NO MORE MRS NICE GUY – AN INFP GETS DOWN AND DIRTY

 From Meg, a site visitor  

NO MORE MRS NICE GUY – AN INFP GETS DOWN AND DIRTY

  Georgie crouched in front of the fat brown hen’s eggs, his eyes growing wider every second.  He didn’t realize it, but he was holding his breath with the excitement of being somewhere he shouldn’t.  His best friend Sam had lured him next door, promising that they wouldn’t get caught and come and see the baby chicken eggs that their hen Silky had laid.  Georgie wasn’t too sure, he knew they weren’t allowed in there unless Sam’s Mum or Dad said so, yet he had gone anyway, Sam had been so sure it was all ok, and nothing bad would happen. Sam was wrong. The early morning sun had filtered through the hen house in slats of brilliant light as the boys made their way though the cool, dim interior. They had crept up to Silky’s roosting box, and looked in to see if she was sitting on her eggs.  Silky was nowhere to be seen. Sam explained to Georgie that he wasn’t allowed to touch these eggs; they weren’t like the ones you got in your egg-cup for breakfast.  There were real chickens inside these eggs.  Little baby ones which would hatch out in a few days and they would have fluffy yellow chickens to play with.  But Georgie couldn’t resist the temptation to reach out and touch the egg in front of him. 

The soft chicken noises and quiet neighborhood sounds outside lulled Georgie almost into a trance as he reached out his chubby hand to the egg in front of him. Sam had disappeared somewhere moments before, Georgie thought he could hear him in the distance talking to his mother.  He touched the smooth surface of the egg, surprised at how warm it was.  His breakfast egg was always hot, so hot he had to wait for it to cool down before cracking it open to see the dripping yellow yoke.  It was always his favorite moment.  He wanted to see what was inside this egg too and without a thought, he squeezed his thumb and middle finger together.  Crack! Georgie jumped with fright and a sharp intake of breath.  He could see something which looked like a tangle of wet feathers inside the egg between the broken fragments of shell.  He was horrified, and transfixed at the same time.  The thing moved a little, and at once Georgie saw what looked like an eye.  He felt disgust and sickness rising up inside his throat.  He thought he was going to puke.  But he didn’t.  He just sat back, horrified at what he had done.  He had killed it!  He knew he had killed it!  How could he?  He loved animals.  He loved all the little birds and kitty-cats and dogs who roamed his neighborhood.  He had begged his mother for a pet of his own, but she told him he wasn’t old enough. 

  

Georgie felt tears well up in his eyes and let them come.  He let them fall like quick-silver off his cheeks without wiping them away.  They felt heavy and full dripping onto his shorts and they started coming faster and faster.  He was terrible; he was a killer, a murderer.  He knew about murderers.  They had told him in Sunday school about the robbers and the Good Samaritan.  The robbers had tried to kill the man they had robbed.  And then those people who had killed Jesus.  They were terrible people.  Now he had killed an egg when he had been told not to touch it.  He was the worst kid in the street, in the whole town, maybe in the universe.  He would have to go to jail with all the other bad people.  Georgie was sobbing now with fear and guilt and shame.  He had broken the little egg and the thing inside it would never come out and be a little fluffy chicken for them to play with.  Silky would never let him near her again.  She would hate him forever.

  After a few minutes he heard Sam and his mother coming into the hen house.  There was nowhere to run, they were coming through the only door there was.  Georgie was caught, red-handed.   

Last year I took a writing class, and while I don’t know what temperament my teacher was, he was definitely an INnie.  He recalled an event to the class, which occurred when he was a little boy; the event which I have just described to you above (names have been changed to protect the guilty). He had been into the hen house next door with one of his friends, and he had deliberately broken a live chicken’s egg.  He had been punished for his misdeed by his mother, but the thing that affected him to this day (and he is in his fifties) was the potential for evil in the heart of a small child.  He told us that, to him, the motivation in the heart of a human to break a chicken’s egg was the same motivation that effected the taking of a human life, and it had altered him profoundly.  He seemed genuinely moved as he related that experience to us as a class.  Some of us considered his story to be about nothing more than the misguided and thoughtless actions of a small boy and waved away the deeper meaning.  But the ‘criminal’ himself knew what had arisen in his own heart; the conscious understanding that he was capable of taking a life. 

