June 3, 2008

Embracing Your Inner So-and-So

In our small group last night, adorable Ashley talked about letting go of a self-imposed boycott and embracing her inner hug addict. So if you're in her sight and she's so much as laid eyes on you before, you're likely going to be the lucky recipient of a little affection from this gal.

What's the harm in that, you ask? I wonder if we don't each have a lifelong battle with our inner whatever-the-case-may-be. I consider myself to be a closeted dork, a fully-grown but still-awkward accident-prone gal, and a far-from-secret chatterbox.

In my mind, the problem only develops when I fight my basic nature. (For me in particulatr, that'd be my awkward and nervous chatting.) My friend Marianne and I have termed this sort of situation a "boulder" problem.

Bradley once remarked that he watches me get nervous in the same way that he'd watch a rock rolling down a steep hill. Once it gets started, there's very little he can do to slow it down, much less stop it. For me, that nervousness is manifested entirely in rambling. I'll chatter nervously, feel as if I've said something a hair too awkward and then keep going so that last silly remark isn't the very last thing hanging in the air.

Can you picture poor Bradley slowly backing out of a room as I'm doing this and hoping I'll soon follow suit? Because if he's around, that's what happens. Every single time. He can see it happening, and I can absolutely feel the boulder start rolling at a break-neck speed, but I can't seem to put on the brakes. If only my rambling was as endearing a habit as Ashley's inner hugging instinct.

My friend Stephanie once told me to worry a lot less about my chatty nature, that it was part of my charm and what put people at ease around me. (Coming from the woman who offered me my dream internship only to have it accepted with a speech about how her phone conversation was as ambigious and misleading as a Bachelor-style break-up/proposal...well, it means a lot. We may have to discuss that timeless conversation on another day.)

True or a bit biased, Steph's sweet comment has stuck with me. And it has talked me down after many a "boulder situation" post-mortem has left me worried that half of Greenville thinks I'm off my rocker.

In high school I handled this anxiety by incessantly flipping, twisting or just plain playing with my hair. You'd be hard-pressed to have caught me in a room full of people with my hands in my lap, that's for sure.

All of this to say (who knew I'd digress?!) -- what is your inner so-and-so? Do you struggle to quell a particular habit, a trait that makes you feel like every eye in the room is on you?

And may I say that, if you do, I'm dying to know what it is. I find all of you as charming and precious as can be and only wish I could be more like you... I relate entirely to the saying "I love you down to your last freckle," because I do. If only we could all be so forgiving of ourselves!

Ashley, next time you see me - hug away! For the rest of you, come out of the closet already and let me hear about your boulder...


marianne sease said...

Let me tell you how I just love how "Anne Says So." Anne, you are too too precious! Funny thing, I was thinking today of a particular "boulder" moment...one that likely belongs in some sort of top 10 list.

Stephanie said...

Anne -- you know I love your blog and I love you! I'm glad to know that I may be able to play a small roll in slowing down the boulder for you! :) As you know, I struggle with my inner worry-wort. I sometimes annoy those I love the most with incessant questions about whatever it is that I'm worrying about. Somehow their reassurance makes me feel OK, but it ends up driving them crazy in the process. My goal this year has been to worry less -- and not worry about whether I'll actually achiece this goal. :)

Rowe said...

I love you because of your chattiness!

Me, I have two. I'm a secret obsessive strategizer and planner and worrier. I think of the worst possible scenario and come up with at least 3 or more plans on how to make everything okay again.

My second is that I am not a social person. I don't like being put in positions where I have to be social to people I don't know or only sorta know or know really well but am not completely comfortable with yet. I tend to yammer in those situations. I'd much rather do small group (4) or one on one.


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