Snoozing my reminder for the holiday party at my B-School for the third time last evening, I pinged K. “Polaama?”. Receiving a nod from him, I wrapped up for the day and after a bit of hesitation, left my purse at my desk and headed out with my fleece jacket just in case it was cold outside my office. Opening the door, I felt a mix of nervousness and excitement. Holiday parties are something that I dread. I feel awkward and out of place most of the time. This time the excitement stemmed from the fact that I get to show off my classroom and class mates to K.
Waiting for the door to open, K and I joined a few of my classmates with their respective families in a series of introductions and small talk. Walking inside, we wrote our names down for a raffle and walked down to get something to eat and drink. Pulling at K I showed him everything inside from the coffee machine to the exact seat where I am to be found each class day. I pointed at empty chairs around me noting who sat where. Standing in that empty room with K I realized how proud I was to belong there and prouder still to be able to share it with K.
The next hour or so passed quickly in bouts of conversation, chewing on dry bread and exchanging stories of how we met. We even walked out with an umbrella, a card holder and a pen. Spoils from the raffle.
On the way back, we analysed the people we met and our disparate opinions on them. It was a fun evening. Not from the party itself but for that moment of shared emotion in that empty classroom.
Every time, I go through this anticipation anxiety, I cannot help wonder if the other people there feel the same. Do they feel intimidated by me as I feel by them? Do they take a deep breath before they step out of the car and calm themselves before flashing a smile and acting like they own the world? Looks like all my biggest battles are in my mind.