Psyching myself out of my nerves before speaking on a panel in D.C.
So I’ve been in training for the A1c Champions Program. It’s really a wonderful program which happens to be sponsored by Sanofi US.
I have had to confront my fear of public speaking head on. It has not been easy. It has not been without pain. But, I’m not quitting and that fact alone makes me feel really fulfilled. You see, my social anxiety issues go back to my preschool and kindergarten age. When I was 5 in kindergarten, I remember wanting so badly to tell my nice teacher that I thought she was great and that I appreciated her (she was sensitive and understanding of my ways unlike many teachers to follow). Alas, I could do no such thing.
A few years later I fell in love with gymnastics. I really felt like it was something I could be good at. And I’m petite and small boned and I get really muscular, I would have been able to do well, I think. But they announced we’d have to do a routine in front of all the parents and I remember crying outside the door to the place, while my dad (or mom?) tried to convince me to not be afraid, to just go on and do it. I did not go in. I quit forever. I did as much as I could at home for years, even putting on dance/gymnastic shows for my parents just for the joy of it but I always regretted quitting.
Just after that I took piano lessons, which I really enjoyed. My instructor said I was a natural. I did two recitals that I thought would stop my heart and then, knowing there would be more to come, I decided to quit. I told my parents I was just choosing soccer over piano. The truth was that on a soccer team there were a lot of us to watch versus having all the focus be on me.
There have been many more examples like this in my life. In fact every time I had to present something in class I usually delayed the grief by claiming high or low blood sugar to which the teacher would say, “Oh sweetie, ok, why don’t you present tomorrow?” “Ugh. Tomorrow.” I couldn’t win.
So learning to give an hour long program where I’m doing almost all the talking is really challenging for me. I have a flight/fight instinct kicking in. I’m fighting the urge to come up with some pathetic excuse as to why I can’t continue. But you know what? I’m not going to quit. For all those out there with diabetes, for all the times I let my own self down, I’m going to do this.
Are you doing something that scares you? Share in comments. If not, find something to do that scares you! ;)