Tomorrow night is my 2nd speaking engagement. Sharing my experience, strength, and hope with a bunch of fellow misfits by telling them how it was, what happened and what I'm like now.
I don't usually get nervous about things like this. When I was a kid, I was used to preforming in piano recitals and church plays. When I got older, there were school plays and choral groups and solos and such. Again, no nerves. When I was old enough, I earned a living singing in the bars. My best friend at the time owned a karaoke business and I worked with her and I filled in for a couple of bands when they needed a lead singer. I loved it. I was never nervous on stage. I knew I could sing, I seemed to be able to hold the audience's attention and be entertaining, and I didn't feel I had anything to prove to anyone.
I get nervous when I have to go new places. Will I get there on time? Will the map be sufficient? Why do I listen to my GPS? What if I go to the wrong place and look like an idiot? What if I ask a question and I sound stupid? What if the person behind the desk can't conceal their dislike and I want to crawl out of my skin? What if someone's internal dialogue switch is broken and all the horrible things I'm pretty sure they're thinking about me come spilling out? What if they figure out that my humor and air of confidence is really a ruse to hide the truth? That's how the mind of this alcoholic works. I think I can read people's minds...and they're never thinking anything good about me. In reality, I know that I'm not THAT interesting that people are wasting their time thinking about ME. Besides, I'm not who THEY think I am, and I'm not who I think I am. Therefore, we can all spend a lot less time thinking about me. That will be easier for them THAN me, but we'll all reach the same point eventually, and it won't be about me.
I guess I don't have much of a point other than the fact that while I have more than enough experience to go around, and the strength meter is above 50%, the hope is lacking. It's not that I feel hopeLESS right now, I just don't feel hopeFUL. Perhaps if you're reading this, and you have some extra hope laying around, you could send it my way before 6 pm tomorrow night.