Too Shy, Shy; Hush, Hush…

February 6, 2009

I am in Nashville, for Blissdom. Nashville seems nice so far, if the airport and hotel are anything to go by. I’ve been here for about fourteen hours. I’ve slept about 45 minutes of that time.

I don’t say that to solicit sympathy. I knew that I wouldn’t sleep on this trip. Me, the baby, no husband to run interference, no Ativan to get me through the rough spots. I knew what I was in for.

But what I hadn’t given any thought to was this: I need to be a fully functioning, coherent grown-up today. And I need to not succumb to social anxiety and that whole awkwardness in groups thing and the like because? In a barely functioning, sleep-deprived state, that shit will bring me down. (You didn’t know? I am painfully shy in social situations. I am very, very good at covering it up. VERY good. Years of speaking at conferences and lecturing in a university have given me mad people skillz. But if you see me in a group and I seem to be bursting with confidence and moxy? I am, on the side, fraying the sleeve-ends of my shirt with nervous fingers, anxious as a thirteen year old at her first dance. Seriously.)

So here I am, all set to meet a couple of hundred new people, and speak to them coherently about writing or whatever, and I can barely form a sentence or put one foot in front of the other.

This bodes well.

All of which is to say, if you’re not in Nashville, send me your best survival wishes. And if you are here, in Nashville, at Blissdom? Go easy on me.

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