Over the past month's hiatus, I've lost the 11 readers I had. Yet I've decided to come back.
I was asked to be a guest on a radio show.
I know, exciting, right?
The discussion topic would have to do with "arts funding," particularly government funding, and I know a little something about that but not enough to be considered an expert by any means.
When approached, I said yes.
I was kind of talked into it at what I considered the last minute and I wanted to help out. And, lately I'd been thinking about getting back out in the community, coming out of my coccoon, but I wasn't sure if I was ready yet.
I said I would need a script so I could prepare answers beforehand. The challege then would be to make the script sound like a live and lively conversation on this NPR station broadcasting local programming during drive time. Eeek. I'd never done live radio.
Even a year ago, I would have jumped eagerly at the chance to promote something, and myself. A few years ago I did some pre-recorded radio stuff when I was manic and excited about projects but nothing since.
Over the past year, I've just been so anxious, and full of self-doubt. Feeling not ready no matter how prepared. Not able to remember stuff I know that I know. I was so scared of stuttering or slurring as I'd been doing lately, from the meds. So scared of being asked a question and responding with dead air while I tried to put thoughts together.
As it turned out, I didn't slur or stutter. I spoke slowly. I read from my script with some expression. Some of the questions, I know I didn't answer well, but I was getting through it.
Then, the host went off-script.
She asked me a question and halfway through her talking, I knew I didn't want to answer her. I knew I wanted to get out of that studio as fast as I could. I looked at her with big eyes and shook my head vigorously "NO!" She saved the moment and answered her own question. AWKward.
We were faced with needing to fill up the time in the half-hour program, so she freestyled some more with conversational banter and I attempted to answer questions but really felt like a buffoon.
I love radio, and I'm bummed that I kind of screwed up.
Still, I didn't cry afterwards like I would have a few months ago. I wasn't entirely shaky and jittery. Just a little.
I leaned on the friends and family support system beforehand and they all encouraged and said things to make me feel more confident. That really helped.
This was about more than a radio program that I hoped no one would listen to. This was about getting involved, opening up, stretching and talking and getting out of my comfort zone.
I've decided I'm not quite ready to get back out there yet. I think it was good to test the waters though.