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Connections

All evidence to the contrary, I’m actually a pretty private person. I don’t usually put too much info about myself out there in any form—conversationally or online. However, about a month ago I started this blog and I joined Facebook.

No, the two things aren’t related. The only reason I joined Facebook was so I could play Scrabulous (a rip-off online version of Scrabble) with some friends. But there’s been a side effect—oddly, it never occurred to me that anyone would actually seek me out (my self-esteem issues would be a whole other post), but yesterday I got an e-mail from a high school friend who found me there. The nice thing is, this is someone that I’m actually happy to hear from! He was part of my posse, he was one of my best friends in high school. This is one of guys that I went to football games and parties with, studied for tests with, but never dated or had any desire to date. He was kind of like a brother to me. At some point after I moved away from home we lost touch, so it was good to hear about him and his family.

On the flip side, a few months ago, I was on another networking site (one that’s more business related) and a former co-worker popped up and asked if I’d give him a recommendation for a job. It was pretty awkward because this is someone I fired. The right thing to do would have been to be straightforward and honest and say no. What did I do? I ignored the request. Very professional of me, hu? (Not to mention grown up!) I’ve also had a couple of former friends hunt me down online over the years. People who I just don’t have anything in common with anymore—if I ever really did. This is the down side of getting and staying connected.

As my best friend Lesley knows (because we share a brain on this one), I usually keep a small but tight group of friends (are two people a group?!). And I’ve always been that way. Sometimes the group expands a bit, but it’s never huge. I’m sort of a loner to a degree. Fortunately, I married someone who is the total opposite of me because I’d probably never leave the house on the weekend. I’d be perfectly happy to sit on the couch and read and watch TV (Tori and Dean, anyone?! Anyone?).

My husband is Julie the Cruise Director—he organizes dinners with friends, bike rides, drags me to business events, you name it. I am perfectly happy to be alone when I can be, and it took my husband many years of marriage to understand this and not take it personally. It doesn’t mean I don’t love him and it doesn’t mean I don’t love spending time with him. I just need time to BE. I suspect it’s because even though I have a brother, he’s eight years older than I am, so I feel like I grew up like an only child. I never had to fight for attention. I had all the space I wanted. I hung in my room and did my thing. Most likely, I’m socially retarded and don’t even know it.

Because of my husband, I probably have a larger group of friends (and/or acquaintances) than I would otherwise—which is probably good for a hermit like me—but my core group is still small. Tiny. Miniscule. Infinitesimal. And because of him I am probably less shy (but not much) than I used to be because I’m forced to to actually speak to people. People I don’t know. Oh the horror!

I realize I’m a bit obsessed with this topic at the moment. In some ways I feel like I’m finally busting out of my shell (it’s only taken 38 years). As I wrote in an earlier post, I’m ready to take more chances and be more creative. I’m like Madonna (I heart Madonna)—reinventing myself! I guess part of that is being more open—not just to new people (or even old people) but to new experiences because you never know who you’ll meet or what will happen.

Just don’t e-mail me for a recommendation!

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3 Responses

  1. Seems that re-inventing oneself is becoming a necessary life skill. I applaud your courage in being able to publicaly acknowledge a shortcoming. Very rare thing to find these days.

    I hope my venture into reinventing myself goes as well as yours.

  2. I love this post! You’re so funny: One of the two of us is DEFINITELY socially retarded…but it’s not you. As always, I think you should let the world see more of who you are because you? Are wonderful!!

    What’s not to love about you? NOTHING!

  3. Julie the Cruise Director! I use that phrase ALL THE TIME. And people look at me like I’m nuts. I’m so glad somebody else gets it. 🙂

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