So a couple weeks ago? That was intense. A very overwhelming day. It was fun, it was crazy, it was busy, it was the most massive family reunion I've ever been to and probably ever will. There were cross country drives, last minute flights, and everyone who's still in Orlando offering couches and tickets and whatever was needed to get people here. And the result was that for about an hour and a half a couple of weeks ago it was almost impossible for anyone to simply walk past BLT because there was a massive crowd in front of it making walking those fifty yards more difficult than navigating the crowds on black Friday.
It was everything I expected. It was awesome . . . and it was awful (and let's take the obligatory moment to observe how odd it is that two words with the same prefix and essentially the same meaning can have such opposite definitions). I've blogged before about how I am a majorly introverted person, and I have to admit that just knowing that about myself has always been a little confusing because I actually love being around people, especially people I know and love (which was a lot of the group in this case). But by the end of the night I was drained. So much so that it took me the bulk of the next day to recharge.
I haven't been in such a big group for such a long time . . . I'd forgotten just how intense it can be. It really caught me by surprise, which is more than a little tragic because in the end I didn't talk to anyone nearly as much as I wanted to. The whole situation just left me a little speechless, and in the end I could really only marvel at the size of the crowd and how many people had come from a gazillion states away - and how many people were still nearby, which was a lot more than I'd realized. Sadly, that also meant I did not get all the pictures with people that I'd wanted, although I did get some good crowd shots (pictures coming soon for those waiting, I promise!) and a few of the kind I was planning on. By the end of the night I was actually left more or less speechless - mostly because I was focused on continuing to . . . I don't know, function sounds a little melodramatic but I've been sitting here for literally twenty minutes trying to come up with the right word and it's just not coming to me. But honestly my mind just kind of went blank. Beyond, you know, instructions to keep breathing, or whatever.
Being social is hard. It's definitely easier when you're with people who you know like you - but it's still exhausting. And it turns out that five solid years of almost nothing but alone time doesn't work. I mean . . . it's nice and all, and kept the batteries in a pretty constant state of charged at the time - but it doesn't build up the kind of reserve you need for such a massive amount of socialness. I had worked out a pretty good balance before, but I completely forgot about it and before two weeks ago there hadn't been much of a need to rediscover how to manage.
I do hope I end up needing to re-figure it out though. To continue one of the many mangled analogies, Monica and Chandler have long since moved and even Phoebe is married, but you know they're all still getting together - obviously not spending every day at the coffee shop, but still seeing each other when they can. (side note: after you read this and feel really old, take a moment to notice that it was posted a year ago and even those ages are now off) After all, you know what they say - blood of the covenant is thicker than the water of the womb (fun fact! did you know that the full saying actually turns out to mean essentially the exact opposite of the way people mean it to mean?). Not imply anything about the viscosity of anyone's womb water . . . but it turns out some ties bind a little more thoroughly and long term than you think when you first start twisting the strings around.
So . . . here's to keeping them a little more tightly knotted these days. Assuming I can find the mental strength to do it.
P. ost S. cript
Speaking of Disney attractions that are tragically closed . . .