Sixty Nine: My Dehydrated Confidence

“To succeed in life, you need two things: ignorance and confidence.”  – Mark Twain

On Monday I had scheduled a meeting for the garden club at my daughter’s school. I found myself aflutter worrying that no one would show up, that there would be a lack of interest in attending next month’s weekend building event, and a host of other concerns. People showed up. Some even brought snacks!

The meeting itself was a success, but I was a shrinking violet in the crowd. Now these are my type of people – people that want to collect and organize in the name of community gardening. That familiarity should have made it easier for me to come out of my shell, but I was still on edge. Have the passing years not given me enough opportunities to grow into a more confident person?

It got me thinking that, for me, moving confidently in the world is a skill that requires ongoing practice. I have always needed to reach that tipping point where a room feels more familiar than not for me to be able to successfully integrate socially. Egos are such boastful yet fragile things. Perhaps part of it is that for five plus years I’ve been traveling in parenting circles, and therefore somewhat out of practice in socializing with adults who’d rather not talk about diapering choices or placental encapsulation.

I accept that I’m not a crowd-rouser, but there are times when it just feels downright socially awkward. I jump into the fray because I value participation deeply, and so be it if it means that I am coy and reluctant before I am confident and assured.

Are there qualities you feel that you should have developed further at your current age?

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