I Cried After The Christmas Party

Hey friend! You’re back. Ready for Part II of my twisted Christmas carol?

If you haven’t had a chance to catch up on Part I, start here. Trust me, this entry will make a bit more sense if you do.

Don’t worry, I won’t share the rest without you so take your time, and come back here for the second half. I’ll be waiting 🙂


 

All caught up? Great. Let’s get back to the party. 

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As I mentioned, this party was the first event that I was able to spend with my entire team. It was an opportunity for me to see them outside of the office and to get to know them when they aren’t in work mode.

This was my chance.

Things started out fine as we were ushered to our assigned area — two tables. I was actually a little disappointed that we were separated because that meant that I couldn’t socialize with the entire group. But I went with it.

I sparked a conversation with a few of our content editors about, guess what, the blog! I can’t stop talking about this y’all. It’s great.

For a moment, I felt fine. I was back to my usual, social self and had the thought that perhaps, I wasn’t such an oddball after all. Until everyone stood up to mingle. Usually, this is my arena. I hop in the ring and swing a K.O. every time. This isn’t because I’m confident, it’s simply because I’ve had a TON of experience. After all, I’ve moved my entire life so I’ve gotten pretty good at making friends with strangers.

But these weren’t strangers. These are my new coworkers so the stakes felt a bit higher. As everyone stood to chit-chat, naturally everyone gravitated into separate circles to talk. Again, I didn’t think that I’d have any problem with this but to my surprise, I crashed…and burned.

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I would make my way into a circle and stand there awkwardly, waiting for my turn to chime in. But it never came. Occasionally I’d catch someone’s eye and blurt out a few things to get something going, but it would end in a silent whisper and minutes later, I was looking around for another group to interrupt.

You can only imagine how unbelievably defeating this was for me. I’m not used to feeling this awkward. I was trying so hard to be cool and interesting but I was left feeling deflated and ultimately exhausted from my failed attempts. For everyone else, it seemed so effortless. And there I stood, overthinking, self-critical, and alienated.

Related: The Struggles of a New Girl

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As the party went on and my awkwardness nearly tripled, my anxiety was at an all-time high. Was something wrong with me? Was it something I said or didn’t say? Do I not know how to relate? Or am I just an agency girl who doesn’t know how to be a corporate girl?

It’s been four days and I still haven’t been able to answer any of those questions. 

To add insult to injury, I carpooled to the event with one of my neighboring deskmates so I couldn’t make a quick escape to run from my discomfort. I patiently stood by as she naturally clicked with everyone and laughed and smiled about their conversation. I couldn’t help but wish that it was that effortless for me.

But of course, I don’t go down without a fight. So I kept trying.

Finally, she finished making her rounds of goodbyes and was ready to head back to our parking garage. Internally, my inner voice was rejoicing at the idea that I could run back to my car and hide.

When we finally arrived, I couldn’t get to my car fast enough. Initially, I wanted to bolt out of there and get home as fast as possible. But I needed a drink to come to grips with how overwhelmed I was. I just couldn’t shake it. So I dropped off my things and rushed to the nearest bar.

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Hi! How are you doing this evening young lady?
What can I get you?! 

May I have a Long Island, please?
If you’d be so kind, make it strong

You got it! One Long Island coming right up.
Rough night?

You have no idea…

 

If you haven’t tried a Long Island, I highly recommend it if you’re trying to forget about your problems, erase a rough day, or for a quick drunk to get your night started. When the bartender arrived with my sparkling glass, he could probably see the defeat in my eyes.

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I don’t think I’ve ever consumed one of those things so quickly. As I made that slurpy sound when I reached the end of the glass, my emotions took over and I just couldn’t keep it in.

There I was, in an ugly Christmas sweater crying over an empty glass at the bar. 

I sat there as my eyes welled with tears, and thought about my 12-year-old self and wondered if she’d be proud of where I was in that moment. Tears running down my face, disappointed in myself.

