I had the weirdest experience last night in the fish and chip shop, (or fush and chup shop as my fellow Kiwi’s would say), I don’t know if you can relate to it or not.
I’d paid for my order and was clutching my little ticket with it’s winning number. I stood off to the side and was watching the ready orders being handed over the counter. I looked over to the line of people waiting to place their orders, and in an instant it was like I was seeing the entire scene from a different perspective.
Each person standing in the line looked so goofy and awkward, their eyes darting around, desperately craving to steal a look at the other people in the shop. Yet equally, or potentially moreso, desperately avoiding eye contact with their fellow humans.
We all looked so hilarious. Going about our business, strapping odd shaped pieces of coloured material over our bodies, so as to reveal a little but not too much skin. We were all so curious about each other, yet avoiding anything that would cause us to engage.
I felt an out pouring of love for all of us awkward, lumpy human beings going about our business.
I wondered how we missed our cuteness for the majority of the time. We bumble along with our heads down, missing it.
We’re shut down and closed off from each other because we hide what we don’t want others to see or know about us. Yet we’re all the same.
We’re all a mixture of nerves, self-doubt, occasional happiness, fear of rejection, desire for success, swirling loneliness, sickness, fear, hopes, dreams, attempts for love. But we hide this from each other.
We hide our true selves in an attempt to be accepted and validated by each other, yet if only we opened up a little and let go of our need to hide ourselves, then we’d realise just how similar we all really are.
It’s in the realisation of sameness that’d we’d get to breathe out a combined sigh of relief.
That’s when we’d all get to laugh at the insanity of our pretending, and we’d finally get to know what it’s like to truly be accepted and to fit in.
When we hide what’s going on inside of us, we’re telling ourselves that what we’re feeling, thinking and experiencing isn’t acceptable. We make up a version that we think is more acceptable and we express that to the world. Then we wonder why we’re always left feeling lonely.
I decided there and then to reel in the character I’d had on show for others, and let myself know that I’m okay exactly as I am. We all are. In all of our awkwardness and uncertainly, we’re doing just fine.
It’s okay to laugh at ourselves and to let it be known that we’re all just bumbling along, trying to make the best of things and work out how the hell we can experience a little more joy and a little less stress.
With love from one gloriously awkward creature, to another.