Do I Know You?

Abigal Abernathy in 'Hello Dolly'

Abigal Abernathy in ‘Hello Dolly’

Do you ever see someone that you recognize but cannot place in your mind?  It is an awful feeling.  Should you attempt to be friendly by engaging them in a conversation?  If so, do you pretend that you remember them?  Or is retreating away a safer idea for both of you?  Worse yet, what if you approach you as you attempt to run away?

This type of scenario is difficult for everyone.  However, people with anxiety, Aspergers, and other such social difficulties struggle with these times even more.  Any added stress torments a person with heightened nervousness, sensory overload, and/or difficulty reading the emotions of others.

 Thus, I hate ending up in situations like this.  When I do, usually I try to get away.  Call me a coward but I just cannot handle talking with a semi-stranger people usually.   If they chase me down, I will be as polite as possible.  However, I then tend to try to escape by making an excuse.  Without lying, I think of a reason to need to leave right then.  , This habits are probably not helpful but they are what I do.

Yesterday however, I made an exception.  As I took a few items up to the line at the grocery store, I gazed around nervously to see if anyone noticed me.  Satisfied that I was alone, I turned to the cashier.  To my shock, I thought I might recognize the boy from years ago.  The name on his badge matched my memories too.  Could this be a long-lost acquaintance?

Now I was faced with a dilemma.  Should I ask him about our possible past or quickly get through?  Normally, I never talk to a stranger if I don’t have to help or be kind to them.   Worrying, I stood in line as he checked out my items.

Suddenly I realized that I had very little to lose if he said, “no.”  So I asked him if he had done theater years ago at the place we would have met.  Quickly he responded that he had been in productions and now remembered me.  For about six minutes, we talked about our lives and future hopes.  Although not especially deep, it was fun to catch up with an old friend.

Now, I know that I will still be scared around strangers, friends, family, and pretty much everyone.  However, I proved that I dd address someone bravely once.  You all can too although it is not easy.  Step at a time, we are all making progress.


6 thoughts on “Do I Know You?

  1. words4jp says:

    great post – it is true – I always have to tell myself what do i have to lose? My biggest battle is not taking things seriously – or shall i say too seriously. 🙂

  2. momof3isnuts says:

    Great progress!

    My favorite question to ask myself when I am filled with paralyzing anxiety, social awkwardness/phobia, or plain old fear of losing my mental faculties is—what’s the worst thing that can happen? Then I remind myself of all my successes. Yes, one step at a time.

  3. 80smetalman says:

    I have had similar situations in the past so you are not alone. In this case you had a happy ending so that might be a anxiety lessener for next time.

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