I thought that following my dream was the right thing to do. But what if my dream job wasn’t as dreamy as I thought? What now?

 

What do you think? Are dream jobs a real thing? What should I do?

By the way, the drink hit the spot. I came home and slept like a baby. You should try one.

 

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20 Comments Add yours

  1. They surely are. I don’t think it’s the job but your coworkers. We some people you hit it off right away, with others it either takes time or it never happens. How long have you been there already?
    What I want to say is IT’S THEM, NOT YOU.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you sugar ❤ I've been here since the end of September. But you basically hit it right on the head — some people you hit it off right away (which was my old job), and others you just have to wait and see. I'm a little nervous that it's going to be the latter…

      Liked by 2 people

      1. But again, it’s not you. For some reason, I never liked socializing with my colleagues, rarely even a drink after work. It felt awkward, ‘having’ to talk about our private lives and dirty laundry. I could never relax, always thinking- what if sth goes wrong, or I say sth I don’t want to or they confide in me when I’m not ready to listen. So, I decided long ago to divide the too-my real friends vs my coworkers, people I meet only when at work. And it worked ALWAYS. Besides, we confided at lunch time and used any break to bitch about the work or boss or anything. So, don’t think too much (overthinker, ha), if it happens, fine, if not, fine again. It means it was never meant to be.

        Liked by 2 people

      2. Wow, you make a powerful point. I think the Millennial and extrovert in me puts so much emphasis on relationships and friendships but you’re completely right – it’s good to keep them separate every once in a while.

        This may be my first experience applying that so wish me luck! My conscience can hold a pretty good conversation so I should be able to keep myself company during the day right? Ha!

        Liked by 2 people

      3. Fingers crossed.
        You’ll read about it in one of my posts soon, this whole extrovert/introvert thing.

        Liked by 2 people

      4. Awesome! I’ll be reading. I have one in the queue myself, simply because I think there are so many myths about being an extrovert. Can’t wait to hear your thoughts!

        Liked by 2 people

      5. Exactly. There’s more to it than meets the eye.

        Liked by 2 people

      6. Looking forward to it (:

        Liked by 2 people

  2. First things first I love Long Islands! When I bartended they were my specialty, I would even add flavor to them lol Another story for another time lol Its not your job, but the co-workers so dont get discouraged with your job. I remember when I moved to a new school and joined the basketball team. No one really had too much to say to me, and everyone had their own group of people to talk too. It wasn’t until a scrimmage game where I did beyond great and caught everyone’s eye. That’s when everyone was all hey girl hey lol Dont let the party get you down, when the moment no your moment presents itself do your thing and you’ll see a shift in everyone else.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Oh honey, we are going to be great friends! I’m going to have to try one of the flavored ones! I’d love to hear the story.

      But yes, I’m trying to keep the two separate and evaluate them as individual things. I enjoy the work and find it very valuable but there are a few cons too. The relationships are an entirely different animal (as you’ve read), so I’ve got quite the battle going on haha!

      I appreciate your story and your advice! I don’t feel so alone 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Yaa Yaa says:

    To answer your question, I believe dream jobs exist, but like everything else in life (eg., dream guys), there’s going to be some not-so-pretty sides. From what I’ve read on your blog so far, it seems you like your job. So, perhaps you just had a bad day.

    Office holiday parties are tough. My office holiday party was yesterday and something similar happened to me. My teammates sat a table and since there was no chair left for me, I had to sit with another team. I felt so awkward! Although I had seen these people around the office and gave them a friendly greeting, how was I going to speak with them at length? Everyone at the table knew one another. I was the odd one out. I wanted to get up and walk out.

    One thing I’ve noticed is that co-workers who are friendly with you in the office act differently when they’ve had a few drinks, have their “hair” down and are hanging with their office besties. If you’re not in the clique (which is understandable since you’re relatively new to the company), then it may explain why you felt out of place. I hate cliques, especially when I’m new. In settings where I have cope with them, I’ll find someone in the corner (cause there’s usually at least one wallflower) and strike up a conversation. Together, we’ll mingle with the others in party!

