November 04, 2010

Friends

I don't know how to start this post. My mind is all over the place and I can't seem to gather all my thoughts right. I advise you to buckle your seat belts and emotions because it sounds like I'm gonna be whining a lot in this post - but I have to let it out before I start bawling again.

I read "I Don't Have A Friend" a few weeks ago, written by an LDS sister. And it hit me right on the spot (yeah, you'll see my comment there).

You see, for as long as I can remember (that is, throughout my whole life), I have always been the type of person who is not really good at making friends. For me, I prefer to make it happen naturally - you know, the kind where I don't have to keep on forcing a conversation to get to know that person. Most of my close friends happened that way. We just became friends and got to know each other more and more each day along the way. Sure, there were disagreements and what-not but that's what made our friendship even more meaningful.

I've always described "getting-to-know-someone" like this: For me, it's like someone who has a "stage fright" speaking publicly at a convention in front of a BIG crowd, or maybe somebody who's afraid of heights and is about to jump off of one of the rocks in Grand Canyon (or sky diving). Or somebody who's scared to swim that is thrown in a 3 ft.swimming pool and starts freaking out. That kind. It's been like that ever since I was very young.

I know, I know. Some will say, "just because you grew up like that doesn't mean you can't change it." Believe me, I tried! A lot! I can clearly remember a night in Hawai'i when I was really new. It was probably my first or second night. I looked outside my hale room window and I saw a group of people laughing the night away. I thought, "this is just the beginning. I'll meet some friends, I know that." I didn't have a roommate back then, so it was really lonely. Then, BOOM! I met Anggi in one of our student orientations. She has been my closest friend ever since then, even though we have other girls in our group of friends. I've always felt like I connected the most with her. She accepted me for what I am - a quiet person who likes to mind her own business at times but can still be a fun person. Seriously, there are times we'd both be in our room (yes, we actually planned to be roommates) and just sit there and not say anything to each other. Sometimes we'll just quietly write in our own journals. There are nights we'd go crazy in our room with our other girl friends. I gained really good and close friends in Hawai'i - both boys and girls. There were a lot of people I knew but I only had a handful of really really good and close friends. I thought I was getting good at making friends. And I know I did. But it wasn't until my friends in Hawai'i either got married (and left) or went on their missions (which changed them in some ways - and in turn, our friendship as well which is still good but slightly different) that I realized I'm still that same person who can't make new friends. I wouldn't have made some, like the Gellors and the Taylors, if it weren't for Jesse's social skills.

That weakness was made more clear to me in one experience I thought I cremated and buried deep down inside (but suddenly surfaced again right now). I seriously wanted to get out and cry like a baby. I just felt so "uninteresting" and "boring" and "unsociable" ... and it has happened to me multiple times growing up. I just keep experiencing this "socializing" thing that I'm not good at, makes me feel sorry for myself, and makes me feel like I want to hide.

I started losing more of my "friends" (though we're not close) when I got engaged. It felt like gazillion daggers being thrown at me. And to make it worse, I had some friends  visit Las Vegas and didn't even bother to come see me. These things just made me feel I'm not worth spending time with, and that I am so unsociable in Hawai'i, they don't bother to visit me here. My one and only sister won't even chat with me anymore (she's engaged and very much in-love, so most of her chatting times are spent with her fiance even though both her and I are online), nor she asks for my help (even if I offer it) in her wedding plans. Unimportant - yeah, maybe that's the word that fits how I feel SOMETIMES (not all the time).

The ward!!! Oh yes, for our ward at church (which brings me back to that blog post of that sister). It's hard. Sometimes I want to be called in the Primary so I won't feel sorry for myself anymore EVERY Sunday. I know I'm not supposed to feel sorry for myself, but I can't help it. I try not to. But at the end of every Sunday service, that feeling just bursts out of me like some kind of deep ocean pressure waiting to break that submarine. I keep telling my husband I'm just not as sociable as he is, I'm a very shy person. And he says, "I was, too." He has a point but it still doesn't mean it's easy for me. I'll still try to make friends each Sunday, though.

Sorry to be such a cry-baby. Like I said on my status, blogging is like my whiskey (only when I feel down). So thanks for bearing with me. I do hope someday I will have even just one or two friends (excluding Jesse, of course, he's already my best bud) that I will be able to connect with and that is in close proximity to where we live.

5 comments:

  1. Hey Lois! No worries, I'm the exact same way! I had some great friends when I lived in Kansas growing up - like my whole life and as soon as I had to move during high school and I no longer had friends. And I'm one of those people who can't ever seem to keep in touch with friends either. I felt the same way when Travis and I got engaged too! Sometimes it's so hard to go to church even though everyone is really nice we still don't have any great friends. Anyway, you're not alone in being alone! On a better note, Caleb is getting so cute and big!! I hope you're enjoying Las Vegas, we'll have to come hang out some time, since we're only 3 hours away!

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  2. Lois, I am the same way. I am very shy at first but once you get to know me I am cool! I am not an approachable type either so I don't have many friends in my ward. Sometimes, I feel jealous for those sisters that have their husbands with them on Sundays. My husband is not a member so it's very difficult for me. I've been in my ward for 5 & 1/2 years now and I can say I only have a few friends that I can actually call "friends". On the other hand, I don't wanna be inactive again because of that(not having friends at church). I hope you will have many fiends at your ward in the future! =)

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  3. I'm not super social either. I have really close friends that I enjoy hanging out with, but everyone's busy and I only see them a once or twice a month if that.

    In regards to your ward, that can be a toughie. I've been in really good wards and I've been in not so good wards. The ward we just moved to has been great in that there are actually friendly people who make an effort to talk to me. In the not so good wards I made an effort to go to every activity possible and try and make small talk. Does your ward to play groups? Book club? Girl's night? If they don't, maybe you could suggest it. Good luck!

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  4. Hi Lois,
    I'm sure there are many people that have felt the way that you do now, at one time or another. You might be surprised to find out that there are probably others around you(even at church) that feel alone or shy, though you feel like the only one.
    I have felt that way sometimes over the years. Many times I have just sort of forced myself to go outside my comfort zone and extend myself(along with a prayer!). It usually works.
    I actually am a happy homebody most of the time:)
    Just give it time and try to keep on the lookout for potential friends and situations that can promote getting to know people. One easy way is just to invite a family over for Sunday dinner:) Try to go to as many church activities as you can, even sit by different people at R.S. each week...just little things. I'm sure in time the situation will improve and you will make new friends:) XOXO

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  5. Oh I just wanna jump on the plane and get over there to cheer you up. Seriously! I think I understand how you feel. Ako nga na madaldal na nahirapan magkaron ng friends non sa Pennsylvania eh.I hope that Nate will get a job near you guys so we can be forever friends and forever neighbors.How I wish.

    Cheer up.It's still maybe part of the adjusting period. Maybe in the next month or so you'll have a circle of friend where you and Jesse can always hang out. But really the Sparks and Taylor tandem is unbeatable!

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