People I’ve known my whole life say that things come to me really fast and that I catch on or learn things easily. If they only knew. Life is not always greener on the otherside of the the road let alone the fence. What things appear to be are not always quite what they actually are and I’m a walking, talking testament to that. Things are not “easy” for me to learn or catch on fast. It’s really a struggle. I’ve had low self-esteem most of my life and I fight to “catch on” so people notice my brain defying acts of amazement so their attention is away from everything else about me. I’ve never felt I belonged, pretty or even talented. I hated smiling or laughing where people could see that I had no teeth. I despised eating in public too for that matter. Hardly wore dresses after 8th grade except now and then a “poodle” style skirt, I tried make up that I didn’t think really made anything about me any better. I worked jobs that didn’t last because I had to interact with people.
The past two years my life has changed drastically and I’ve changed along with it. I think that there are three big changes I’ve made that I’m proud of.
The first is I’m more social. I don’t just sit in a corner like a flower and wish I was part of a conversation. I have been known to start them more than just being included in them. I enjoy the small talk and most of all I love that when people talk to me they look at my eyes. I don’t feel like they are avoiding eye contact or staring either.
The second thing I’m most proud of is that I have a highly social job where I have to interact with church family, businesses and total strangers. I’m on the phone, conversing business with those who I work with and for. I’m not worried about anything but getting my job done. I love working at the church. It was an opportunity to help strengthen my weaknesses, share my imput and become part of a family that support it’s members equally.
The third thing I’m proud of is I smile all of the time, laugh easily and I’m not hiding behind my hand. I’m outspoken, opinionated (politely) and I now stand my ground on issues I firmly believe in. I’m not just a follower but a leader in some ways.
I’m always growing, always learning and I’m also finding that the whole learning struggle to make up for not being comfortable in my own skin around others has eased. Things are becoming second nature, and I find I’m actually teaching others too!