Anxiety, my nasty little friend
Deep, deep breath with me.....
I’m going to be honest. I’m really freaking nervous. Today, right now as I’m writing this, it is 12:04 am and my album is officially released. The album is EVERYWHERE. All the possible places to put it I could think of and feasibly make work.
I think I’m going to throw up.
There was a man I ran into recently who implied that my journey to music had been an easy one and I had yet to face any “real” challenges. I wanted to laugh in his smug, condescending face. In fact, I’m about 99% certain that I did laugh in his face. That didn’t seem to phase him though. Maybe my laugh sounds too much like a delightful chuckle. I’ve got to work on my sarcastic laugh and cold death stare.
So, yes, there were some challenges and, for my sanity, I'm going to share a few:
1) The extreme nervousness and performance anxiety that make my hands shake and my throat tighten and ever single muscle unnecessarily tense (gee thanks physiology for making it so freakin’ obvious….).
2) Relationships dissolving at the impasse of trying to assert that, yes, this is a direction I’m going to go no matter how silly it seems. And you should support me in it. Because I have a VISION. (This, probably, would have been significantly more persuasive had I not said it with all the conviction and self-confidence of an 16 year old girl trying desperately to seem cool in her pink corduroy pants in front of the boy who broke up with her two weeks ago who she just heard was making out with that other super-cool-and-put-together -seeming senior chick).
3) One 8 month the-magic-has-been-sucked-out-of-my-world depression period of getting over the anxiety and, frankly, humiliation of starting something so foolhardy and non-lucrative on the cusp of my 30s that I was not even good at yet (which would have been not so bad had I not just did the SAME GODDAMN THING with acting a few years back after leaving a more practical life with at least the potential of everyday respect and a decent income).
So, no, this journey, while for me was 140% worth it, didn’t come quite that easy. And I’m sure that if I were to talk to each of you, you wouldn’t say that your journey was easy either….if you were to sit down and allow yourself to admit that there are those little barbs that stick into your heart over time and that when someone presses too hard, it hurts all over again. Don’t get me wrong, I think it’s important to acknowledge and further to help when we can those who struggle more than us, but I think it’s also necessary to allow ourselves to feel and recognize the pain of growth. The trick, I think, is to keep going anyway, even if it feels like we are taking such a small step each time. To trust in your own voice. That you have a voice that's worth hearing. That’s cheesy. I’m cheesy, on occasion.
Somehow, I’m not quite sure how, I got this album done and out into the world. And, not to be cocky, but I am DAMN PROUD of it. I actually really love it, and I've been so, so fortunate to get some wonderful, heartfelt responses from folks who it resonated with as well. I even got a postcard in the mail from someone! That made my day.
I think this happened, in no small part, to people like you, that helped me past those harder moments, and still do. Saying my journey had struggle not only gives merit to me and what I’ve accomplished, but to the people who helped me over the hurdles when I was too weak to jump myself. Thank you for that. If I’m able, I’ll help you jump too.