For the first time in my life, people are starting to remember me and call me by name. Something has changed in my life this past year. I don't know what it is, but it's significant.
Literally my whole life, I have been forgettable and somewhat invisible. I have introduced myself to the same people multiple times for as long as I can remember. It was never just an every now and then kind of thing - it would literally happen every single time I would run into someone that I had met a few times but didn't see on a regular basis. It wouldn't matter that I was with the person who introduced me to them the first and second time. I would always get "Hi, I'm so and so, it's nice to meet you" or "I don't believe we've met before". Old people, young people, my age people, everyone. I became used to it, so I would just play along like it was the first time for me too. I assumed I just didn't have a memorable face and accepted it.
But my favorite were the people who would act like I was completely invisible - that was just as common in my life as the people who wouldn't remember me. My friend's friends would just act like my friend was the only person there, like I literally was not a human or even an object. I would get no eye contact, no acknowledgment, nothing.
Until about a year ago. Suddenly people here and there would start to remember me and actually see me. I don't know what shifted, but it was evident. More and more, it would happen; and now, people rarely introduce themselves twice or decide that I don't exist. I feel it has something to do with finally allowing myself to be myself. Since we got married, I've become more and more who I was designed to be. I definitely feel like I still have a long way to go, but it is a noticeable difference to me that I feel more free and less shy. I mean, people nowadays actually call me out that they know me from somewhere or they call me by name when I've only told them once. People yell my name to say hey from across a room. It's seriously bizarre to me! I honestly don't know how to handle it. For so long I've learned a certain way, and now I'm having to change. It's really nice to be acknowledged. It makes me feel like I matter.
I thanked my barista today at Brown Roof for calling me out by name to ask me if the music was too loud. I told him it meant a lot to me. He looked at me funny, but I'm sure it meant a lot to him.