Another lunch date today. Don’t worry — this isn’t lasting long. Restaurant Week is almost over, and I’ve spent quite enough in just these two lunches. But it’s worth it. Yesterday it was the experience of going to a swanky restaurant I wouldn’t go to normally, today it was just delicious food and wonderful conversation with a good friend. Neither of us could decide what we wanted, so we opted to each get a different entree and just split them down the middle. Which is how I ended up with both an amazing burger served on a bolo levedo, as well as an oyster po’boy. A bolo levedo, if you didn’t know, is the Portuguese version of an English muffin, except made with a sweet dough. It’s the perfect foil to salty and savory sandwiches. My favorite thing to get at my local diner is a bacon, egg, and cheese sandwich on a bolo levedo. Yum!
In keeping with my aim of dressing more nicely, especially knowing that my friend is a Very Sharp Dresser, I wore my dark rinse blue jeans, my red fancy shirt with the white polka dots and the puffed sleeves, and a white tank underneath. On my feet were my awesome gold velvet flats with the bling. I thought I looked rather stylin’, till my friend showed up. She was wearing a skirt with knee-high boots and looked amazing. But then she always does. If I could borrow a sense of style, I think I would steal hers. She always looks amazing, and only wears things that really flatter her.
You know, I think I try too hard with people, honestly. I’m trying to step back a bit and let them come to me, instead of me always bugging them. But I know how I feel when I don’t hear from someone, and I don’t want to cause that person the same feeling. At the same time, when I don’t try to initiate things, nothing ever happens. It’s a delicate balance, and one I am trying to cultivate.
It’s a difficult thing, though. I’m not very good at interpersonal relationships. My parents are kind of loners, which isn’t a bad thing. It’s just the way they are. And while I am somewhat the same way and perfectly content to spend most of my time on my own, I can also crave some sort of social life. I don’t need one, but I enjoy knowing that it’s there if I just reach out a bit.
When I first moved here, we were only one of four families on the street. There are now twice that, and I’m friends with almost all the new people on the block. But the folks I knew beforehand, they were hard to read. Ms Cheez-It, who made us feel really welcome when we first moved in, has quietly absented herself from just about all interaction with me. I saw her a month or two ago, waiting on the maintenance people, so I figured I’d stop by and say hi. We had a lovely little chat in which I suggested getting together for another pizza night, but I never did hear from her. I used to stop by and say hi at the cafe where she works, but after a while it felt like a one-sided relationship.
The last thing I want to do is force myself on somebody. I feel it happening sometimes, so I try to let them go. It’s just not a skill I have, I don’t think, knowing when to keep going and when to let go.
There should be a class one can take, a class on how to make and develop friendships and the proper way to maintain them.
Or maybe I should just realize that if it’s this much work to maintain a friendship, that it’s not worth keeping it up. Friendships should be easy to maintain and develop, not a lot of work. Most of the friends I have, we may not talk every day or email every week, even, but when we see each other, even after an absence of months or even years, it’s like we saw each other just yesterday. That’s the sort of friendship that I enjoy, one that’s easy to develop and maintain, one that just happens naturally.
I think I need to realize that I shouldn’t have a million friends. I am somewhat of a loner, and I’d rather have a small circle of really good friends than a huge group of acquaintances. And I need to realize that not everyone will even want to be my friend. I so want to please people and have people like me, but it just isn’t possible.
I guess that’s just part of getting older and maturing, figuring all this hard stuff out. Eventually I’ll get there. It just takes me longer than everyone else.