Today I had to do a thing.
I had to put on a suit (extremely rare), go to a big, nice office building (even rarer), and talk to a load of people about the charity I work for (thankfully just as rare as the others).
The office I had to go to was that of a big law firm. Me and representatives from eight other charities stood in front of our carefully prepared stands twiddling our thumbs until one of them decided to grace us with their presence for a brief chat.
You know some people really look like they know what they're doing? Really confident in themselves, comfortable, at ease, ready for any question which may be thrown their way? EVERYONE who worked for this firm looked like that.
I do not look like that. I look awkward. I look like I'd rather people didn't talk to me. Partly that is because I would rather people didn't talk to me. Because then I wouldn't have to talk back.
All this is because I'm shy.
Around new people, in situations unfamiliar to me, I am properly, debilitatingly shy.
The thought of having to talk to all these people made my insides go a bit funny and squirmy. Made me sweat from pores I didn't know I had. When one person was talking to me I could feel a bead of sweat running down my cheek. I don't think he noticed, but I expect he did notice how moist my hand was when he shook it. He would have been entirely justified in thinking I had cunningly switched my hand for a freshly caught haddock when he wasn't looking.
I also trip over my words. When I can remember them at all.
Hyper confident solicitor type with perfect hair and immaculate clothing: "Tell me a bit about [charity I work for]"
Me: "Well, erm, yes, we do lots of, erm, stuff. Really good stuff. And then there's some things we do too. Yeeeeeaaaaaah. Would you like a leaflet?"
*hands solicitor leaflet soggy with perspiration*
Oh yes. Love talking to new people. That's me.
So, if I could name one characteristic of my personality which I really, truly hope The Creature doesn't inherit it would be shyness. Yes. There are other traits I'd prefer him not to get, but that's the real deal breaker.
I want my son to be sufficiently confident and outgoing that attending networking events feels like a nice way to spend a couple of hours, rather than a form of torture. To be able to approach a girl he likes and let them know that he does. To not have to spend ages formulating the words he intends to say to new people, only to fluff them up on delivery or be shot down with a quick witted come back.
For anyone who has met me and is thinking "he didn't seem shy", try to recall the first time we met. Was I quiet until I'd had a few drinks? Or did I look like I was choosing my words extremely carefully? Because I assure you, on the inside, I was nervous.
What are the foibles and character traits you don't want to have passed onto your offspring? Or would you be happy if they turned out just like you? How do I stop Cam from inheriting the curse of shy?
Fill my box with comments and I'll get back to you once I've had a drink ;-)
Thanks for reading.