Insania est virtus


Seeking My Tribe

Rant, Tirade Opinion by John Atkinson

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Simply put… I don’t have one

Oh I am seeking one, Have been for pretty much ever without a hell of a lot of success. You know, that group of people with whom I can identify, The people who would go beyond merely accepting and tolerating my odd self and embrace me,  value me, treasure me, want me to be a part of them, I have in past thought I had found that, but at the end of the day I was always that guy on the outside of every circle. And when I expressed that to those closest they would just say something so asinine that it only highlighted the fact that didn’t get me either, or even care to try. [Insert violin playing “my heart bleeds bright purple piss for you”]. Hey it’s my blog, if I want to hold a pity party for myself and all the guys in my head… I can.

Yup, I’m weird

Anyhow, this used to bother me a great deal. I was spending way to much of my internal dialog trying to figure out what was so fucked up and weird about me that I could never find a place.

Then I took this Meyers-Briggs personality (16 Personalities) test, something I had never heard of that told me I was a genuine INFJ personality type. Which after reading I thought “Hooooly Shit, the reason I feel like I don’t fit is because I don’t.”.

Somehow that made me feel better about it, not much, but some.

I admit to being a wee bit disappointed in the fact that I had been cataloged and dropped in a category… a small, very select category (Only approx 1% of the male population is INFJ typed, 2% of the female). But still I had been CLASSIFIED. Damn.

Being an MBTI INFJ type explained why I have and do in most cases feel like a duck at a chicken convention. The odd shaped peg with no corresponding hole to fit in, the extra piece of the puzzle that makes folks ask “WTF?”. That guy who doesn’t quite fit. That feeling has long made me seek the solitude of the forest, the company of the Goddess, in her presence I am completely accepted, wanted, loved and understood. I feel it, I know it.

I was at an event in a park recently, and as is often the case with my introverted self, if I am not engaged in conversation by someone, or if all the social interaction just becomes overwhelming I will pretty much just shut down. Especially when I am surrounded by conversations with which I have no common experience. So,  I listen and observe, occasionally smiling and nodding like the village idiot, but after a time I just drift away. And no one really notices because I am that guy on the outside of the circle.

This event was different. A man there, a man I hope I will be able to one day call friend, noticed that I was starting to get the thousand yard stare and in fact I was thinking of just going off to explore the small park in New Haven Connecticut, a little green like any green anywhere in America, Nice enough, but so insipid that it didn’t even inspire a photograph from me to carry away as a memory.

This man came over and engaged me. He also helped me define my role to myself as a part of this particular gathering, which was an ending of a series of gatherings for this group, which I did participate in and did enjoy. I felt a kinship to the man with the understanding he helped me gain, that we were the role of supporting the someone that we care most about. And I realized it was true. I was there not only to be close to her, but to support her and be there for her in a world that she loves to be a art of. In that moment of personal clarity I knew that these folks weren’t my tribe, but she was, and that I could enjoy being with them even though,

To have, or not to have

Honestly. I am beginning to accept the fact that I just may not have a tribe, I hope for one, I dream of bring part of one.  I long for that sense of belonging with a group of people and knowing that I belong there with them. Is it the members of the witchcraft tradition I am hoping to initiate into soon?Is it the people at the Maker-space Coop I toured and fell instantly enamored with as I saw several areas for my own creative outlet in a social environment, as well as the possibility of being able to share what I know with others?

I don’t know. I am beginning to just accept the fact that I have no tribe. Perhaps it is the people who will read my bullshit and find some common feeling, someone who knows what being a duck among all the chickens feels like.

Or perhaps my tribe is actually everyone.

Now isn’t that an interesting thought.