“I admire how you so easily talk with people and make friends.”
I was astonished by my roommate’s words. Is that true? Never in my life have I thought of myself as someone who attracted people or made friends easily. If anything, others saw me as a replaceable friend – good for when no one else was around but pushed aside when someone better came along the way.
Yet, my roommate’s comment puzzled me because, when I am honest with myself, it seems to be true here at Disney. On every bus ride, I talk to people instead of texting and therefore meet a new person nearly every ride. I am constantly introducing myself to others at work and trying to care for them as individuals. Talking to the guests and seeing a bit of their lives is the best part of the job.
So, can I be good with people and have Aspergers along with social anxiety? Maybe. Perhaps I have learned over the years how to interact because of the very fact that I needed to try hard to understand social cues. Being an Aspie might have made me a better friend. What a strange thought!
Another factor to this is that I am at Disney. No longer is being called “Princess” because of my mannerisms and naivety an insult; now, it is a compliment of the highest praise. Coworkers notice that little sparkle that made me different and strange. However, they encourage me to let it shine so that I make the park more magical.
So, I am no longer the awkward girl with no friends and little hope of relating to her peers. Do I misinterpret situations and react strangely? Sure, but everyone sees that as quirky instead of stupid or clueless. My oddities make me different but do not hold me back from living a normal life.
Trying to think of myself as good with people is strange. I still do not believe that I am. However, the amount of relationships and interactions that I have already had with people from all around the world in every state of life prove differently. Maybe I am not doomed to live a lonely life by myself. Maybe I am not forced to always be the forgotten and rejected girl. Maybe I can become secure with myself and with relating to others.
Maybe, just maybe, I am someone that others like to meet and who likes to meet others. What a strange thought!