I sat there, at one spot on a table that stretched long, parked adjacent to other tables, wrapping us into a square donut of seats.
Faces blinked back at me from across the room on the other side. It was so quiet, you could hear a pin drop.
I was at an artists meeting that night.
And I was the keynote speaker.
I walked into this room with two legs, I began. But, if you could really look deep inside me tonight…
I took a big, shaky breath.
You would see that the legs to my soul… are broken.
My lips start to tremble and my hands start to cool and shake, even though it is a warm summer eve.
I gulp and continue.
The reason is — because you see — I’ve spent a lot of the hours of my days this past year in my bed. In my home.
Not because I don’t love to be with people.
But, because of panic attacks.
They were triggered by memories that have come alive — doing something I’ve always loved.
Something I’ve always dreamed of doing.
Places Still Tender
This is how I introduced myself to a group of painters, designers, illustrators, poets, musicians… writers.
It sure didn’t sound inspiring to me at all.
At one point, I even had to stop and collect myself.
I was overwhelmed by the surreal experience of recounting my story out in the open.
Even as I shared my story, I questioned whether there was any value in exposing pain that has been endured so privately.
I felt for sure I was making everyone feel uncomfortable and awkward.
Until I saw one woman’s eyes start to tear. Then, another man’s head dip, in a knowing nod…
To be continued…
…To read the rest of the story “The Artistic You: Finding Your Heart’s Way Back” – click here to join me over at DaySpring’s (in)courage site, where today’s post is published.
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Photo credit: aidenmorgan via Flickr.