You may not know this about me but I have some mild social anxiety issues…ok basically I’m a rock star at awkwardness. I’m the person who says the wrong thing at the wrong time and then doesn’t know how to correct myself. I’m also the person that trips over my own shadow, so I’ve got clumsy and awkward going for me. Just yesterday I smacked myself in the face with a hammer trying to remove pegboard off a wall. If you can get past things like that and I know you’re perfectly fine with my social ineptness, we’re gonna get along great! You’ll laugh, I’ll laugh and then we’ll both laugh…probably at me.
Typically, I’m uncomfortable when it’s just one on one or in large groups, so it’s pretty much all the time that I’m on edge around humans. Not to long ago, I made a lasting impression on a pregnant lady. I don’t know what you would’ve said but I’ll bet it wouldn’t be, “WOW! You’re huge!” Ugggh…unbelievable! I hadn’t even been drinking. The words came outta my mouth to fast for me to stop them. I’m surprised I didn’t get banished to the depths of hell for my insensitivity. In my defense, she was always a very tiny lady and I didn’t get to see her pregnancy progress like others did.
There have been times in large gatherings where I just walk away from the group, as if no one will notice ’cause in my mind I’m invisible! (If only I had that super power) I’d sneak away to go do my own thing, ya know like read a book or go to sleep. There’s only so much socializing I can take, like 10 or 15 minutes…ok I can do 30 minutes. I’m also that person who makes weird facial expressions so my thoughts can never be fully hidden even when I choose not to speak. Trying to hold a conversation with someone produces an insane amount of pressure for me. A lot of times I’ll just smile and nod while I’m thinking of the next furniture piece I want to re-finish. There’s a good chance I didn’t hear anything you said to me.
Sometimes I have very random thoughts or questions. These are real conversations I’ve had with my husband (who is a somewhat patient man)…
Me: Hey can I ask you a question? If a cheetah and an eagle were in a race, who do you think would win?
Him: (Rubs his forehead, rolls his eyes, gives it some thought) Proceeds to explain how fast each can run/fly and decides in a logical manner which would win.
Me: If we were walking in the woods and came across a bear, a swarm of bees or a hippo which would you be more afraid of?
Him: (more of the eye rolls, forehead rubbing, and sighs) Wants to know why there is a hippo in the woods and then proceeds to answer with more reason and logic.
I like that he entertains my randomness! Once I get to know someone and feel comfortable around them then I’ll have weird conversations with them too! And we’ll all become best friends!
I’m always trying to figure out the right thing to say to people. I put an enormous amount of pressure on myself to not sound like a dumb ass. Example:
New Person: How’s it going?
Me: Fine, everything’s fine. I’m doing great. Why did you hear something? That’s an interesting shirt you have on. What did you hear cause really it’s good. I made some bread today and then tripped over nothing on my walk. Do you like bread?
It’s either all of that or I stare blankly and give a tiny wave. Those closest to me understand my horror of being introduced to new people and will usually take the lead in the conversation. If I do happen to say anything outta place, they are the ones who will laugh with me so the new people think I’m funny and cute rather than inept socially. I love those people, they really get/save me!
If I ever have the pleasure of meeting you in person, please excuse my nervousness, it’ll go away eventually (I think) and we’ll have some fun afterward…at my expense. Along with funny memories of how weird I was when we met. Sometimes I feel like the I’m only one who has this issue. Anyone else? No, just me, that’s what I thought.
Until next week…I swear I’m cool in a brilliantly awkward way