It was a really big deal for me to go back to school this year, especially to take Spanish - a very verbal and interactive class. No one really noticed or cared at the time, and that hurt. It's not like it's anything new - in 2007 i played basketball for the first time since 1993, when my whole team had teased me and i came home with gum stuck in my hair. Biggest reaction i got was "oh you're playing a sport now, that's nice". It's always "that's nice". Last night my drumming group played for an audience. Sure, it wasn't much, but it was me performing music in front of people i didn't know for the first time in over ten years. And for the first time in a very long time i actually had someone give a shit. J made sure she was off for the evening and came along to watch. She kissed me for luck and gave me a big hug at the end, and that meant the world to me.
Maybe it is wrong of me to want to hear something, to want to feel supported by my family and friends... Perhaps i expect too much. I cried myself to sleep last night i started getting so upset about this. This mood i'm in at the moment, even after taking such a big step and feeling so good about myself, the smallest thing can send me spiraling. It was almost like J being there for me had brought into focus how often it doesn't happen when i want it.
It's like people completely miss the point. Perhaps they're waiting for some epic milestone or something. They don't understand that the fireworks aren't near as hard for me as the first act - making the first phone call, attending the first class, performing the first show. That's the stuff i'm anxious about, that's when i have to conquer the fear. Making the decision is the real challenge - the accomplishment that comes after doesn't matter so much. By the time i receive the reward i've already done all the hard work and i'm ready for the next thing. That's when recognition matters the least, or it feels least authentic.
Perhaps our culture is so results-focused people forget about all the small battles that happen along the way. Those are the ones that are the hardest-fought, though, for me anyway. Getting out of bed each morning matters. It all matters. I take pride in being an independent and strong person, but sometimes i just want to feel like i'm not fighting all the battles alone, like it matters to someone else too. Isn't that what friends are supposed to be for?