today, i’m going to a bar-b-que — and i’m gut tingling excited about it. let me set the mood. the bar-b-que will happen at someone’s house that i’ve only met once. there’ll will be a grand total of five people there that i’ve ever talked to. ya know, i’m not painting enough of picture here. let me back up.
sure, i’ve gone to my share of social events in my life: party’s, bar-b-ques, meetings, picnics, you name it. nearly all, i fought back the over riding feeling that i felt out of place or didn’t belong. some of them i actually found them to be enjoyable and fun. a smaller percentage of them, I would say, i even truly looked forward to them.
most of my problems surrounding events finds its basis in social anxiety. for awhile, i attended a s.a.g., social anxiety group, until the group fell apart. my social anxiety finds its roots in a fear of being judged. for example, even with my blogging i fear the next adjective or prepositional phrase will be judged wrong and someone will call me on it.
back to the bar-b-que. i am not only looking forward to it, i’m excited about it! this is unprecedented. an avowed social anxietiest (there I go making up words, again. it really should be a word), headed somewhere where he’ll know 5 people and not know maybe another dozen and I’m not only looking forward to it, i’m excited about it?!
how and/or why?
start back a month ago. We went to Mary’s friend’s graduation party. Mary and i sat down with some total strangers and had an hour conversation with them. that at and to itself qualifies as bizarre . the number of times in a month i even do that will a friend would be represented with one finger. I wanted to asked for contact information, but I feared rejection (another biggie) so i chickened out. five minutes later, he asked, “so, how do we keep in touch?” scooooooooore! it is their bar-b-que we venture to this evening.
as I mentioned, an hour long conversation with total strangers qualifies as bizarre along with looking forward a to and being excited about a social event where i will not 2/3 of the people, that’s pretty weird, too. the world surely must of flipped on its axis.
perhaps, something more mundane comes in to play. the brain’s chemistry continually changes. if i imagine the roadwork in a major metropolitan area, some roads get added, others torn up and other roads stay in limbo. i can’t help to imagine an analogy to the neural pathways. even the firing of the synapses to type this last sentence has likely changed some neural pathways. in a similar way, my 2 1/2 year depressive cycle almost surely laid waste to some pathways, added others and had unknown results on yet other pathways.
maybe, in brain route and re-routes have caused my social ineptitude to let up just enough so I stand an outside chance of not only vaguely enjoying but maybe even being exited about al least some social events. don’t worry, the changes haven’t been completely radical enough to remove my social anxiety; fear of judgements still lurks around the corner. the changes I have seen are very are still very promising.