Monday, July 03, 2006

Anxiety

Many people do not believe me when I tell them I am shy. I suppose that upon seeing me at work, where I am comfortable and in my element, or among my friends and family, one would assume that I am outgoing and comfortable in my own skin.

I wish this was the case. Truly, I suffer. I force myself to go out and I join groups (bunco, roller derby, bad girls of craft, bellydancing...) so that I am not crippled by my fear. So that I don't allow my fear to keep me in my house and away from doing the things I think I will enjoy. I force myself to go out and meet people or spend time with people who intimidate me a little because I know that my fears are unfounded.

Today, Biker Bob invited me to a jam session and housewarming party. The only people I would know there would be parts of the band and one spouse who may not be there. Biker Bob made it clear that he would be busy playing and not able to spend time with me, which I totally understand. After starting to compose a non committal response, I told him the truth. The very idea of attending this party, where I am sure the people are very nice, requires far more bravery than I posess today. The idea makes me want to curl up and cry. It is so far beyond my comfort zone that I'm having flashbacks.

Flashback: About a year after I left Sea World (I worked there for one summer and was not kept permenantly) D, who was working there again, invited me to a beach party with his work friends, many of whom I had worked with as well. Since I hadn't seen them in awhile, I was a bit apprehensive but I knew I would be ok. I wish I had been ok. D ran off with his friend who has been referred to as GRBF in previous posts, to go goof off. I can't even remember where they were, but it wasn't at the party. I was left alone in a group of strangers and former aquaintences, none of whom I was ever on a phone call basis, many of whom I had not seen in long enough that I may not have remembered their names. I was never part of the party group anyway. (which, I firmly believe, is part of the reason I was not kept at summer's end).
I was reduced to a teary mess, although I hid it. When D and Co. returned, I requested that we leave. As soon as possible. As we drove away, my cloud lifted and I felt better.

If you don't suffer from social anxiety, then it is hard to understand why a grown woman would be so worried that no one likes her. That the very concept of attending a party with strangers (or worse! mild aquaintences!! They have formed an opinion!!) would so strip you of your confidence and feeling of self worth that you know your very attitude at said party would be grounds for whispers. That your anxiety will perpetuate any imagined slights into complete mental agony. breakdown. humiliation.

It was difficult to explain this to Biker Bob. He did wonderfully at my mom's house on Saturday and played in the pool like he had known every one for years. He doesn't seem to suffer from this affliction. He said he had a nice time. When getting to know someone, you learn about thier baggage. I have a lot. I don't know if he can even guess the half of it. I do firmly believe everyone has issues, everyone has idiosyncracies. The problem is finding someone who's baggage you can handle.


In other news, I am Partner of the Month at Harbucks, which gives me endless pride and amusement. I've never been employee of the month anywhere!

Happy Anniversary to my Seester!

Biker Bob and I were siting on the couch watching a movie last night. I had my head on his belly which was gurgling something fierce. He moved across the room, worried about breezes wooshing past my head. (since apparently, his farts don't stink, which, to give him credit, I didn't smell anything) Once we had retired, I was teasing him about it. In true man fashion, he let one go. It vibrated the bed. (which actually grossed me out quite a bit, but, what can you do?) We had this conversation this morning:

Me: Meanwhile, you have now given me better blog fodder than my original idea of discussing that bed rattling fart from last night.

BB: your bed is kinda rattlely it really was really a little fart the bed just made it sound like a big powerful testosterone powered fart.

Me: Damn Ikea furniture.

Me (again!): you know I'm going to have to quote you, right???

BB:what did I say that you want to quote?

Me: the whole fart conversation. it's hilarious.are you glad now that dean renamed you?

BB: No, because now I sound like a fat biker who rides a Harly and has tattoos who farts loudly and is generally an east county barbarian. I am in good shape have no tattoos don't fart much.

And I really think that last sentence would make a PERFECT personal ad. heh.

3 comments:

Sensei Ern said...

As to the farts, last night, my non-biker wife became barker wife. She was asleep and would not stop releasing barking spiders!

I wanted to gag! I tried breathing through a pillow...it worked! You know what else? You can't smother a person with a pillow. Sure, it restricts some airflow, but you can still breath through it.

I should have attached the pillow to her butt...kinda like a butt muffler.

HAHAHA! Someone will now come to your site while searching for buttmufflers!

As to the party thing. Dale Carnegie wroote a book, "How to Win Friends and Influence People". I don't remember much of the book, but I remember this, "To have friends you must show yourself to be friendly."

Instead of telling everything about yourself, ask the person closest to you about himself. Listen intently, and even if you are not really interested, ask whatever question you have, even if you think it sounds stupid.

You will win a friend for life.

A few years ago. a friend who lives in Pennsylvania got married. At the reception, my wife and I sat with six people we had never met before. My wife talked to everyone, but mostly about herself. She had pleasant conversation, but remembers nothing about the table.

I, on the other hand, turned to the guy next to me and asked what he did.

"I'm an engineer. Boring really."

"A train engineer?"

"No, I design dams.

OK, that is a boring job, but I immediately asked him, "Are there that many designs for dams that one could make a career out of it?"

For the next hour, my wife talked about everything she knew. I listened and found out just about everything I need to know to start my own Tennesee Valley Authority.

None of the people remember my wife, but to this day, that guy remembers my name and looks forward to talking more about dams.

yhlnddtv: The new women's alterantive to BET...Yalanda TV.

Sensei Ern said...

Maybe BB read your blog from the other day and is now taking "Takeawhiff"?

BB: Not only am I a member of Take a Whiff, I'm the (fffft) president."

Sensei Ern said...

Sorry for bolg-hogging the replies, but this was on DIlbert's page Monday:
http://www.dilbert.com/comics/dilbert/archive/images/dilbert21046940060703.gif