I definitely consider myself to be an out going person. I feel comfortable talking to just about anyone from little kids to the President (not the current one, I have not met him). I like talking and even prefer talking rather than email or texting.
However, small talk has proven to be difficult lately and I am sometimes left feeling awkward and inauthentic.
Typical small talk...
Hello. How have you been? So what's new with you? How is the family? What are the kids doing these days?
I answer the best I can and usually divert the conversation towards Carter and Luke's activities or about school for all three boys.
The vast majority of the time, I make things sound as optimistic as I can muster up (enter the inauthentic feeling). I never know if someone wants to know or if it is just questions to be polite. I never feel quite sure how much information to give...all of Brayden's things sound so medical/technical that feels like most people could not understand and I cannot fit into a nice sound bite.
However, sometimes those small talk circumstances can turn into something great. Last week while loading Brayden and his wheelchair into the car, I met a women who has been in a wheelchair for over 25 years and she herself was a special-ed teacher. 20 minutes later and I felt encouraged.
Another time I met another mom, while bargain shopping, who was a mom to a special needs daughter. Just an instant connection.
Questions, never bother me. I just want to navigate the small talk better. And you never know, sometimes God places certain people in at the right time for a good talk.