Monday, January 13, 2003

Today I told my friend John that I think I have Social Anxiety Disorder. As it happens, I don't even believe in social anxiety disorder, but I can come up with no other explanation for my recent decline in ability to socialize. John is manic-depressive, and anti-social in much the same way I've become, so he is a good person to talk to about these things, especially because he will tease me so mercilessly that I cannot help but feel better and then change the subject to Cary Grant. Unfortunately, we must eventually get off the phone, and I then go back to feeling small. Will can often tell when I am feeling small, because even my voice gets very small. Of course, sometimes my voice gets small when I am just feeling cute, but that is neither here nor there.

Presumably due to my unemployment and lack of a vehicle, I almost never leave the apartment during the day Monday through Friday. Now, I live in a nice neighborhood and the weather here is positively lovely, so I could very easily go out and just walk on a regular basis, but for some reason I don't. Occasionally Jenn and I will do something on a weekday, but other than that I really am a total shut-in when left on my own. On the weekends, Will and I rarely go anywhere, preferring the comfort of the living room, the DVD player, the computer, and our pajamas, not to mention each other.

When I find myself in social situations, I tend to be fairly shy unless I am with people I know well and feel comfortable with. This is not new. I think I was quite outgoing at one point in my life, but that stopped around the time I started to get my grown-up teeth. I can deal with my own shyness, and am quite used to it.

It's changed. I totally clam up when attempting to carry on a normal conversation with people I am fairly well acquainted with. I have trouble communicating with even good friends except over the telephone or on the internet. It seems as though the only person I am myself with (in person) these days is Will, and while I would choose him if I had to choose one person, I'd rather be able to talk to the rest of my friends too. Hell, I am finding it difficult to even say "please" and "thank you," which as far as I'm concerned are not optional.

I am also not accomplishing anything lately, whether it be laundry or writing or anything in-between. I am watching the same scenes of the same movies over and over, and though they are very comforting, I'm sure that I would benefit from variety in my routine. I'm spending too much time on the internet without really enjoying much of it. I am letting the dust on my bookshelves accumulate and the dirt on the floor become one with the carpeting. Don't get me wrong - it isn't disgustingly dirty or anything, but I know I could do much better and feel that I am failing Will, who works so hard to provide for me.

I don't like feeling as though there is something wrong with me. I am often somewhat depressed in wintertime, but this isn't depression. It's like I am stunted, incapable of moving forward. I'm actually quite happy on the whole, just - immobile and small.