I was thinking about insecurities the other day, namely, my own. But instead of wallowing, I was trying to put into words what insecurity is for me and what it does in my own life. Not for pity, but so maybe people can understand me a little bit better.
For me, insecurity means being completely comfortable with a group of people, a group of friends, but policing myself physically and vocally for an unfounded fear that everyone is looking at me, to judge, to dislike me.
The problem I struggle with is logically, I know that these people are my friends, new, old. They aren't looking at me to scrutinize. They want me to be involved and play, have fun with them, instead of being on the sidelines. If, for some reason, they are watching and judging, then they likely won't breathe a word of it to me. That says more about them than it actually does about who I am.
But logic doesn't matter to insecurities. You can tell yourself 'til you're blue in the face that you have nothing to worry about, the a nagging scream in your head, that you can't turn off, will say otherwise.
'They like me. They just want me to join in. I should join in.'
'But you're fat, they think you're weird. They're just being nice. No one really wants you around.'
'That's not true and I know it. They seek me out.'
'Out of obligation because you're always around anyway! They can't get rid of you, so just stay put, don't talk because they don't really want to hear it.'
That's how the conversation usually goes in my head, just varies by situation. I've been learning how to ignore the voice but most of the time, I just try to pretend it isn't there, even if that's all I can do. Sometimes, the insecurities win and I just make excuses as to why I don't participate more. That's my own baggage to deal with, not anyone else's.
When I do talk to people and participate, I often have a similiar dialogue going on at all times.
'Quit rambling, they're not even listening anymore. You're holding them socially hostage! They think you're weird and you talk an awful lot.'
So, I often end up apologizing for speaking too much. If I do this, please understand that I am just trying to make everyone as comfortable as possible.
For my friends that 'put up with me,' thank you. It really does mean a lot to have friends even though I don't think I should have them. Please understand that when I make excuses, or apologize, it has to do with my own insecurities, not you. Please don't stop trying to get me to join the conversation, play the game, go out and about. I'm getting there, slowly but surely.
Thank you for being patient with me, you have more patience with myself than I have, so your patience does help smother the insecurity.