The modern-day affliction of FOMO is something that we throw around all the time. It’s seen as a funny and ironic thing, labelled as such to give it frivolity and its’ own personality. But something that I haven’t spoken about before, at least not on here, is how it feels to miss out. All the time. To be reminded of that daily.
I have very fond memories of many of the milestone events through my life. I hold close memories from school, college, University, workplaces, birthdays, weekends. I could reel off hundreds of golden oldie memories and I guess I count myself lucky to do so. But behind the scenes, I’m forever berating myself for not being good enough to have been included in the wider landscape of these events.
When everybody recounts prom, for example, they recount not only the awesome end-of-school party thrown in our honour, but the multiple after-party invites that everybody had and couldn’t decide between. I was part of the Coolest People You’ll Ever Meet group, that is, the less popular group that were routinely bullied by almost every other clique in school. I absolutely loved my friends and I’m still best friends with a handful of them now, but there’s no denying to anybody that we were the nerds who often had to hide out in the library just to avoid having verbal taunts and physical objects thrown at us. And even then, being part of this group, I was never invited to that after-party or pretty much any of the social events on the calendar. I’d awkwardly show up to school whilst everybody chatted animatedly about Saturday night and suddenly they’d blurt out: ‘Wait, I didn’t see you there Michelle, where were you?’ Not. Invited.
When I scroll through my Facebook news feed and see photos of my old University ‘friends’, cheek-to-cheek in photos and declaring their best friendship and how they’ve just accepted an invitation to be their bridesmaid, I panic and feel unworthy. I can’t pinpoint why but I’m not close to anybody from University except for my best friend from home who attended the same Uni as me. Nobody from my first year except for Florence, my girl who switched Universities in that November. Nobody from my second year where I often felt so lonely that my Mama would call me for four hours each weekend. Somehow when nights out and events were being planned, I would be forgotten about until that dreaded Monday morning catch-up. ‘You should come out with us next week!’ Rinse and repeat. To this day, my two best friends from University are a childhood best friend and my girl Florence.
It could be said that you’re responsible for your experiences and thus I’m responsible for missing out. But you know what? I shouldn’t have to remind people that I exist and that I’m worthy of hanging out with. Maybe I’m not destined to be extended invitations to secondary events after hanging out a few times. And perhaps I’ve simply never gelled with any of these people because not everybody is your kinda person. I’ve made peace with the fact that I’ve almost accidentally become a lone ranger on a lot of fronts and, no, I have no idea what so-and-so is up to and, no, I wasn’t invited to their gathering or their wedding and nor did I know they’d done this or got engaged. Plus, I already have the best girl gang who share all of their breakfasts and new purchases and announcements to me on here 😉