Apr 2011


I wrote this comment recently on Catdownunder’s blog when she wrote about the joys of Twitter:

When you suffer from social anxiety, Twitter gives you an opportunity to feel as competent as the people you’re chatting to. Well, almost.

Almost, because I still worry that what I write doesn’t really express what I want to say. Or that what I write could be deemed rude or weird or something else I don’t intend. Or that the person I’m chatting with doesn’t really want to chat with me. So I often take too long to reply.

But yes, I like Twitter, and Facebook, and emails, and blog comments. I like the interaction that I miss or struggle with in the real world.

Spring has Sprung.
The Sun is Shining.
Songs make me Smile.
I’m Stuck with SA.

Well, nothing’s perfect, but mostly things are Satisfactory. Sometimes they’re even Super and Splendid.

See you tomorrow with T for terrible… tragic… troubled. Or none of those.

During the two years I’ve been blogging, I’ve posted a few rhymes which you can see by clicking the Rhymes category on the right.

Most of them were just a bit of fun. Only one of them really says something. In fact, it says it all:

The voice in my head shouts out loud,
But its sound isn’t heard by the rest of the crowd.
The voice in my head speaks in no tongue,
And yet its caustic words have stung.
The voice in my head says I’m stupid and dumb.
The voice in my head says I interest no one.
I try to tell it it’s got it all wrong,
But the voice in my head just sounds the gong.
“Go back,” it says, “And hide away.
Nobody wants to hear you today.”

Why do we pick out and keep certain sentences that we read or hear? I suppose it’s because they mean a lot to us, especially the ones that make us say, “Eureka! That’s it.” Like this one from Solar by Ian McEwan, which says a lot about my life:

“Like many men of his generation, he did not speak about his experiences and relished the ordinariness of post-war life, its tranquil routines, its tidiness and rising material well-being, and above all its lack of danger, everything that was to appear stifling to those born in the first years of the peace.”

And three I’ve posted before that seemed to describe me.

On the other hand, we might keep quotations just because we like them. Like the ones I jotted down when my children were small:

  • (On seeing a cow close by) “I’ll be happy at it not doing anything to me.”
  • “What are your eyes for?” “To see.” “What are your ears for?” “To hear.” “What is your nose for?” “To get mucus out.”
  • “Mummy, don’t lie on the grass, that’s Daddy’s job.”
  • (About younger brother who hasn’t cleaned his teeth) “He’ll be the black teeth of the family.”
  • Many thanks to Deirdra Coppel, who has given me the beautiful Powerful Woman Writer Award on the right.
  • I will return on Wednesday with the letter Q.

Bye for now.

I like doing them. Really. I love to stand in front of a crowd of people and deliver a prepared speech or presentation. I get a thrill out of it.

You see, I’m an extravert at heart. Social anxiety is just a veil that came to hide the real me.

Most people with social anxiety are introverts. They’re the ones who give nervous twitches and forget to smile. Me? I’m enjoying myself.

I’ve always been an outsider.

As a child, I hated it. Being an outsider was definitely bad.

As an adult, I haven’t particularly liked it.

As a writer, it’s supposed to be an advantage. Perhaps it is. Perhaps I see things from outside that I wouldn’t see from inside. Or I see them differently. I’m not sure.

I still don’t really like being an outsider. It can be cold and lonely out there.

What do you think?

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