I am exhausted, mildly disappointed, and yet very excited about this weekend.
Over the weekend a place called The Dallas Lavender Lane Farm, held a two day Jeep event. On Saturday the group that I am part of was there. I spent a lot of time talking and spending time with various group members. By the time the day was done, and I was ready to call it a night, my legs began cramping horribly. I had walked just under ten thousand steps, wearing shoes that do not offer the best support. Still, I was content with the way the day had gone. I had purchased a two day ticket, but as I crawled into bed, I wasn’t sure I would go.
Today, I sat here debating. I had gone yesterday. I would probably be alone today since so many of the group had gone yesterday. With an hour to go, I was shoving everything into my Jeep and preparing to go. I was going to face a fear. I was going to go somewhere alone. Then my son decided he would follow me and see who from the dealership where he works was going to be there. He stayed maybe half an hour and then was gone. I spent a while placing all of the decorations that were on her yesterday back in place. Then, what?
There I was, in the middle of the farm, surrounded by Jeeps and their people and yet alone. How do I set my anxiety aside and make the best of the day?
First, after Star was decorated, I set up my chair and set for a few moments. I was getting my bearings and giving myself a ‘you can do this’ pep talk. After a moment, I stood up and stepped out from between the vehicles. I turned to my left, and spoke to the people who drove the Jeep beside mine. It was brief, but it was a start. A couple jeeps down, I spoke to the people I met there. As I began to move away, I felt a bit more confident in myself.
One thing my son says about me, I’ve never missed a dog where ever we go. I used the dogs as an icebreaker. I spoke with owners while petting the various dogs. All the dogs were ready and happy to get those head scratches while their owners were always happy to talk about their dog.
I did glance at the variety of things the vendors were offering, but I tried to not hesitate too long at any one booth. Every time I did, the people there were quick to stand and start discussing the many wonders of the items offered. I listened and discussed but didn’t purchase. I had spent all I could on Saturday supporting the people and group of which I am part. Still, I was approaching and talking with people I do not know.
I was also determined to make ten thousand steps. I was close Saturday night, I was going to make it today. So I walked laps around the Lavender Farm. I would speak to people as I passed. Sometimes, I would even know them. As I walked, I observed everything around me. I looked at the various jeeps, I checked out the menus of the food vendors, I listened to the music. I was enjoying the glorious day.
The Lavender Lane Farm has a petting zoo of sorts. A large pig, a donkey and several goats of various sizes. Maybe more but those are what I saw, and tried to pet. The problem was I didn’t have food so they weren’t too interested in just a head scratch without a bribe first.
The friend who designed and attached the stars to Star, helping give her personality was there. We spoke briefly but they were with others so I didn’t want to keep them from the group they were with. I did know though that any chance of Star taking home a trophy disappeared. But, it was okay.
By this time a couple of hours had gone by. I was doing it, I was enjoying an event, on my own, and not feeling all the sneaky, dark feelings that social anxiety usually brings. When I grew weary of walking, I sat down behind my Jeep and caught my breath. I had brought water with me, and had eaten before I left my house. I was pretty well set, but with all the walking, I was getting hungry. To distract myself, I began walking again.
Walking, talking, learning, enjoying, living. Yes, that was it. I was living life as it is meant to be lived. Not hiding in fear. Not sitting back wishing I were brave enough. It is getting up, stepping out, and finding out how wonderful socializing with others can be.
I was right in that I did not come home with a trophy, but as I’ve mentioned at other times, I brought home something better. I brought home a tired body, an excited mind, and an entirely new outlook. I had told my son about the mistake I made yesterday and he, instead of laughing at me, reminded me of the time we saw someone do the exact same thing. My dogs are giving me looks of disappointment because they have already smelled the scents of all the other dogs I came into contact with. They will get over it, I’m the one who feeds them. At this moment, as tired and sore as I am, I managed 12133 steps, I feel that as I went above and beyond my desired step goal I also went above and beyond my goal to just have a good time. I brought home a day of contented peace and excitement and anticipation over the next great event.