I started isolating myself. And after a while it became all I knew. It was my only identity. I just didn’t belong anywhere. There was no one I could relate to. There were, but I couldn’t get anywhere anymore, because the isolation became so much a part of me. When the time came that I wanted to rejoin humans, I wasn’t able to.
Being by myself for a long time, I was my only companion. I could see other people’s emotions, but I didn’t know how they thought about themselves. I thought social people didn’t have internal battles because they always seemed to be outside their heads, but that is not true. I am always inside my head. Beating myself up. I can’t escape the guilt and the feeling that I am nothing and such a waste of everyone else’s time and attention. I feel like a burden.
I realized that that is not true. People care. I just was never able to see it because the anxiety, isolation, and guilt made me kill myself emotionally. I am all alone. But not anymore. I just have to learn to realize it.
I found out that I have no idea about certain concepts essential to human experience. I do not know what it means to be missed, to belong, or what happiness is.
To me, people just come and go. Sure I miss them, but I don’t contact them. I don’t care anymore. But I never forget them and how they made me feel. It is impossible for me to think of people missing me. I seem so unimportant and blah. I don’t know if anyone misses me. I don’t think they do. Belonging is something I’ve never felt before. What does that mean? How does it make you feel? What is that? I wish I can experience it. Maybe that is what happiness is. I’ve heard that happiness is something you can do on your own. But I don’t have the emotional capacity to grasp happiness. There are times I get excited about things, and I try to make it last for as long as I can. Mostly, I’m just numb about things. I am always “okay” but I don’t know what that means.
I feel like I understand myself completely but at the same time have no idea what I am. I like being different. I just wish to be able to talk to people without trembling and regretting everything I did or said. I want to be able to connect with people and actually keep the connection instead of throwing it away so easily.
An amazing poem describing what it’s like to have social anxiety: Don’t Make Me Speak by Anna