Day 2 was a rollercoaster ride of emotion, for a bunch of weird reasons. I’m currently deep into an online military course where six (!) of us are trying to write a paper on Iran. It’s six cats trying to herd each other via email, thousands of miles apart. And I got volunteered to cobble together the final product. And it’s due on Sunday. And we keep having conversations about rewriting the whole thing, which I keep vetoing.
Anyway, I had to skip a few workshops to diddle around with this fucking paper because my military career depends on it. By the end of the day, I realized I wasn’t even close to meeting my conference goal (make a friend) because I’ve been thinking about Iran more than mingling. But it was okay – I was going to schmooze like hell during the RITA awards ceremony that evening!
Since I’d seen pics of people at the RITAs in ball gowns, I figured it was a classy affair and dressed accordingly. Well, there were a few folks there in nice clothes, but I was definitely on the extreme end of the spectrum to the point I felt awkwardly overdressed.
“I thought this was fancy…” I whispered to a woman heading to the ceremony dressed in jeans.
“It is,” she assured me, “for some people.” Those “some people” were me and maybe a dozen others out of 3,000 attendees.
Normally I’d just shrug and own it, but I also walked in late. Apparently the awards started at 7pm sharp – no mingling session. I had to sit down at a table in the very back with a bunch of ladies who already knew each other well and were friendly enough, but with the awards in progress there was not time to socialize. In between awards, the ceremony showed videos of attendees sharing heartfelt stories of their eternal friendships, because they’re all one big family.
As I sat there, overdressed, late to the party, having no friends, and worrying about fucking Iran, I felt my throat begin to tighten…oh shit, I’m about to cry.
I’ll admit it – like Dawson I’m kind of sensitive, as most writers are. I cry sometimes, but for the love of God never in public! Unfortunately my cortisol levels (i.e. stress hormones) had shot through the roof, and no matter how my rational brain told me I was overreacting, the train was already off the rails. And so I ran back to my room to lose my shit in private.
And that was Day 2! Chris beat Zelda on his Nintendo Switch (yes, he brought it with him during our Disney World vacay) and the ending was super-lame, so that didn’t help things. For Day 3, I plan to get a good night’s sleep so my cortisol levels can go back down to normal, rally in the morning, and try to hit my goal again. Onward!