I can make this umbrella into a flower.”

“No kidding? Wanna show me?” Piggy snorted with impatience as I stroked her neck near her shiny new collar. Piggy settled back into my arms and I was so intrigued with this little magician’s tricks I just HAD to see how the show concluded.

She nodded confidently and tugged at the wad until it was a looser wad but generally resembled a child’s drawing of a daisy.

“Hokey toot!” I declared with genuine appreciation. I listed off her accomplishments and as I stated each new creation she grinned widely nodding in agreement. “And here you came to me asking for magic when you already had it yourself!”

“I know!” She giggled. “I can do one more. I can make the sword sharp.”

I have no idea who this little girl was, but she was completely engaging. As I stood there in a room bustling with over 100 other people, I realized I was being given a far greater gift. I stayed for the finale. “Okay, let’s see how you do this.”

She pulled the balloon back into the shape of a sword and if I didn’t know better, I’d swear she winked before she began to twist the tip of the “sword” into about a three inch ball. With a flourish that would make D’Artagnan proud, she thrust the sword forward, then slashed the sword with a backhand followed with one final riposte with the unsuspecting chair she’d attacked in earnest and her balloon popped.

She stood there with the pink former sword/hat/umbrella/flower/sharpened sword dangling dead in her hands. She looked more surprised than shocked or disappointed. She smiled at me. I smiled back.

“Thanks for the show. It was spectacular.” I tried to comfort her with my appreciation.

“I know it was.” She grinned, dropped the dead show on the ground and ran into the crowd.

I’m not sure, but I believe with all my heart, I created more magic by not knowing a magic trick than if I had been knowledgeable. I’m still grinning from ear to ear. I am indeed a blessed and lucky woman because I see the magic around me in every day people doing mundane things with such perfect humanity that it just makes my heart sing. Thank you little magic girl. May your magic always be in your hands.