I’ve never been all that big on family events. Dinners and barbecues, weddings and celebrations, with my family have never appealed to me. I’d rather not go. My extended family gets along great, from what I can tell, but I can’t seem to find the same comfort in their company.
That said, large parties or get-togethers with my friends make me uneasy, too. I used to drink to help assuage the nerves. Work events could get a bit awkward. It might be that I get overstimulated. I just know that I get uncomfortable when there are a lot of people around.
Six might be my max.
This weekend, we attended two Thanksgiving dinners. Both were lovely. One was busier than the other, which was more intimate. Going forward, it’s looking like it’s going to be that way. That’s what happens when two lives come together – you share your space, things, and experiences. You do things you would otherwise not because of your commitment to that person you’re choosing. It’s interesting.
On our way home tonight, I was remarking on how my Thanksgiving weekends are usually four days of quiet. Nothing happens. In years passed, I would make a turkey dinner for myself. It was never a lonely experience, despite how sad it sounds. Fran’s Restaurant, the diner, had a turkey dinner special on for $35 this weekend, complete with a slice of pumpkin pie. I almost wish I’d known about it last year. I’m okay with doing things on my own.
Family dinners, like the ones we attended this weekend, are meant to bring people together. You’re supposed to share with each other your stories and laughter. This weekend, we were asked to go around the table and share what we’re thankful for. That was a hard ask. Not because I’m not thankful, but because I didn’t want to share. I don’t know the last time I told my own parents what I’m thankful for.
Maybe it’s belonging that I find unsettling. I didn’t ever think about that when I was with only myself. This weekend, I didn’t mind going because I was with somebody I want to be with. It’s her company that I find comfort in.