I've always had a knack for finding reasons not to do things. It's not that I've already decided not to do them - often, the opposite.
I RSVP or sign up for something, but some time before hand, I hit a snag. I remember that the place has crap parking, or I don't have anything I feel comfortable wearing, or I realize that there may be social awkwardness with someone there ... and panic a little, and call the thing off.
(I thought about listing here some of the numerous events that feel victim to this, but suffice to say that, 1. It's too embarassing, 2. I probably wasn't 'sick' in the traditional way, even though I told you that, unless you think of it as an extension of mental health issues, 3. I'm sorry.)
I didn't really realize what a pervasive problem it was - and how totally shitty it was to do this to myself, not to mention other people) - until I skipped my company picnic due to one of these dumb things. I made the command decision that I wouldn't do it anymore.
Holy crap, it has been hard. I still get the attacks - the urges to blow it off or bolt - but luckily I can wait them out. It doesn't even seem like I need to really give myself pep talks, so much, just NOT act on the urge.
When I volunteered for a local science competition, I nearly bailed at just about every point in the process (I didn't know anyone, it was farther away then I had thought, my assignment was wrong, I was late for it because I kept being sent to the wrong places, I didn't really know what to wear (and did actually choose rather poorly, but no one cared), and I had never done anything like this before or had any experience) - but ultimately, I am glad I didn't. I stayed the whole day - even when things ran very late - which most people didn't. The people were totally awesome, they needed me more than I expected, and it was fun!
There have been a lot of feathers in my cap for this lately, with only one recent black eye. (Not knowing what to wear is one thing, but feeling inadequate on a costume party is kind of another. I did try to talk to my friend about this, to see if it was okay, but didn't hear back. We ended up being so busy that weekend, though - because I drove Wal out of state the next day - that it was lucky that I was not hungover the next morning...RATIONALIZATION.)
I get another feather for last night's wedding. I had an attack, stuck it out, and we did it! I ended up seeing many cool people who are not usually in town, being enjoyably drunk on New Years (open bar, yay!), and having an all-around good time - and of course, exciting to meet the friend's new husband and share her day. Wal's patience wore out half an hour before midnight, but it worked out alright. (All this despite not having done a gift before the day-of, knowing less than maybe 5% of the people, Wal having only met the bride twice (and one other guest), and of course, what wedding would be complete without clothing-etiquette questions.)
Pictures to be put on facebook later today, I hope. Maybe when the headache subsides.