I’ve noticed recently that socially, I feel different. I feel like inside I’m still what I ‘used to be’ but with just added extras I never had before, but on the outside I’m totes not. Hanging out with new friends, I notice it just as much as when I hang out with old friends, but perhaps even more so with the new ones. I am aware that they are knowing me now – this somewhat mouthy and honest or blunt, but quiet and shy, nervous yet confident, and open to vulnerability, human being. But I used to be silly…I used to be a twat wearing underpants over my trousers and dancing until 4am at festivals. I used to be spontaneous and go on adventures without a care in the world…I used to be part of shows or be an MC for them….and most of all, I used to make people laugh, and I used to laugh, A LOT. I mean like proper six pack creating, laughter.
Recently I notice that when I’m in social situations, I feel like a fish out of water. I’m all weird and jumbly. I don’t really make that good conversation, and this has always been a strong point. To be honest half the time I don’t really give a shit about appearing polite or interested or nice. Sometimes I wonder whether I should go back to my old ways a little bit, and care about what people think…but I don’t have the energy anymore. But I still wonder whether I need to find the energy, whether I need to make more of an effort with the strangers I’m with. Friends, I make an effort with. I ask questions, I make sure they’re okay. But not as half as much as I used to. And I think that’s a good thing. And I think it’s a good thing I don’t worry about what I’m like with strangers or friends of friends either. This time is for me and I’m just being me…it’s just tricky when I don’t know if I really like the me that I am becoming, or am being. That’s when the fact that I know who I am inside, and know that I have this ridiculous and silly spark that shines so brightly inside, conflicts with the fact that I know I’m not displaying it…at all. It’s the conflict of what I know I am, as a full package, and what the world gets to see. I sometimes, a lot of the time actually, wish that it was more of the fully package. But I also know that for some friends – old friends – they still get the full package. It’s not gone anywhere, it just is only shared with the ones I know really well, perhaps.
I still think there isn’t enough laughter and silliness in my life. Inside, along with the full package, I still think there is. But increasingly – this week – I have been aware of actually how little silliness and laughter I have, compared to what I naturally and normally need. It’s not like I’m all serious all the time – HELL NO, NEVER – but there isn’t the extent of silliness that I would like, or there was. In myself or in my life.
There’s something funny about how I feel when I leave social situations and come back home…I feel relieved. I used to feel sad. I used to just want to be with people, with groups, submerged in conversation, fun and laughter. But now I just want to be at home. I just want to be nestled into my nest. I just want one on one social interaction. Bring in a third and I’m thrown. I hadn’t realised just how little I hang out in groups anymore, until I do. And then I realise how weird and out of place I feel. Yet groups were always something I thrived in before. Always.
It may well have something to do with how little I am out of the house at the moment – vertigo and then this slipped disc palava. You just get used to your own company, and that of others one to one or virtually or phone call-y. And that’s very different to social ‘real life’. It also might have something to do with the fact that so often my brain is so tired, I just don’t give a shit because any amount of giving-a-shit that I am energetically able to do, I’m focusing on functioning…eating…speaking what I need to.
Saying all this though, I know that sometimes groups and social interaction is right up there on my love list. Even during this time. I just think that I haven’t quite gotten used to who I am yet at the moment, and so whenever I am with people I always feel slightly out of my depth. And my depth don’t feel all that deep. My depth just feels very different too. I feel very different. And being sociable takes practise…it takes gentle warm ups. And sometimes it doesn’t. Like tonight – going from ten days of being home, with daily visitors of course, but no outside life, to an evening of soaking in a hot tub and lots of people around. i just noticed how in-my-shell, unless with one other, I had become.
Dropping the constant caring of others is, in my opinion, but I do often wonder what people think of me. But that is something, unless I ask, I’ll never really know. And it’s not something that I’m sure I really want to know. I know I’m rad, and I also know I’m a bit weird. But I think I also know that the rest of the world is that too.