Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Back On The Horse

Greetings Happy People,

For my next story, let me take you back to 2007. There was a girl named Doris. She was getting ready for a speech contest and wanted to do the best she can. To get ready for the next level of competition, she searched for different advice on how to make her speech better. What she got was more than what she bargained.

One person told her to move this way. Another told her to say it this way. A third person told her to stand here. A fourth person told her to say it that way. A fifth person wanted her to stand on her head and say "Wubba wubba wubba." And yes, a sixth person told her to turn around and do the hokey pokey. As I stood in the back looking all of this, I can tell that her mind was overfilled with way too many instructions for a 5-7 minute presentation.

When the time came, I was not surprised at all. Doris did a great job at the first part of her speech. She was knocking it out of the park and having the audience filled with laughter. Suddenly, she stopped. We were waiting for her to say the next line. Thirty seconds later, she was still silent. The audience was encouraging her. Her family was supporting her. Even I was saying, "Come on!! You can do it!!"

With a frozen look on her face, she said "I'm sorry, I forgot what I was going to say." And she ended her speech. Once that happened, the audience felt bad for her. I felt bad for her because I knew what she went through to prepare for this moment.

As we waited for the moment of silence, I heard her whisper to her husband "I can't do anything right." It was at that moment, I  stood up, pat her on the shoulder, and told her "It's okay. These things happen. Don't let it get to you." At the end of the contest, more people offered her support, encouragement, and well wishes.

Any person could understand if she did not compete again. These things do happen. I had not seen her for a few years. One day, I saw Doris at a Toastmaster meeting giving a speech. This was the first speech I saw her give since that contest. I went up to her and said "It was good to see you give speeches again." She replied, "Sooner or later, I got to get back on the horse." Hearing her say that cracked a smile on my face.

People can take so much advice. But it is you that have the choice on what you want to do. You can either take in a lot or a little. Just take enough that you can feel comfortable with and keep going. You never know how far it could take you. And when it comes to falling, just remember that it takes a stronger person to get up than to stay down.

Doris learned those lessons very well. Hopefully others can learn the same lessons too.

That is all I have for now. Take care and thank you for your time and attention.


Jesse I-I-I

"When life gets too serious, remember to just have fun."

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