My best friend Diane is good for me in so many ways; where I tend to be shy and reserved, she is gloriously confident and bold. Where I am soft-spoken, her wonderfully boisterous laugh rings out across a crowded room. Diane is like my Dan, their inner child is alive and well. Mine? Well, she is sort of a wallflower- that is, until this evening. What changed, you ask? This:
We enjoyed a nice, sedate dinner with colleagues, and then decided to walk to Walgreens to pick up water for our hotel room. That fateful decision led us right by a Florida gift store; Diane saw the mouse ears and it was all over. I am pretty sure that the smiling cashier didn't believe me when I (truthfully) told him we hadn't had a drop to drink- we were just this naturally goofy.
And then Diane said the words that strike fear in the heart of any card-carrying shy introvert; Put it on- we're wearing these to Walgreens. I died a little death there, surrounded by more Mikey Mouse paraphernalia than you can shake a stick at. This woman will be the death of me.
Her joy and laughter were contagious, however. I've had a horrible summer- I'm tired of feeling heartsick and sad….I'm in!
I felt my inner child curl into fetal position, but nevertheless I persisted. Blazing cheeks and mortification be damned- I was going to walk my fifty-four Year-old butt into Walgreens with my best friend and hold my head – and my Minnie Mouse ears- high. People smiled at us all along the way- some looked at us like we were nuts. Diane paraded confidently ahead of me and I slowly began to let go and flow with it.
I was Minnie Mouse, dammit- even if just for ten minutes, I was going to drag my inner child out and she was going to like it- or at least humor me. We even walked back to the hotel and got onto the elevator with a wonderful family who laughed along with us, or at us, or whatever. The point is, I didn't spontaneously combust because I did something silly in front of people (at home, I'm silly all the time). We
Spread a trail of joy here in Orlando, just as sure as if we had our own personal Disney parade. And it was fun.
I think I heard my inner child giggle- maybe even guffaw a bit. Maybe it won't be as hard to convince her to come out and play again the next time. We have a long week ahead….anything could happen. Stay tuned!