I am nearly 66 years old. Just months away from it. And yet I’m still a mixed up mess of insecurity and self-doubt. I’m not 16 any more. I’m not in high school. I’m way more than an adult, I’m living the post-adult life. I haven’t grown out of some of the rages of adolescence that I was waiting so willingly to pass by.

Yesterday.

Run into someone I haven’t seen in some time. They make a quick joke. I make a joke back. My remark, meant to be funny, landed like a thud and made me look like someone whose social skills had died a slow and painful death by embarrassment.

Then.

I obsessed about it. Wondering if I should write a note saying, ‘oops, sorry’ not funny. But then thinking that they may not be feeling that way about it. But then thinking they may be. Then thinking what an ass I am. Then thinking, but were were in joking mode. Then thinking that I always take things too far. Then thinking that taking things too far is what got me as far as I’ve gotten in my work. Then thinking that I shouldn’t be thinking about this so much. Then thinking that I needed to think about it until I got a sense of clarity about what happens next.

It’s exhausting.

But not as exhausting as the sinking feeling in my stomach that I’d just made a big social mistake. Then pushing that feeling aside with the realization that it was just a moment, just a remark. Then letting my stomach fall farther from the propped up stilts I’d put to keep my stomach from dropping through my shoes.

It’s humiliating.

I’m an adult. I’m post-adult. I’m further from being 16 than I am from death. Shouldn’t I be past all this stuff. Why is it that I’ve never really grown up. Why do I worry so freaking much? Why do I let my insecurities and self doubt such a free range? Why won’t they answer when I call them back. Why are they always barking at the base of my self worth?

I got home.

Needed a nap.

Took one.

Old people can do that at least..

Print Friendly, PDF & Email