Monday, August 02, 2010
Here's how it all happened.
Andre the Greek had an intervention with me. This isn't a rare thing. Andre is prone to telling people exactly what he thinks they need to be doing with their life. He's outspoken, on account of him being Greek and all. The Greeks aren't a shy bunch.
So there was an intervention.
"I just don't get it.", I said.
"You need to talk more." Andre instructed.
"And don't stand like that with your arm crossed. You look pissed."
My whole life I'd been called the Ice Queen, snotty, reticent. I was quintessentially, wholly, frustratingly, misunderstood.
What I really am is shy. And if you aren't shy yourself, let me just define for you what is it to be shy.
Imagine yourself in a ballroom surrounded by beautiful people and you are standing in the middle in a bathing suit that is too small, with split ends and gnarly troll toes and a massive muffin top.
Yep, that just about covers it. So when you stand there with your arms crossed it's because you are trying to hold your boobs in, not because you are pissed.
But I had missed out on friendships. I had missed out on a lot of life. And it was time to change.
"I'm turning over a new leaf!" I announced.
But in their hearts, no one believed me. Hell, I didn't even believe me.
I started small. I talked more. I introduced myself to one new person a week.
It's been almost four years of Project New Leaf. The Ice Queen is almost melted away. Sadly though, it hasn't gotten a whole lot easier for me. I still want to crawl back into my shell. And I want my shell to be stocked with art supplies and cup cakes.
The problem lies in my approach. It's problematic. I have a hard time gauging how much of myself to share. More often than not, I hit people like a paintball to the face. (Robin's egg blue paint of course.) They stand with wide eyes and their hair blown back trying to process what has happened. I want to be like a waft of exotic perfume. Something floral and spicy with just enough scent to leave people on their tip toes searching for just one more whiff.
It's a hard thing for me. I stand back and watch those of you out there that are naturals and I wonder if you know what a gift you have. Charisma.
But I'm holding on tight to my new leaf. It usually takes me three miles of running before I hit my stride. Someday I'll figure it all out.
And for now, I can continue to hide behind my beloved monitor in my too tight swimsuit and speak freely without my usual insecurities.
I promise to only hit you with a paintball post every now and then.