May 29, 2018

Can I be in a #squad?

I have to get something off my chest. It’s like… really hard to make friends as an adult. Especially if you’re an adult without kids and who doesn't go into an office every day or have any co-workers. Most of the people I interact with in person are people who are serving me in some way (waitstaff at restaurants, delivery people, cashiers, the maintenance staff where I live, etc). And most of the people I interact with over the phone are being served by me.

Or they’re my family.

That’s right. I’m a grown adult with no real adulthood friends. I’ve accepted this and it’s ok. I have my animals and my partner and my siblings and my mom; and the occasional check-in/on by/of childhood friends.

But sometimes it’s not ok. Like when everyone’s all hashtag squad and I’m like hashtag fomo. I’ve never really felt insecure about my body or my mind, but boy do I feel insecure about not being likable or not having friends. Social situations create a ton of anxiety because I pretty much let something ignorant or not well thought out slip out of my mouth almost every time I leave the house.

For example, one time, shortly after we moved to Colorado Springs, we were looking for a place to buy some legal recreational cannabis in town. Turns out, there are no recreational dispensaries in this damn city because, despite the voters’ wishes, the city council decided not to proceed with issuing recreational licenses, but I digress. In our web searching, we found that there were some cannabis clubs in which you could purchase a pipe or bong (which we needed) and could receive some kind bud as a gift. Technically a grey area in the law.

We walk into this shop, and instead of just letting my husband do the talking like I normally do, I interrupt the kind young woman behind the counter, who was about to politely let us down, with a loud, “We know the deal.” Which we clearly did not because there had been a recent crackdown on these types of operations (see the grey area above) and they were no longer offering their gifts with purchase.

Or how about on my birthday when I offered to take two very nice women’s photo outside of the restaurant because they were struggling to take a good selfie with both them and the exterior of the restaurant, and then demanded that my cousin’s boyfriend “get to work” and take the picture. To be fair my hands were full, but what I should have said was, “do you mind, taking their picture because my hands are full?”

See, it's embarrassing to be around me.

So I know why I don’t have many friends and struggle to make new ones. I’m kind of an idiot. And I’m socially awkward. And I smoke too much cannabis, I hate wine, and I laugh at farts.

I think I just need a lot of time to warm up to new people. Or that I need to come with a disclaimer when meeting new people in person: “makes a good first impression, but terrible second-tenth impressions, then it’ll get tolerable”.

I’m not alone in these feelings. There are countless articles out there on the interwebs about millennials feeling lonely. Just type “millennial sad” into the search bar on medium. I don’t necessarily feel lonely. I’m never alone. My man is literally sitting less than 2 feet from me right now. I just would like a small circle of people whose houses we can rotate through on the weekends smoking, lightly drinking, and laughing.

Writing that out made me realize I had that when we still lived in New Hampshire with my brother, sister-in-law, and their friends.

Key word being their. I know they love me, but I’m not in the group chat. I know my place. I’m the “sister of”, as it probably should be. I should have my own friends, too.

I want to state: I don’t feel sad about it. I am a little jealous, but I’m not sad.

I’m not sad because I know I have a lot of great qualities too when I’m not being a total asshole. I know enough to be incredibly useful in a variety of situations. I consume and remember a lot of information. I try to stay relevant in a conversation.

I love stand up comedy. To me it is art.

If we ever got stuck in the wilderness, I could build a shelter and keep us warm. I pretty much always have a lighter, so we could eat too. I can sew, knit, and crochet.

Speaking of things I always carry: 2 pens, a pair of rubber gloves, gum, and oil absorbing sheets. Because in my mind, I’m still living out some Harriet the Spy fantasies.

Oh, I can cook. I’m a great cook. I can follow almost any recipe and well, but I make up my own too. I’m occasionally funny. I am a problem solver. I’m resourceful (ask me about the chicken coop I designed out of an old wooden table and chairs).

I’m trying to dismantle my own attachment to a white supremacist system and help my friends and family do the same. I am not a glass half empty, half full person, I’m just thirsty and thankful there’s any water at all.

So what’s a person like me gotta do to be part of a #squad?

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