The Psychology of Love
An ENTJ falls in love and moves to Missouri
I had never heard of Cape Girardeau, Missouri until Pablo asked me to marry him. I was in love and even though it wasn’t the first time, I was certain he was the real deal, and the man for me. One month after we met, he asked me to take the
assessment. I had done a million personality profiles during my sales career to assure I was the right candidate for the job. I found them wildly accurate, but I had never been asked by a new love to take a psychological test. Pablo swears he fell in love with me because of my big green eyes but also because I was an ENTJ. This made us a perfect match because he was an INTJ. Was this his pick-up line? He signed me up for the test and it confirmed his beliefs. I was an ENTJ. Ok…now what?
He carefully explained (in a way that only an engineer and an INTJ could) that he understood me perfectly based on my profile and he was confident we were perfect for each other. Because he understood the psychology of an ENTJ he knew exactly how to love and care for me. He wasn’t scared of my directness. ENTJ’s tend to speak first without listening and making snap judgements before really taking in all the information about a situation. They are rational, objective and focused on imposing order and standards in the world around them. Sounds familiar. Truthfully, I could be a handful and clearly men in my past had no idea what to do with me and I was impatient with their incompetence. When I met Pablo, it wasn’t love at first sight (even though it was wow at first sight) but the psychology of how we “clicked” sealed the deal. He put a ring on it, and I said yes.
I had no doubt in my mind that I would go anywhere to be with Pablo but quickly realized he was serious when he shared that he was being transferred from his job in Cincinnati to Cape Girardeau, Missouri. Shit was getting real, and I knew I had to take this seriously so I informed him I would need to see “this place” before I could make a decision. On December 16th, 2017, we packed a bag and headed off to Missouri. It was a dreary winter day and we had been on the road about five hours when we came through a small town in Illinois called Anna. I knew we were getting close to Cape, so I started to get nervous. I saw a Dollar General and a Dairy Queen and I glared at Pablo and said, “No way in hell am I Moving here.” He started to sweat. I squirmed anxiously in my seat, growing weary of the travel and nervous about our arrival. He calmly assured me that Cape was different, charming. I stared at the rural farmland with doubt and noticed him wipe the sweat off his brow. An hour later, he excitedly informed me we were almost there. “Look at the bridge! Once we cross that we will be out of Illinois and in Cape Girardeau.” He was enthusiastic but not convincing. The last three miles of Illinois consisted of a fish shack called Babes, a gentleman’s club, and a bar with slots. So far this was not my idea of paradise. Once we crossed the bridge from Illinois to Missouri, we entered the small University town of Cape Girardeau. We found our way to the Holiday Inn Express that would eventually become our temporary home.
We unpacked quickly so we could take a peek at the town. It was dark and cold, but I couldn’t wait until the following day to do a little exploration. After checking into the hotel, I asked the front desk if they had any suggestions for dinner. I always ask the hotel staff where the locals eat. She eagerly asked if I had ever been to Olive Garden? It was her favorite and we could walk there from the hotel. I shot daggers at Pablo blaming him for this predicament. I knew there had to be other options, so I resorted to Yelp and found a spot on the Mississippi River called Port Cape. It was real local and apparently folks from Cape Girardeau don’t dine out on Sunday, and most places were closed. Beggars can’t be choosers, so we found a seat and ordered what seemed like the obvious choice. Barbecue, mac and cheese and a stiff drink. Port Cape eventually become one of our regular spots because the food was good, and Stan the Man (our bartender) knew how to pour.
Four months after that visit I trailed behind Pablo in my car with a U-Haul not far behind. We were starting our small-town USA adventure together. I remember the day clearly because it was early spring, and we drove through torrential downpours. Roads were closed due to flooding, and we got detoured for an hour while GPS spun like a clock trying to navigate us back to civilization. We pulled up to our Holiday Inn Express with our vehicles loaded down like the Beverly Hillbilly’s.
We adapted to our new routine in the Cape, and this is where we built our life together. Despite my complaints about life in Missouri I was happy because Pablo made me happy. We had no friends or family within six hours, but we had each other. We spent our free time cruising through town looking for a place to call our home. There wasn’t an urban vibe to the city, but we knew we didn’t want the suburbs, so we stuck close to the University for our search. We finally saw a for sale sign and Pablo shouted “That one! That’s our home!” I whipped my shiny red Cadillac up the steep drive, and we hopped out for a peak. The neighbors were working in their yard (we quickly learned they were always working in the yard) and then Ken (our new neighbor) rested his rake and hollered “Nice car!” We became instant friends.
