Friday, July 1, 2016

The worrying and the almost barfing and the talking

I have anxiety issues.

I've had them for as long as I can remember. From the time I was a wee babe, I worried about everything. All the time. I agonized over everything I said, over analyzed the things that I was thinking about. I met every new experience with dread because there were at least 832 things that could go wrong.

The funniest shit about that previous paragraph is the fact that I wrote it using the past tense. FICTION CAN BE FUN. Let's just be honest here. Nothing about any of that is past tense. I do it now. I'll probably do it until the day I die.

What I'm saying is....

Embrace your issues, people. Seriously, whatever they are. Just take a long hard look in the mirror and make your peace with it because that shit ain't gonna change.

For me, anxiety looks a lot like imagining all the possible problems, then running them out in preparation in my head to their completion, regardless of how unlikely or awful that might be. I over prepare for everything.

For every.fucking.thing.

And I write lists almost constantly to help me cope with the over preparing.

Then I usually lose the lists by leaving them somewhere and forgetting where I put them because I have raging ADHD too.


For a long time, my mantra in life has always been to expect the worst but hope for the best.

It usually works out pretty well, if I'm being honest. It works because I'm always anticipating being disappointed. I assume things will get screwed up. That worst case scenario??? Already scoped it out ahead of time and came up with 14 different game plans to deal with it.

I got this.

Which is really fucked up if you think about it.

I mean, I guess it is helpful in some ways, but it's overwhelming in every other way and probably has led to me just not doing a lot of shit I should have done.

Like I can guarantee that you'd want me on your team if the zombie apocalypse ever actually happens, but if you ask me if I want to do some totally nonthreatening thing three weeks from now, I'm cooking up a bullshit excuse and hiding in my pajamas.

I have a lot of regrets for the chances I never took out of fear of what might happen.

Writing that one down sucks, can I just tell you?

I've been in a weird place...for over a decade. I'm not kidding.

When the PPD took control of my brain for the first time, it really messed me up. As if I didn't already have enough issues, I basically became a recluse by choice unless there was some compelling reason to leave the house. It was magnificently bad for a while.

I've sort of forgiven myself for it. Fine not really, but I'm working on it.

I know now, after that literal decade of being more fucked in the head that I was already, and after years of therapy and a few more issues piled on top, that I have to force myself to do things that scare the shit out of me. I have to.

If I don't force myself, I will be perfectly content to wallow in my disgustingly deep pond of issues. Here at home. Without pants.

Not that there's anything wrong with that.

We have wifi and snacks. It's not so bad.

I am a true introvert if ever there was one. Human interaction overwhelms me. It takes me days to work up to go to things I commit to going to, even when I truly like the people I'm going somewhere with. If it's something I really don't want to do or I'll be around people I don't particularly like, there will be DAYS OR WEEKS of psyching myself up to go, then I'll feign illness about 3 hours before I have to leave, then I'll actually start to get sick in some crazy ass psychosomatic way because that's a real thing that happens. I detest public speaking. I loathe meeting new people. I'm awkward as hell. I hate the sound of my voice.

Clearly this means I should be a quizmaster.

What the fuck was I thinking?


I applied to be a quizmaster for the noblest of reasons. Because I'd get paid a little, get a free bar tab, maybe meet some people who didn't laugh when I referenced Slytherin or Alderaan in conversation. OH AND IT WOULD FORCE ME TO GO OUTSIDE THE HOUSE AND TALK TO HUMANS. That was actually one of the main reasons I did it. For therapeutic reasons.

I sent off the application figuring I'd never hear back because I've been a writer long enough to have rejection become ingrained in my psyche. Seriously, you guys...if you can't handle rejection, never ever become a writer.

Then I got an email. And an audition date.

And the night of my audition, I was a ball of nerves as it was, so it only made sense that I should develop a raging migraine. I literally sat in the car and cried for 15 minutes after my audition because my head hurt so bad.

Figuring, again, that I'd totally fucked that up, I didn't expect to hear back.

THANKSBUTNOTHANKS is the default I expect.

Nope. They liked me. They really liked me.

I don't know why.

(people say I'm hilarious, but I'm still not convinced)

When I started doing training, I'd do this thing where I'd go to the location I was training at early on purpose so that I could sit in my car for half an hour and argue with myself about walking in. Full blown argument. Then I'd hide in the bathroom for a good 15 minutes.

I've been doing it for a while now, and I still totally want to vomit every night.

You know what, though?

I'm really fucking good at my job. 

I have forced myself to learn all the audio equipment backwards and forwards. I could hook that shit up in my sleep now. I fucked it up so badly the first night that I damn near had a panic attack. If I could have curled up in the fetal position, I would have....but dammit I figured it out. Then I took a picture.

Actual picture from my first night of hosting after fighting with
this fucking mixer for half an hour.

I won.
I have downloaded approximately 583 hours of music onto my computer so that when there's a Star Wars question, I can queue up some John Williams. (if you don't know who John Williams is, FFS go Google him)

I have started telling jokes and making fun of players.

I have become quite good at dealing with drunk obnoxious assholes. Then again, I've been writing online forever, and we all know the internet is full of obnoxious assholes.

I have developed great working relationships with the staff. Even after I completely screwed up the audio the first night, they begged me to come back.

And I can proudly say that I stand in front of a bar full of drunk people with a microphone every week.

I guess the moral of the story is do the shit that scares you because it might be exactly what you need.

Tip your waitstaff. Try not to blow yourself up this weekend.

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