Sometimes it produces no more than a shake-my-head-and chuckle-to-myself reaction...like when i do something weird, or say something endearingly (hopefully) erratic. Other times, like today (and, i will admit, most days i've been working here at disney) it just makes me feel achingly incompetent and broken as a human being. I know that sounds terrible, but i'm just being honest.
Everyone here is silly, geeky, sweet, and all awkward in their own ways. But every time i walk into the building or leave my cubicle for any reason, i pray that i will not run into anyone. I am very literally afraid of talking to people. They have parties, get cakes for people's birthdays, and i hear them all laughing and hanging out with each other...
|sitting at work|
i started experiencing these fears when i was about 14 years old. i remember. and instead of growing out of it, it has rather grown with me, manifesting itself in dishearteningly countless different ways. It is so familiar that i don't even think about it sometimes. But today as i walked through the kitchen instinctively avoiding eye contact with my co-workers, yet smiling dumbly to the floor so i don't seem like a jerk i was struck again with how ridiculous and crippling this problem really is to me.
The panic that sets in when i am standing alone in a room full of laughing people, the shot of adrenaline that burns in my chest when someone acknowledges my presence.
I just want to leave. So i can breathe. I leave early, not finishing my work, so i can be alone and not not in constant dread. So i can go home to my husband who doesn't make me feel scared. So i can sleep and not have to think of how dysfunctional i am.
And it happens
social gatherings, holidays... and i thought that it would be better by now.
i suppose it is better, in some ways, yet in others it's worse. and i'm tired...today i am so. tired. of it.
It just makes me dread the rest of my life. I remember when i was in my 20 thinking "this can't go on forever, it can't. it won't. it has to get better because i can't live like this." and now i am 30 and thinking exactly the same thing. It's exhausting.
The difference is, that unlike 10 years ago, i know that the feeling ebbs and flows and sometimes i don't even feel it, so that's good. Also that "feelings" are rarely based in fact. It's kind of like realizing that you're dreaming while you are still in the dream. Things seem a certain way, but you know they aren't real and it's all in your head, but there's not much you can do but try to move along the best you can until it's over. But it doesn't really make what's happening feel much better.
And i also know now that "feelings" don't last...thank God.
i know i'm currently in the grip of this overwhelming, almost blind internal hysteria right now and that it will wear itself out. That's a difference from 10 years ago, too.
So i suppose i'll just take my own consolation and just ride this day through...and perhaps do the same thing tomorrow.
But i try not to think that far ahead. I like to hope that maybe, by tomorrow, i won't feel like such a lemon of a human--maybe it truly will all be better.