  

I was affected as I listened to him and felt his anguish.  I also understood his pain as it has been my own. I feel as though I have been fighting the battle against this evil my whole life.  When I was a child, I had a list of my faults which I put under my desktop in my bedroom, well concealed so no-one in the house would read it. The only fault I remember was the one at the top – impatience (a terrible sin to be sure) However, a school-friend of mine happened upon it one day and I was mortified.  It’s one thing to acknowledge the evil within yourself, but to let others in on your deep dark secrets was a little too up close and personal. She was quite impressed that I knew myself well enough to name my faults, as it had never even occurred to her to look into herself that far.  I was too embarrassed to even comment on it and changed the subject fast.

  

It is a difficult thing to be an INFP, to be more aware of environments and other people’s feelings and the meaning of these things, than most.  Often I feel a lot like Cassandra, given the gift of prophecy by Apollo, and then cursed with the disbelief of men when she prophesied.  It’s hard to see things that others don’t see, and try and convince them of what is around them, and not be understood for all your earnest attempts.  You end up looking like an idiot. Yet, finding out about being an INFP and learning that that means living by my values, and knowing that I will put up with just about anything except the violation of those values, I am beginning to accept that being INFP means being different.  I love that quote that was up on the Introvertz website, the sufi teaching which tells us that we are created for those who are beaten and suffering (and Nancy, I did cry – and I was by myself, so I cried for a while).  I am beginning to see my sensitivity to what is right and wrong, good and evil is there to help others.  I value truth, honesty, justice, mercy, unconditional acceptance (I think only God has the corner on that one) integrity, respect and compassion and I find when there is a dearth of these things, or more importantly, when the opposite of these things is flourishing, I go into crusader mode.

  

Some weeks ago I left that writing course because I discovered a great divide between myself and the teachers and administrators of the course.  Some of the writing we were expected to study dealt with horrible things like child rape.  I couldn’t even read it, let alone try and study it in class and I asked the teacher if I could be excused from that class and do my assignment on a different story.  He eventually allowed me to do so, but not without trying to convince me I should read the story, apparently unaware that when I say “I can’t”, it doesn’t mean “I won’t”, it means “I CAN’T”.  He also encouraged the students in the class to write their own story and said the subject matter was up to us, but he mentioned that depicting explicit violence was ok with him, as long as they put a disclaimer on it before they read it to the class, so we knew bad stuff was coming.  I was appalled.  Not only was he saying it was ok to read this stuff, but he was encouraging us to write it as well (there were quite a few teenage boys in the class who would definitely take him up on his offer).  I talked to him about this, but his standpoint, and it was a very strong standpoint, was that he didn’t want to stifle the creativity of the students. The artist should be allowed to say what he wanted to say without any repression.  

   

Basically he was saying it was ok to depict violence, and sexual violence against women (and children) because it was part of an artists’ ‘creativity’.  I took this up with the admin and found myself being handed from one department to the next without much concern for what I was trying to tell them.  There were women I knew of in the course who had been abused, and I felt I was fighting for their integrity, as well as my own.  Why should we be exposed to this rubbish simply because it was viewed as a student’s ‘creativity’.  As I said, I left in the end.  I knew I didn’t fit into that environment because of my own sensitivity, and felt I wasn’t going to get anywhere with the teachers because they couldn’t understand what I was going on about.  Was I wrong to leave?  The stress got to me in the end.  I was suffering with nightmares and headaches, and my family was affected as well.  So I had to get away from it. 

  

Yesterday, I learned of the whole debacle over the Dolce and Gabbana advertisement which depicted violence against a woman, and they pulled it because of the international outcry.  Yes!  I felt very vindicated, and felt like going back to the course administrator and sticking the news article in their faces and asking them to reconsider.  I haven’t and I am not sure I will.  I have told you about it though.  That feels good.

  

So, as you can see, I am no stranger to fighting the good fight.  It just seems a never ending battle sometimes, and there are always choices as to how we deal with our own and other people’s evil.  Georgie will always be with me I hope.  He is a good little boy who understands human nature; that there will always be good people who do bad things and bad people who do good things.  The important thing is that the offender is able to see their own wrongdoing and be prepared to change their actions especially if they affect other people.  It’s the habitual offender who doesn’t see the need to change, who is the one we should be wary of.

  

I used to see in black and white when I was much younger, but now I have learned to see people through the Technicolor lens of compassion and mercy, always remembering to ‘walk around in their skin’ and gain an understanding of their point of view before you form your own opinions (just watched ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’ for the thirtieth time – Atticus Finch has got to be an INFP). The issues on the other hand must be seen with the unflinching eye of a champion of the greater good.  We are needed in the world now more than ever.  Let me encourage all INFP’s to let your light shine, and don’t be discouraged.  Just remember to pick your battles, and always be good to yourself, you deserve it.

   Love to all,Meg.

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~ by nancyfenn on July 23, 2007.

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