There is something that have been part of me all my life but I did not write it down before. I was ashamed of it. Felt guilty towards it. I wanted to change myself to become another person.
Now, I think I am finding my inner peace and want to dedicate this coming out story to all the people like me in the world.
I am a weirdo.
I am one of the awkward persons you meet in your day or week.
That’s it, I’ve said it. I feel so much better.
You see, light social conversations are a nightmare for me. I am very bad at meeting new people and finding the right, light, casual, not too deep and not too shallow conversations to make at certain occasions; dinners with acquaintances, getting-to-know-people-closer meetings, orientations, the social meetings after the panel discussions or conferences, classmates, flatmates, neighbors, distant family members…etc.
Of course, over time (since I am 35), I have worked hard to “perform” a social person in all of these meetings. Sometimes it works very well and sometimes I make embarrassing remarks or positions. I used to be ashamed of those. So very much. Now I don’t think I care much. Perhaps it’s a good thing not assimilate, I tell myself. It’s OK not to fit in all the time. Especially I “trained” myself very well to give the impression I am an “everybody person.” Not awkward at all. Performativity makes wonders.
Unlike casual and light conversations among strangers or acquaintances, I find meeting a very small number of people, sharing drinks, cigarettes and having nice, personal and honest conversations very refreshing and empowering. These are my favorite moments about life.
I am scared of meetings that revolve 20-40 people. I say nothing in those meetings and I feel very self-conscious. Whereas I feel confident at meetings that revolve 100 ppl or more.
I was scared of public speaking but then I became fond of it, especially meeting with like-minded activists and comrades.
I can only do bonding-kind of relationships. That’s why I take friendships very seriously. And that’s why I sometimes value people I shared great moments with online (blogging or uprisings for ex) even though we haven’t met in person.
I don’t think I believe in the concept “socializing.” My brain and body don’t get it. I get disappointed at romantic relationships that don’t involve a real bonding. Interestingly enough, not all people need that sort of thing to be “in love.” I do.
In fact, I can only function in relationships (friendships or romantic ones) that center around bonding. It took me a while to understand this thing about me.
I am a very literal and precise human being. I love examples, long explanations. orientations, well-structed and detailed talk. Because my mind goes like this @($$&%^$(#(@ when I hear a general talk.
I stop listening to sentences that begin with “generally speaking.”
Use your words carefully, please.
I am very organized towards everything (meetings, dates, relationships, conversations, cleaning, buying, planning, going to a bar etc). I wish I wasnt but I am. I am so loving this post.
I am very punctual (unless I am down, unmotivated or depressed) and being punctual among a culture of unpunctuality is, well, frustrating, to say the least. I stop meeting with people who show up 30 or an hour late. I totally get turned off.
I bond very easily with animals. Not sure why I typed that here. Hmm.
Now the good stuff: I talk to myself a lot during the day. Part of my well-being is to understand myself, my new self that evolved during the uprising and the war. After all, I am living with myself ALL DAY. All my life. Sometimes I am not my self and I don’t recognize it. How to deal with that? My solution is that me and myself should talk about it.
These are not simple things. Not common things either. These habits and manners of thinking are sometimes isolating at occasions where casual talk or socializing is a “professional” part of your life as a student or worker. Even in your social and intimate life.
These types or preferences of relationships is difficult when you’re in exile or when you’re a refugee. Saying goodbye to your close friends and family, and entering a whole new space to find new ones, demands a lot of patience and energy that sometimes you have none.
Finally, I am so happy that I came out to this blog’s readers. To the people who feel they’re awkward; love your self and be confident about it. Life is too short to be ashamed.
Sat March 5th
4 thoughts on “My Coming Out Story”
Thanks for posting this, Razan. It spoke to me. I am happy to know you. Henry Lowi , Toronto
Nice to see you again blogging :)
This isn’t a comming out story this is a total wast of time.
I think this is the first time I have read something I could relate to so profoundly (apart from the punctuality part, ha!). I am still 21 and I am still in the process of learning how to “perform” socially, by imitation. I am a complete weirdo and unnecessarily awkward at times, whereas other times I can pull out a couple of magical jokes out of the hat and actual be able to make decent human interactions. I too have a need to bond with the people I meet, and have a hard time establishing superficial so-called “friendships” because it does not satisfy me completely and just seems pointless. Small talk makes my skin itch and it comes out so unnatural that I would rather seem rude and not talk at all.
Reading this brought a smile to my face, and though I am not in exile, I can still relate to it very well. Thank you for sharing your thoughts!
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