Today will be different I tell myself. Walking down the sidewalk, beer in one hand, ice in the other. Today will be different. Most of the people inside will know your name, you like to talk so talk. Today will be different.
Standing around, saying my hellos, trying to make small talk. I realize something. Today may not be different. No matter how many people know my name or recognize my face I’m still alone in this crowded room. I used to think it was social anxiety then I thought it was just good old-fashioned introvert like behavior but now I’m not so sure it’s any of those things.
Sometimes I feel like something inside of me is broken. That piece of me that lets people in, that makes and keeps friends. Or maybe people just don’t like me. I’ve thought about that a lot to be honest. I know our generation isn’t supposed to care about such trivial things but I do.
My writing has made me known. So most of the time people will recognize my name as soon as I introduce myself. I like that feeling but what I’ve come to realize is that it’s a temporary feeling. This weekend I realized I have no friends. I know a lot of people, I occasionally talk to them but I have no real friends.
When the concept first hit me it scared me.
Now at 5:00am on a Monday morning I’m coming to accept it. I don’t know if this will always be the case but it’s the case now and I have to live with the hand I’ve been dealt. In my heart my wife will be my best friend so I won’t have to worry about this but that doesn’t mean I don’t think about it.
I can be at a book signing with a hundred people waiting for my autograph and feel like a stranger. I can be at a family holiday dinner and feel like I don’t know one person in the room. Sometimes it scares me how detached I am.
I want to blame this isolation on the writing but I’m not sure I can.