I gave a presentation today at the RICA Peer Liaison meeting. I’d known about it for awhile but chose not to prepare anything. I tend to do better when I’m under pressure and haven’t prepared much. It’s an odd phenomenon but it seems to work well for me. So I printed out a report to use as a template as I ran out the door late. My mom thought it was somewhere else so we were more late but I managed not to get super mad at her (in words) and the presentation was awesome. AWESOME. When I got back to my seat I was flying high. I sent a text to a few friends that said, “AHHHH! I’M AWESOME!!! Lol. What a rush!” Then it hit me. I forgot something. It wasn’t Earth-shaking at first. Just a realization. Then I started to feel angry. REALLY angry. It was like the feeling was taking over me. I couldn’t stop it. So I decided to write. What else is there to do in the middle of a meeting? The thought process was this:
AHHHHHHH!!!! I feel excitedly ANGRY! AH! (Breathe…)
Urges: Kick the wall. Scream. Hit something. Run. Cry.
Body: Face tingling. Teeth on my tongue bothering me. Feel cold. Yawning. Eyes water. Hair in my eyes bothering me. Shoulders moving. Feet feel claustrophobic in shoes. Shallow quick breathing.
Thoughts: I am awesome! I’ve failed.
Trigger: Realized I forgot the “we don’t take holidays” clause. Mom remembered but didn’t tell me.
Coping options: Take Xanax. Breathe. Write. Go outside. Accept.
Action options: Say something. Say nothing. Tell Karin later.
My mind was racing. What was I to do? If I said something it might be inappropriate. I’d never been to one of these meetings. If I said nothing, I would kick myself from now until eternity. Telling Karin later would just be a copout. There was a pause and I spoke up. My anxiety was SO high. But it worked! It was appropriately timed and led to 2 other comments people had forgotten. Yes! Success! I circled “Say something” under action options and breathed a big sigh of relief.
I’m proud of myself. My Cog and DBT and assertiveness training and guts combined today to help me achieve a great thing. And I’m honored to share the process. :)
© Michelle Routhieaux 2010