Self-consciousness probably began aged 11. There are pictures of me in grotesque poses, squirming for the camera or playing the fool and contorting my face into the unrecognizable, From teens onward, the crippling sense of awareness turned me into a shrinking violet.
Public performance was not a problem when I was playing the part of someone else. School plays were a welcome outlet and I positively soared as a robin with nylon wings, the knave of hearts had them rolling in the aisles and as Shylock I’m sure that I put Portia’s nose out of joint, But eventually real life takes over and there’s the rub. I was excruciatingly shy and publicly phobic and it has taken the drip by drip over the many years, for the fears to wear down into a confident indifference
Every so often though the anxiety haunts me and I open a door, only to find myself on a theatre stage. The packed audience is behind the footlights, the play is in full swing and I know that before long it will be the cue for my lines. In those frozen moments, I rack my brain, trying to figure what the play is about and what I am supposed to say. Wakefulness is the only escape and personally I’d sooner have the standing naked in public dream than fluff my lines.
Written for the Daily Prompt: Naked with Black Socks: Are you comfortable in front of people, or does the idea of public speaking make you want to hide in the bathroom? Why?