I stood alone in the playground this morning, my hood pulled tight to stop the wind howling through my hair, not that it would have made any difference to the style, bed head is the new fashion style in my word. The rain was cold and I pulled my hands up into my sleeves.
I don’t normally do the school run on a morning, for this very reason but the husband was ill and so I said I would do it. I had got up earlier than normal and taken my medication along with 2 “extra happy pills”, I need to in order to even get out the front door.
From the corner of my eye I could see a crowd of mothers, standing in a semi-circle chatting away. Normal everyday mums, but they terrify me and I am scared of them making conversation, so I keep my head down and refrain making any eye contact.
I wonder if I appear unapproachable?
Even the kids had run off to find friends; there I was the loner as usual.
Within moments two other mums that I know came to stand with me and they tried to make small talk. I find these situations difficult. I never know how I am meant to act or behave. I end up saying something stupid, so I try not to talk at all. I feel out of place stood there.
I feel the anxiety raging through my body. The playground starts to spin and my body becomes a burning furnace. I want to run but there is no escape. I have to wait for the school bell to ring before I can make my escape.
“Sometimes I feel like a tomato in a fruit basket- Technically I belong, but somehow I still feel out of place.”
I am just another mum to them, OK admittedly I look like the Pied Piper after school while I round up my herd and we normally have a few extra kids with us too, but I still feel so “out of place” there.
The same happens wherever I go.
I feel out of place, I just don’t feel like I fit in.
To others I appear confident, inside I am a nervous wreck. I have learned to carry myself well. I paint a fake smile and off I go, but sometimes wearing the mask is draining and I just want to stay home, safe within my comfort zone.
Anxiety is ruining my life, I know that.
I wonder if I will ever feel an equal.
Even when with friends the little voice starts humiliating me, reminding me they are not really friends, just people who feel sorry for me.
What does it feel like to be normal?