Last year I wrote a blog about being in the outside looking in.
There are a lot of the story that are exactly the same. It was rainy and gloomy and dark last year too. I worked later then I should have so was rushing and late…just like last year. The gathering was a pre-meet swim team dinner…just like last year. I didn’t prepare and didn’t have my Pinterest inspired dessert-AGAIN THIS YEAR. Some day I’ll actually make something I pin. I swear I will.
But this year there is part of the story that is different. This year I wasn’t on the outside looking wistfully in. Not this year. This year I was inside. This year I was part of the party.
It wasn’t my party but I was a part of it. I was a part of something instead of just looking in and wishing I was part of it. What a difference.
The distance between the sidewalk looking in and the kitchen where I stood tonight is miles and miles and miles. It took me a year to make the trip. But I made it. With the help of a friend. But I made it.
To someone comfortable in their own skin this probably seems like no big deal. To an introvert who is socially awkward at a very bad time in life…well…it’s a very big deal. I always want to be part of things but never quite know how to go about being included. When I am included I typically feel awkward and out of place. I don’t like being on the outside and I don’t know what to do on the inside.
Tonight I just felt thankful. Thankful that I was inside and not outside looking in. Thankful to be a part of things and not just wishing I was a part of something. Thankful to have a friend that just naturally made me feel welcome and a part of it all.
She is all that I am not. She’s the me I want to be-outgoing, vivacious, a natural leader….she makes everyone feel comfortable and included without any effort at all. She’s a natural hostess. Hosting a dinner for 20+ swimmers on super short notice didn’t rattle her. That’s her. She’s intelligent and I’ve told her on more than 1 occasion that I am not smart enough to be her friend. I mean it but she laughs each time I say it. She brought me inside tonight without making it a big deal. And I am grateful.
I promised myself a new story this year. Tonight my story got a new chapter. Tonight I got to be in the inside looking out. It’s a much nicer view.