July 08, 2016

Introverted Extrovert

You know the shy kid in school who sits alone and never says anything? That was me. I had a handful of friends in middle and high school, but for the most part I was a loner. I was made fun of and made to feel lesser than, so I did my best to shrink away and not be noticed.

When I was a senior, I decided I wanted to go to a college where as few of my classmates were also going. I wanted to be able to be me, to have a fresh start and get away from the cloud that had been hanging over me. So, I did just that. And then proceeded to fall flat on my face. In my being so wrapped up with getting away, I didn't realize that I wasn't really read to be thrust into an environment where everything was different. I ended up moving back home after the first semester.

I enrolled in another college and picked up where I'd left off, but decided I needed to move a little slower with this whole "blossoming into me" thing. This worked! I made friends in some of my classes and at my various jobs. By the time I left college, I felt so much more comfortable in my own skin. I felt free, and free felt good.

My best friend of 18 years and I. Why can't your friends just move with you? I miss you, Candy!

Throughout my entire young adult life, I came to consider myself an extrovert. I'll talk to anyone about anything and hell if you'll have an easy time getting me to shut up. I learned to speak up for myself and to put myself out there. I make friends easily now.

But I have a secret: I'm incredibly nervous about making friends in Charleston. I put "attend a social gathering" in my monthly small goals for a reason. The idea of going to a social event where I know no one and having to introduce myself and hope someone likes me enough to talk to me is paralyzing. It makes me want to shake my head and say "nope nope nope!" I know once I get beyond that and engage in conversation with someone, I'll be fine. I guess it's the meeting people/pre-friendship part that scares me. Suddenly I feel like that kid going away to college - I'm not ready! Is there such a thing as an introverted extrovert?

I'm going to gather up my courage and put myself out there while hoping for the best. Wish me luck?

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