Social AnxietyI haven't been socialising well lately.
I've been forcing myself to go out because when I stay home I feel sad and lonely.
But when I'm out and I'm surrounded by people ...I still feel sad and lonely. Maybe even more so?
Sometimes people are nice to me, and they start to talk to me, and I forget how to be a person.
I stare at them strangely and furrow my eyebrows and try to answer their very simple questions like "how are you?" and "what do you do?" and "how do you know Felicity?" and I just get flustered and end up saying something utterly strange.
Then, I apologise for being a bit strange and I try to assure them that I used to be able to answer such simple questions, in a timely manner, and sometimes even with borderline charm!...but by this point I'm rambling, which just makes me seem stranger.
Recently I walked into a place where I expected to encounter a total of 3 people I knew.
But when I got there, there were 7 or 8 people, and more arriving, and I felt like I was being punched in the chest in slow motion.
As all the air was pushed from my lungs, I escaped and found a small dark space.
I managed to talk myself down from my first panic attack in years.
I did go back out, and I sat in the room where all the people were.
I ate the lovely meal that was prepared for me. I could feel everyone in the room watch as my violently trembling hand as it lifted the fork to my mouth.
So if you ever encounter me in a room full of people, I apologise in advance.