I'm a homebody. When given the choice between heading up to the Sunset Strip to party at a bar or staying home in my pj's sipping tea and watching a movie, I'll choose the latter every time. So when Adam told me that a friend of ours was celebrating a birthday at Red Rock last night, I knew we should go, but I didn't want to. So much so that (when Adam wasn't looking) I went into the bathroom and cried about it like a child might cry about not wanting to go to school. I really, really did not want to go.
I've never seen a doctor about it, but I'm pretty sure I have some sort of social anxiety disorder. I care too much about how I'm perceived, I hate small talk and I tend to avoid strangers. I also had those pesky gremlins in my head, pointing out my flaws and how audacious it would be for a chubby, thirty-something in jeans and and a t-shirt to dare try and mingle with svelte, twenty-something would-be models with their high heels and mini-skirts in the heart of Hollywood. I felt old and fat (and tired after working with energetic first graders all day) and I just wanted the comforts of home.
But I'm not a child, I'm not old and I'm not fat. So I did what any self-respecting woman would do. I shook it off. I washed my face, donned my best pair of dangly oh-no-she-didn't earrings and put on a rocking shade of red lipstick. I braved the beautiful and the unknown, and I got by with a little help from my friends. And though it pains me to admit it, I had fun.
I write this in the hopes that the next time my shoulders begin to rise in nervous aprehension from the thought of a night out in the wild, I'll remember that all the bullshit in my head is just that - bullshit. It's time to grow up and get out. Let this be a call to arms for you too, dear reader. Don't let your insecurities keep you from living life. Take a risk and reap the reward!