I had my first shift as a volunteer at the local animal-shelter today. It consisted of a lot of cleaning, and feeding the cats. The shelter also houses dogs, but because a) I don’t have any experience with them outside of ‘That’s a dog all right,’ and b) the meds I’m taking have a sticker that advice me to be careful when operating heavy machinery, it’s not a good idea for me to work with them. The thing about the meds is that the dogs might see it as a weakness on my part and take advantage of that. Given that there’s some that are bigger than I am, this is not a good thing to have happen.
This – the volunteering – is because part of why I went into therapy, apart from the depression, is that I don’t really know How To Do People. As in, how do I talk to people I don’t know? My therapist suggested getting into volunteer-work, because that way you get to meet and talk with people, without having to worry too much about the impression you make. You still want to come across as someone who can be left with the cats and not set the shelter on fire, of course, but there’s less pressure, I’d guess you’d could call it, of trying to become friends.
I know it sounds odd, to worry about How To Do People, given that I can talk just right with people I do know. It’s the getting to know them that’s the sticking-point.