Decorative Flower
Her Realm, Personal website and blog of Cole
Sep 02

Being an Extrovert is Weird

Summer is rapidly coming to an end, and although I feel like I’ve been incredibly busy, I haven’t done much to write home about. I spent a weekend in Milwaukee, but haven’t gone to any cons. There’s been a few day trips, some game nights, many long walks with friends, Pokemon Go playing and eating out. It was all fun. There was laughter all around, but nothing stands out.

Perhaps that’s because I’ve been doing so much of it. I am currently in the midst of being the most extroverted I’ve ever been. It’s awesome but so very weird.

I recognize that being able to socialize with people, both en masse and so frequently, without needing to head home and check out for several days or hours is directly related to my anxiety being at an all-time low. I can’t argue that this is a bad thing. It’s really quite wonderful.

But it’s weird that I can more easily talk to strangers and feel more comfortable in certain spaces. That I can meet up with new people with minimal anxiety and spend hours socializing without feeling the need to end it is amazing. I’ve spent a lot of days with multiple social interactions, something that would’ve been highly unlikely if not impossible a few years ago. It does have me questioning whether my introversion was something that stood on its own of or if it’s something of a side effect of my anxiety.

A few weeks ago, I assumed that I would eventually feel more anxious and introverted  and that all would come crashing down, but while I have a hectic schedule, I seem to have found some balance. I’m not so worried about the other shoe dropping.

Although, I still do enjoy and feel energized by my down time, it’s not as necessary as it once was. In fact, I need to remind myself sometimes to do other things that I enjoy that have taken a back seat to socializing. This weekend I plan to play video games, take walks, catching up on blogging and read.. all by myself. Not having any work until Monday certainly makes this easy. Of course, I’ve already seen friends and added other things to my schedule, but I never realized how many hours were in a day until I paused from filling them all up.

So, you know, if you want to do something, I’m probably down.

May 31

A Letter You Won’t Listen To, Anyway

No one is online to talk to so I will talk to my blog.

Dear Dave,

I wasn’t expecting to see a text from you today. In fact, I puzzled about who might be texting me on my birthday when so many people use Facebook to message me. Upon seeing your name, I felt a barrage of emotions – anger, frustration, anxiety et al – and none of them was “happy.”

At first, I thought about replying to your “Happy Birthday” text. I would ask you how you wanted me to respond. But then I realized it didn’t matter because either I couldn’t provide you with what you needed, or I just didn’t care.

You had no right to message me. I know this even as I blamed myself for not double-checking you were blocked on my phone after the New Year’s message, which elicited much of the same responses in myself. I shouldn’t have to block you after requesting radio silence for months, then finally deleting you from Facebook and blocking your messages there. For a while, you were blocked on my phone, too. My signals were clear.

It’s not like I wasn’t clear when I said I had to end our friendship, either. When I made the executive decision to end our friendship, I was not only positive it was good for me. I was sure it was good for you. After years of feeling disrespected, my behavior toward you became resentful. In short, I was an asshole and I justified it. And who wants to be that way? Whether you can see it or not, being apart means you no longer have to deal with that.

It’s obvious that the absence of friendship hasn’t opened your eyes any further, however. Unwarranted contact on various occasions – all of which I’ve ignored – prove that you don’t understand why I initially needed space and that you’re currently incapable of respecting me.

I am sure some part of you hopes that you can wish me a happy birthday and I will want to talk. But my immediate response was somewhere between trying not to vomit and crying. Because every time I’ve asked for space, you’ve ignored it, as if your need for validation and reassurance trumps my need for human decency!

At first, I thought a break was all I needed. And had you left me the fuck alone, perhaps it would have. Now, I know that a break is not enough. Every time you’ve proved that you can’t or won’t listen. If space were ever a reality, it’s one you’ve certainly altered by continuing to affect me so.

I don’t know if you see this. I do know that you would surely argue your point. That’s part of the problem. That’s almost all of the problem. That’s a problem I’ve been fighting tooth and nail to eliminate for almost a year now. And you know what?

