Monday, November 17, 2008


Yes, it's official I'm still a huge chicken. My hilarious friend Trish uberkindly described the experience I'm referring to here.  
I thought for sure by this time in life I would be just a touch more brave about getting up in front of a crowd, but apparently I'm still just as insecure as ever.  The strange thing about it is that I like singing, and I like performing on stage as well-but not as myself.  Without some sort of disguise or costume, my body betrays me and tries to go into shut down mode at the mere thought of being seen!  The liquid once kept in my mouth instantly moves to my armpits, forcing my lips to move dramatically around my teeth like a horse with peanut butter. The blood that when in my head helps me remember lyrics and practiced cues, just as suddenly migrates to my extremities, leaving my head vacuously circling while my legs get ready to run or buckle beneath me.

It's the familiar scene of the classic performance anxiety from which I suffer.  But, the real problem is that this anxiety is not restricted to the stage.  I can get performance anxiety just knowing I have a really busy day or week ahead of me.   I don't have that little buck -up gene that huddles together with the others and says "Look gang, I've got just the go juice this project needs!  Sit back and enjoy the gun show while I fire this baby up!"  And then of course, he would make engine revving sounds with his tiny little plasma mouth and kick me into high gear. 

Nope, I don't have one of those.  Or maybe I'm just missing one because genes prefer to work in pairs and my little tough guy gene is missing his Harley counterpart.  

In any case............. CURSE YOU JR. HIGH!! 

(I don't know if this is the real culprit or not but I like to yell that sometimes when I'm feeling particularly scarred about something.  It's nice to have a scapegoat at the ready- after all.) 

I just wish I could figure out how to get past this self induced handicap.  I mean, come on!  Can't I just learn to tap into Big Shan when I need her instead of having her pop up whenever the diva so chooses?  If only.  You can't control a diva's schedule you know.  Don't waste your time trying.  

She's busy accosting young mothers and imposing her baby holding services on them. Or, she might even surface upon meeting a new church member at the store and on each and every aisle, quiz the woman wildly about her family life, while in turn sharing equally about her own.  OY VEY!  At one point in the middle of my chattiness on that particular day, I recall even telling this nice victim lady how shy I was.  Then, because B.Shan is always on her toes, I realized suddenly how absurd that must have seemed to my new friend, so we shared a little laugh over that one. (titter titter titter)

Oh well.  We all have our own hang ups don't we?  Why do mine seem to be more like hang outs?  Some day it would really be nice to board the bus to sanity and actually not get off until I get there.  Until then, I suppose it's back to my Relacore study and being an inappropriate freakazoid when I least expect it. Such is life-cluck, cluck- such is life.  


Jenna Jean said...

What a fun post, I loved how you described your stage fright in the first paragraph! I bet you did great and I wish I could have been there to see and hear you. I would have been cheering for you! Big Shan, Little Shan, any kind of Shan Shan is wonderfully made!

Anonymous said...

I too love holding babies. I always enjoy meeting you in Wal-mart. Sorry I missed the singing. Your blog is so much fun to read.

Scout said...

Wow, that's great. Even though you can't always coax out Big Shan, isn't it nice to know she can rise to the occasion?

dean r said...

I noticed I'm not one of the blogs you follow, but i'ts cool, i know we're so tight you check it regularly without needing some blog to follow reminder right? ha anyway, hope to see on a stage SOON my friend. later

AfricaBleu said...

I love all the Shans, too. Especially the shy one . . . (snort).

You were GREAT up there. A natural. Born to sing alone--"I made a hat of dried sunflowers . . ."

I am happy today--you'd better mark that on the ol' Relacore study sheet.

dive said...

Yay for you for being the star, Shan!
Perhaps now Big Shan can come out to play a bit more often.

Shan said...

Oh Jenna, I know you would have cheered for me if you'd been there. Believe me I had much more fun describing how I felt up there than actually experiencing it. Where's a nice Diego mascot head when you need one anyway? harhar

I like seeing you in Wal-Mart too Charlie, even if I'm usually totally spaced out from the fluorescent lighting and product stimuli! Wal-Mart should have a coffee shop in it for us to catch up in :).

She didn't rise to the occasion Robyn that's the problem. Big Shan is so thoughtless and self centered to leave little ole me out there alone! I did think of how you had to whip out your lead horn boldness in orchestra that time!

Dean, That blogs I follow thing is deceiving. Those only show up there from blogs you volunteer to follow on their sites. I follow you and my other pals on my reader. And of course I don't need a reminder to visit you! xo

I AM SHY BLEU!! When are you ever going to believe me?! :D I just read your comment at Trishie's blog and my heart swelled! I wish I had seen you out past the blaring interrogation lights. I would have surely quivered a lip in your direction. Baha. I can just hear Casey's voice agreeing with you in that blase' "Yes, dear. ALL your friends are pretty." way. teehee I have noted "happy" on my graph for you today.

Hey there Dive! That HAS been my plan for Big Shan all along but she is always too busy flitting around on the internet to be useful to me in real life emergencies. As you know, B. Shan can be obnoxious and frightening at times though, so maybe it's just as well. :D

MmeBenaut said...

Oh I so wish I could have been there to hear and see you sing! Trish did the worrying for you Shan so in future you can simply hand that part of your p.a. to her and get on with the job.

Performance anxiety is horrible. I know because I too suffer from it; hence the reason I just wrote the speeches instead of delivered them. Interestingly enough, the only time I didn't feel it was at my father's funeral, when I gave the eulogy. I had spent days writing it and knew it thoroughly. I think it helped that I had a captive and sympathetic audience too.

You are such an incredible human being Shan. You're stunningly beautiful, warm, funny, a brilliant writer, a competent and loving mother and wife, a faithful servant to God and so much more. Your "get up and go juices" flow more tenaciously than most people that I've come across. One day in the not too distant future, I'm coming to America to visit with you and to listen to you sing in church so you'd better start practising!

savannah said...

i can't even try to sing, so you're my hero already, sugar, just for getting on stage! xoxoxo

Tally said...

Well, I just found out my blogfeeder failed me. I literally have 41 blog entries to read!!! Plus my blogfeeder says Sara wrote 45??? Oh my!!

Anyway, you did AWESOME up there!! And I nearly teared up over M. Benaut's kind words. B-kee! And they are all true!!!! XOXO

Shan said...

Mme B I'm speechless! heehee You are the sweetest! I don't deserve such words but I certainly appreciate them. Thank you for building me up so. I float upon words of encouragement and some days barely get by without kind friends like you. :)

Hi Savannah! The trouble with my singing is, it is so touch and go! Some days I'm happy to be heard. Other days I sound like Peter Brady when his voice is changing.

Trisha my blog feeder did that to me the other day too. Technology is lovable until it makes a fool of you! Mme B. is one of my greatest friendship achievements in my year of intelligence! teehee