Hello, internet people! This week brings us our first edition of Adventures in Self-Care.
As part of my mutual goals to exercise better self-care and put myself in more social situations to make new friends, I signed up to attend my first Geek Girl Brunch event: a wellness workshop at a little shop called Well Oiled.
Geek Girl Brunch is an organization with a number of local chapters. I’ll let them speak for themselves, since I’ve only attended the one event so far. According to the national website, Geek Girl Brunch “is a meetup group of ladies who geek out together, typically when mimosas are involved.” Their mission statement is “to create a safe environment where identifying geek girls can be themselves to give voice, network, create friendships, inspire each other and hang out!”
I’ve been a member of the Pittsburgh chapter’s Facebook group for a while, but this is the first time that my interest in the monthly topic and my schedule lined up. I entered the raffle to attend the workshop, and won a spot!
The event involved making two bath bombs and a body scrub, all with essential oils mixed in. I’ve long been interested in learning to make my own bath bombs (in spite of my current non-bathtub living situation), so I jumped at the chance to combine learning something new with meeting some new, geeky friends.
When the day arrived, I was equal parts exited and anxious. It had snowed quite a bit the day before, so I was nervous to drive somewhere new with questionable road conditions. Furthermore, I was going in solo–this would be a group of strangers I’d have to interact with. Luckily, having a set activity really helps with my own personal brand of social anxiety, so I wasn’t nearly as nervous as I would be at, say, a straightforward brunch event.
I rolled up safely, having only slid a little bit during what turned out to be a fairly straightforward drive, and found the adorable little Well Oiled shop. Rehearsing what I would say, I pulled open the door… and was immediately calmed by the smiling shop owner and lack of formality.
I didn’t have to use my rehearsed speech about how I was there for a wellness event with Geek Girl Brunch or give my name for a list… I just walked back, sat down, and immediately realized the people nearest to me were talking about the one and only Potterhead Running Club (formerly Hogwarts Running Club). In fact, I soon realized I’d actually met the woman on my left before, at a PHRC meetup to see the filmed version of Puffs! Talk about social success!
We had a nice time picking out oils to create our sugar scrubs and then the more complicated (and, in my opinion, more rewarding) bath bombs. There were plenty of fun add-ins, like flower petals and glitter powder, and slamming the molds together to compress the ingredients into the bath bomb form was incredibly satisfying. In fact, our bath bomb guru complimented my creations, saying they were “very good.” All in all, a truly successful experience.
I came away feeling excited for the next event with GGB, and excited to borrow my boyfriend’s bathtub to use my new Hufflepuff yellow and turquoise bath bombs. Trying to make friends is always a process, something I really struggled with when I was younger. I’m learning to embrace the process and celebrate the small steps without putting too much pressure on myself.