I am done. With you. Because the positivity I need in my life — and have achieved over the last few months — is unobtainable when you’re around. I only hope you can find some for yourself, without me.

Sep 27


I am pretty conscientious about how other people feel. I try to be thoughtful and anticipate issues. I spend a lot of time listening to people about their feeling and advising them, and I’ve got a pretty good grasp on how people react to what type of situations.

It’s safe to say, I think, that people aren’t often upset or angry with me because of this. And when they are, it’s often because of how they filter and react to the world around them and less about what I have done. But because I have tried to do everything as “right” as possible, I wind up feeling so confused and hurt when people are angry.

I try to chase them down and change those feelings, and this rarely makes things better. But in my mind, I would — and often do — cut someone slack when they have good intentions. I am sympathetic to others’ feelings, even if it means understanding both sides of the issues when one person wants me to be on “Their” side.

The last 24 hours have been frustrating for me, as someone expressed anger in my direction although not entirely at me. I felt as though it was my fault and worried that more people were angry. Truly, the situation was no one’s fault and just a bit of a misunderstanding. At best, it resulted in a “bummer” for people involved who weren’t me. It boggles my mind that someone could become so angry over it.

At the same time, I know why feelings were running so high, and I also knew it had nothing to do with me. But it was hard to see outside my role and not try to fix it.

I think I need to realize that I can’t “fix’ another person’s feelings — and that I shouldn’t have to. Those feelings are on them, and I don’t need to let them drag me down, too, especially when I can see how irrational those feelings are.

But it’s hard. IT brings me back to my ex, who would hold every negative thing I did or “made” him feel — no matter how unintended — against me. This screwup might be the time he stops dealing with pathetic, unworthy Cole. This might be the time that everything falls to pieces, and it’s all my fault.

He was incredibly manipulative in that way, and while I can see in hindsight that’s neither a person I should love, a relationship that’s healthy or happy to be in or a situation that I am creating, those feelings still creep up on me.

After my divorce, I’ve tried and continue to try so hard to be above criticism, to be so good that no one could again blame me for anything.. even if that’s unrealistic. Because I don’t want to be the person my ex painted me as, whether or not he even believed it. Because I did.

And while I know I am not the same I person if I ever was that person, I guess. It’s also important to remember the people I’m dealing with now aren’t my ex.

This is perhaps a good place to leave off, with thoughtful reflection and while watching an episode of Girls Meets World about conflict in the background.

Aug 15

I suppose I ought to write something since it’s been almost a month since my last post, and what a month it’s been!

The first week of August included my cousin’s birthday, my aunt’s wedding, the annual fair in town and GISHWHES, which was exhausting yet exhilarating. It gave me anxiety, but also a reason to talk to everyone I knew. It tested my creativity, introduced me to people and reconnected me with old friends. While I woke up anxious on some days, I went to bed feeling accomplished.

We won’t have the results for a while yet, and while I don’t know that we will win, I feel happy with that our team was able to do and what I was able to do specifically! I’ve signed up for the coffee table book review team, so I get a peek at what some of the other teams have done, which has mostly be reassuring!

My sister, cousins and a lot of children I know participated and had fun. My sister in particular enjoy spending time with me “doing cool things.” I think I need to spend more quality time with her.

My aunt’s wedding was hectic but fun, and I had an overnight guest that weekend. There was a lot of scrambling as I finished up GISHWHES. Luck would have is that my main client took off this week, so I’ve been working on catching up with blogging.

However, I’ve also caught some sort of a virus, which resulted in a cold. It’s not unusual because stress makes my immune system tank. I caught it early enough to take some supplements, so it’s not as bad as it would be otherwise.

It hasn’t stopped me from enjoying what was turned out to be a silly and alcohol-induced game night with friends, and I’ve got the bruises and stomachache to prove it. In true Cole fashion, I tried to walk it off for five miles exactly, and now my knee is throbbing and not entirely happy with me.

I’ll spend the rest of the night relaxing with my kitties and playing video games, in which I’ve been making quite the progress during my week off! It’s already 5 in the morning. I don’t know where the time went!

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