After reading my 29 Gifts blog, the whole world is probably going to know what an antisocial creature I truly am. I don’t mean to be, but I spend so many of my hours with people, either teaching, listening, interviewing, or talking with them that the hours of solitude and silence with just my beloved critters at home are like a secret love I keep sneaking back to visit. But today I promised to have lunch with two friends I haven’t had a chance to spend time with in months. They invited two other friends Dan and I both adore, and then tacked on another acquaintance who recently became a widower. And while I was so glad to have a chance to catch up with my friends over a lovely lunch at a really nice place that Dan and I don’t get to go to ever because you have to be members to get in, of course I was dreading having to be among people in the real world.
I am finding that making myself go outside of my comfort zone is a gift that is both difficult to give and hard enough to do that it somehow lends credibility to the gift in my tiny, confused, hermity mind. I put on my new necklace from Dan, threw my shoulders back, and walked in with a smile. In addition to the five others we knew would be there, our friends had added another couple. I’d met the man before, but I don’t think I’d ever met his companion – or if I did, I don’t remember. So I was immediately nervous to be with new people and still trying to cope with my nervousness at being with the people I already know and love. Why am I such a mess when I have to be in public? I’m not that hard to spend time or make conversation with when I’m not working, am I?
Lunch was lovely, lively in the area of conversation, and fun. By the time we left, I was feeling almost relaxed, and though it was a relief to get in the car and be with just Dan again, I have to admit that I enjoyed myself and was grateful I’d given the gift of my comfort to spend time catching up with others. Who ever imagined that fear – or fighting my way through it, would be my greatest gift on some days. I wonder if others feel the same way as I?