Sometimes the best thing to do is pretend.
This is what I’m learning.
I don’t feel like a nice person most of the time. Others may see me that way, but I don’t feel like it. I forget who I am. I downplay the parts of my personality that I like the most and have a pity party. This is usually subconscious, but sometimes I know what I’m doing, deep down.
Believe it or not, I’m actually an extrovert. I’m socially awkward, but I’m an extrovert in the base sense of the term. I’m one of those shy extroverts hiding in the corner hoping you’ll come talk to us. We are energized by social interaction sometimes, but in some circumstances it’s just too draining to be worth it. So, we hide and the world thinks we are introverts.
When something happens that just really pushes my buttons, like someone mocking me or not thinking logically, I have to pretend that I don’t want to go kick them in the shins. I have to pretend that I’m not raging at them. Blow up a balloon or blow out a candle as I would say to a little kid. That’s basically what I become when I’m angry. A little kid having a tantrum, with feelings too big for her body.
When we go to a party or gathering of some sort where I don’t have any close friends I have to pretend to be outgoing. This is one I have gobs of trouble with. It is so draining to talk to strangers or acquaintances that it completely neutralizes any energy I would get. But, if I don’t pretend I am outgoing it will be hard to make friends who I can recharge with.
When I’m talking with someone, in some ways, it’s easy for me to stay on the surface. It drives me insane on the inside, but it is less personal, and thus safer. I need to learn to pretend I am open about things that really matter. This is the hardest thing for me to pretend right now. Sometimes I will try to say something, but my mouth will not say it. As in, I am trying to say something and my mouth will not open. This has happened to me on several occasions. It’s usually the fear of rejection or judgement. When I am able to get the words out, I usually find my fears were in vain. I need to pretend I’m not afraid.
These are things I have to pretend. They are things that I know I can be, and probably am more than I think. I have to remember who I want to be and pretend to be that person. It’s kind of like that old saying, “Dress for the job you want.” Well, I am going to dress like a good big sister, a good quizzer, an outgoing person, a good friend, and a reflective, deep thinker.
What do you have to pretend?