    Anyway, I know how you feel. It seems like you have a sparkling personality and will be fine at the next office shindig :-).

    Liked by 3 people

    1. My dear friend Yaa Yaa (: thank you for this. It reminds me that I’m not making this all up and going crazy.

      It definitely has been a challenge but I’m hanging in there! I’m going to try not to worry and see where the wind takes me! I appreciate you ❤

      I have a surprise for you tomorrow!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. zakeeyak says:

    Hi! I’m going to take the unpopular opinion that there is no such thing as a dream job. We all have an idea of where we would like to be, and what we would like to be doing, but the reality is that every situation has its challenges and they’re usually unexpected.
    That doesn’t mean the work isn’t exactly what we want to do, it just means it comes with a trade-off of things we don’t want to do. I feel like a true “dream job” doesn’t take that into account – but being happy in a position may be just being able to deal with the crap.
    As to the social situation – I think it will get better. Especially the first event at a new place – take it from a life long introvert : it’s the worst. As you get to know people better and they get to know you at the very least you’ll be able to better participate in some of the cliquey conversations even though they may not be what you would choose. Someone mentioned keeping work friends separate from socialising friends and that’s probably the way to go. But be gentle with yourself, and judge the job by the work – not the Christmas party. Or at least – not the first Christmas party! ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. YES! I love the unpopular opinion. I agree with your point. I think that’s a part of me is disappointed because I thought that this was the untouchable, perfect, “dream job”, but like all other jobs, it has its cons and unique challenges. Some, that I don’t like.

      For now, I am going to be positive, stay true to myself, and see if things get better naturally. If that’s not the case, then I will welcome the next big thing in my life and accept the good and bad things of whatever that opportunity is.

      Thank you so much for your thoughts and for your encouragement! Truly, it warms my heart and I appreciate it far more than I can explain ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Sm00chezzz says:

    Long Island ice teas are amazing!!! So reading this reminds me of a situation I had a few months ago. My son attends one of those fancy rich schools where there are 2 or 3 minorities in the entire grade of 44 students. Now I’m not rich but he received a large scholarship to this school based on his academics. Anywho they are constantly having mixers and event for the parents and I swear the first two I went to went down exactly the way yours did. Everyone either knew each other because their children came from the same pre-k school, their older children are in the same class or they live in the same area. So it was really hard at first because of that. I would just say dont contemplate wether you made the right decision just yet sometimes it takes a few times. Especially in adult life making friends as a child is easier because children are fearless and just more acceptable. Plus as long as you are comfortable at work during work who cares about once a year holiday parties. If your job allows next time bring a plus one

    Liked by 2 people

    1. First things first: congratulations to your son for his intelligence and his scholarship!! I can only imagine how much of a culture shock that must be as the minority (I went to a prodominantly white high school). I struggled to find myself as a result.

      ANYWAY. Thank you for sharing and for your encouragement! I’m going to give it some time and try to be optimistic. I’m so used to trying to plan my life to the T but being an adult means that you have to accept what you cannot change and still find happiness in that. So with that being said, I will promise you that I will try my best and see where God plans to take me next 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Sm00chezzz says:

        Thank you and yes it is but I’m managing. Yes focus on what’s important to you the most. Your dreams and aspirations are far more important than any else. I wish you the best and from what I read you seem to be quite amazing. Keep up the great work and I look forward to reading your next adventure.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Absolutely! Thank you so much for being so encouraging. You’ve got me blushing girl! Thank you for being a part of my blogging journey ❤

        Also, a huge congratulations on your Liebster Award from @talkswithtati. You deserve this!!

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Sm00chezzz says:

        its, true and thats one of the main focuses of my blogging is to uplift people. im glad to be apart of your journey. i feel like a made friends with you and @talkwithtati.

        Thank you I’m so excited. After a long day that was the best thing ever.

        Like

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