Our home was a solid Tudor built in 1932 with a welcoming curbside appeal and tons of potential. We lived there for five years and two of them were spent renovating. On my first visit I knew right away the attic would become a master suite. I had no idea it would take a year and two different contractors, but I had a vision. When an ENTJ has a vision there’s no doubt it’s going to happen. Since we were already in renovation hell we unwisely decided to renovate the kitchen and the back yard. Pablo is a genius and is a very capable plumber and electrician but his new gig at the diaper plant was demanding and neither of us wanted to spend the entire weekend working around the house. I learned a lot during that renovation which is why we insist on a move-in ready home for our next purchase.
We found our rhythm in Cape, and I was happy to be anywhere as long as I was near this man. It was a huge risk for both of us to pack up and move to the middle of nowhere. We both had two failed marriages behind us, so it was a massive leap of trust. We landed here because the company Pablo works for makes diapers here the Missouri plant. Babies and mamas were relying on Pablo to help deliver premium quality products. His job was stressful with long grueling hours. Occasionally I would remind him “You know you’re making diapers, right?” Who knew the baby care business was so intense?
We knew this was a temporary assignment and we spent a lot of time imagining where we might go next if the choice was ours to live anywhere. Pablo had started with the company thirty-two years ago in Mexico and had lived in Venezuela, Canada, Italy, and other locations that sound a whole lot better than Missouri. At first, I think Pablo imagined us staying in Cape forever. He loved me and our home and that was enough for him. I didn’t quite agree and gently suggested we keep our options open. We had made a few good friends (thank you Kim, Connie, and Terri) and adored our neighbors Lois and Ken but because I worked remotely, I was isolated, and it was difficult. Pablo worked long hours and I was bored and missed friends and familiarity. The closest civilization was Memphis and St. Louis which were a two- hour drive. This left me with a ten-mile radius of entertainment in Cape Girardeau. I began feeling trapped and restless.
Despite the town, I managed to maintain my sense of humor and still loved my life with Pablo until COVID hit. This changed everything for me. As time dragged on, we started to evaluate our life in Missouri. I had a gnawing urgency to stop living in limbo. Cape was limbo. COVID was limbo. ENTJ’s hate limbo. A change was necessary for my sanity and Pablo gradually agreed. Let’s find a way to go home, back to Cincinnati. The seed was planted but our dream wasn’t going to grow overnight. We had to plan, nurture, compromise, and fight for it. It was hard grueling work that caused us to live in two separate states for seven months. Back and forth we went. The diaper plant wasn’t going to let Pablo go without a fight. So, we fought. Every step was a battle.
Nearly a year later we are finding steady ground. Not solid, but steady. We are finally together in one state, in one place. Two weeks ago, we bought a home in Bellevue, Kentucky overlooking the city of Cincinnati. We are looking forward to our thrilling next adventure in life. Everything in life is an adventure and I try to approach it that way to manage the anxiety and stress that major life changes create. We met in 2016, and since then, we have dealt with a house fire (Pablo’s home in Ohio caught fire before we could sell it), I lost my parents and Pablo lost his mother, we got married, moved three times, I started a new job, and now we are looking at Retirement. Textbook psychology would say that’s a lot of change and I agree.
We are taking some time to breath and acknowledge that dreams are worth fighting for, but the struggle is real. We aren’t budging from our vision to grab the slice of life we have left before it’s too late. We have seen too many people work until death submitting to the 24/7 demands that corporate America expects today. People are fed up and it’s clear by the Great Resignation that people are reevaluating their priorities. Who knows what lies ahead but thanks to
I know I have a perfect match and we can get through anything together.
That’s my story.
I would love to hear yours.
Check out Adventures with April & Pablo to get a glimpse of our Missouri life.
More about Myers-Briggs
The purpose of the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator® (MBTI®) personality inventory is to make the theory of psychological types described by C. G. Jung understandable and useful in people’s lives. The essence of the theory is that much seemingly random variation in the behavior is actually quite orderly and consistent, being due to basic differences in the ways individuals prefer to use their perception and judgment.
The 16 MBTI types