I spoke at TEDx Greenville on March 22. I am a through and through introvert. TEDx? I only have Ideas Worth Keeping to Myself.
to large groups...isn't really my jam. I like workshops. A classroom
setting. A table discussion or meeting where everyone is sitting.
with bright lights in my eyes. Unable to see how the audience is
reacting. It freaks me out. Though I think I am getting better. I have
to thank the amazing Deb Sofield
and my husband Chris
in all, I'm pleased with my TEDx Experience. I got through it...and I
got the chance to talk about something that concerns me deeply.
“I know it’s going to sound like an excuse,” he said. “But I’ve been
reading a lot about Lyme disease lately…and there’s this thing. A…a
symptom of the disease…called Lyme Rage.”
I rolled my eyes.
“You’re right. It does sound like an excuse,” I said.
He cleared his throat and tried again.
“No, but people really do…they really do get it. Lyme Rage, I mean. And they just have no…it’s inexplicable.”
His eyes were pleading. He had a hand on my shoulder. He wanted to be let off the hook.
“There’s regular old rage, too,” I said. “You don’t have to be sick to be angry.”
His head dropped and his hands dropped into his lap.
“I know. I know it,” he said. But then he looked up and brightened.
“But you should know I fixed it. I fixed it all…every bit of it. It’s
all…even better than before. You’ll never believe!”
And this was the car that I drove back and forth from Miami of Ohio my second year in grad school.
Whenever I drove home, I remembered to have my car spotless. This was
hard for me because I lived out of my car — and it was the one place I
allowed myself to be messy. But my dad. My dad worried that something
deeper was wrong if my car wasn’t in order. To him, a messy car was not a
sign of busy-ness or the calling card of someone on the move. To him, a
messy car meant a messy mind and a messy mind meant that I was most
likely depressed, or anxious, or in over my head. So I always cleaned it
up before I went home.
Except one time I forgot. It was my first time home since we found out about the Lyme disease
and it was the beginning of the semester and my car was littered with
stacks of papers and syllabi and books…and makeup and workout clothes
and maybe even the odd pair of shoes.