Stop staring at me! Stop bloody staring at me! Not a great thing to shout during a pitch, but today, I did just that. I was pitching an idea to my big boss, in front of a group of my smaller bosses and those who feel they are my bosses simply because they're older and more bitter than I am. It was an idea I knew well, an idea I actually believed in, an idea I should've had no trouble pitching...and all I did was shout at this group of entirely innocent intimidators to stop fucking staring at me. Inside my head. Yes, luckily the actual words never actually left my mouth , but I think that via my tightened jaw, suddenly thin lips, monotonous voice, disjointed, seemingly unrelated, irrelevant words and madly glaring yet constantly shifting eyes, my message was pretty clear. I am a mad woman, please stop staring at me... Or I will cry or puke or punch you or suddenly take my clothes off or worse.
Once again, I fucked myself over. I shot myself in the foot. I got well and truly in my own way. I felt the fear and crapped myself anyway. I was my worst enemy. I did all the things all those self-help books proclaim you shouldn't.
Why? Why, oh why, oh whyyyy? What is it about having to speak in front of a group of people that reduces me to simpering jelly? I really thought I would've grown out of this by now. I'm sick to death of my lack of confidence and insecurity. I'm well and truly bored of it. So many people talk of a mind-altering change in perspective when you become a mum - you don't sweat the small stuff; You realise what the important things in life are; You care so much about your little one that you don't care so much about all those big ones around you. You have a very different focus, a different set of priorities. How nice. But my life-changing alteration in perspective seems to have been delayed. I suspect it's picking its nose in a changing room somewhere whilst trying to figure out how to escape from a predictably too tight dress without dislocating both its arms or calling a smirking teenage shop assistant for help. It's taking its bloody time. Anytime now would be nice...or at least before my son learns from my mistakes in a very literal sense.
I think I'm even more cheesed off because I had actually naively hoped that having a child WOULD help me to stop angsting over every single titchy thing. Surely something like producing another human would be life-altering in every possible way. Surely such a massive explosion would shake the foundations of any insecure anxieties trying to take root inside my brain. Nope. And there's nothing like a group of staring people to inspire Anxiety to start shouting even louder than usual 'THEY KNOW'.
Thank god it's a bank holiday. I can postpone facing my bosses for an extra day. ..but I can't postpone worrying about how to stop myself worrying. I'm somehow going to have to find the time to do some 'work' on myself, even though working out how to help a new human being become a balanced individual is more than a full time job. I have no idea where to start. Years of therapy haven't seemed to have done it...what the hell else will? I'm open to brand new ideas. Pitches will be gratefully received. I promise not to stare.