Everybody has a nervous social tick.
At least I hope they do, if only to make me feel better about mine.
I talk about myself when Iâ€™m nervous. When around people I donâ€™t know, I talk about myself. When found in the midst of an awkward silence, I talk about myself. When Iâ€™m with someone who is upset and I donâ€™t know how to comfort her, I talk about myself.
For instance, this morning I attended the adoption hearing for one of my best friends, Sarah, and her husband, Ted, who adopted two children after more than a year of fostering them. Big event, lots of family, huge decision, monumental undertaking, lots of happy cryingâ€¦ you get the idea.
On this big day of celebration where it is SO not about me, I open my big mouth and say to Sarah, â€œDid you see my new boots?â€
That was after telling her about my car being low on gas, not being able to find a parking spot, and breaking two fingernails on my way there.
What the hell?
And yesterday? YESTERDAY, my friend tells me the ultra sound she just received showed signs the baby may have a serious heart condition and the People who know about these things started throwing around words like â€œecho cardiogram,â€™ â€˜amniocentesis,â€™ and â€˜surgeons.â€™
After we cry and vent and get pissy about nobody giving them any REAL information, I launch into MY big news about a family transition coming down the pike â€“ as if itâ€™s, like, Show and Tell time and now itâ€™s MY turn.
WHAT THE HELL?
I walk away from these conversations with the classic sitcom slapping of the forehead for being such a dolt, for WHO REALLY CARES ABOUT MY FINGERNAILS on the day their childrenâ€™s adoption becomes final???
Do I obsess about myself to other people because my daily life consists of coloring, Barney, and conversations about poop missing her mommy? Is it that any adult who crosses my path must endure the crazed ramblings of an introverted woman whose extroverted daughter never stops talking?
Or am I avoiding something, like emotional investment, by keeping the conversation focused on myself? That sounds completely mental, but possible.
My biggest fear is that I am just plain self centered.
I can handle being a crazed housewife or even mentally deranged â€“ they have drugs for that â€“ but I would be devastated if all I am is self centered.
So, my hope is that this is just a nervous social tick, much like Suburban Blissâ€™s awkward hugs. People still like me â€“ at least Iâ€™m pretty sure they do â€“ so I canâ€™t be all THAT bad, right?