When I see someone I know from afar, I take great pains in avoiding them. I’ll step back into an elevator or I’ll turn the corner sending myself in the wrong direction or I’ll keep my head down, hoping I haven’t been spotted. When it comes to a battle with my fear of conversation, I nearly always indulge my natural flight instinct. Flight or hide.
Then there are those times when I’m spotted first and I’m forced to talk. My insides tense up. My palms get sweaty. My mind thinks of everything and nothing and then everything again, too quickly for me to land on any one thought in particular. I don’t know where to look. I don’t know what to do with my hands, or my face, or my feet. I forget details I should remember, like their last name or if they have kids or where I met them. That space in my mind is taken up by a buzzing and this voice telling me I should have run because I’m just making a fool of myself.
All this is why I haven’t spent much time talking about my personal life on here lately. I mean, I’ve been painfully personal with the 30 Days of Truth, but as for my day-to-day, I’ve been awfully neglectful. We went on our first family vacation, my first real vacation in 6 years, and I said nothing about it. I haven’t given an update about Eirinn going to school, or vented about the resulting behavioral issues we’ve been having. I haven’t even mentioned that Avery is potty training and doing a fantastic job. And I certainly wasn’t going to write a post about her smashing her face on the coffee table this afternoon, earning herself a goose egg the size of an actual goose egg and two bloody lips. AH has had major surgery, and yet I say nothing. I couldn’t even bring myself to announce the winner of the Disney on Ice contest (Steph won, by the by – I let her know, just no one else).
I’m not sure what this is all about. Is it the same as my fear of conversation? It feels that way. I sit down to write a post and I clam-up. I draft pieces in my head, nearly from start to finish, I get part way through and delete. Sometimes I think “no one wants to read this,” other times I think “it’s been to long” or “this is too personal.” Delete.
The 30 Days posts, while torturous at times, are perfect for me right now. They give me a topic to write about. I can do that. I can take direction, spill my guts in 1,000 words or less, and move on.
I hate that this is happening and I hope it’s just a phase. I love this place. I love writing, I love telling you about my life or a piece of fiction I created or a funny quip I found amusing. I love engaging an audience in this way – from the safety of my living room, hiding behind my laptop. And I adore your comments, good or bad, because it’s how I can converse without worrying about what to do with my hands or my face or my feet. But lately, it’s been feeling the same.
But this time I’m not going to cave to my flight instinct. This time I’m going to fight.