Local Magic Love: Facing Fear is Scary
(Guest View by Patty Shaw, Coventry Creations and Candle Wick Shoppe, Sept. 15, 2015)
I guess that’s a no brainer, but still, when you face a fear you don’t really know till it’s all said and done if it was a good idea. There is something magical about facing a fear. You get pushed into this surreal space and, once put in motion, you can’t stop it. Strangely, you don’t really try to stop it even though every cell in your brain is screaming STOP!
It’s kind of like living in slow motion. Every second is both exaggerated and displaced at the same time. All the senses are heightened, ready for something explosive to happen, just like a fight or flight response. Forget about planting your feet firmly on the ground ‘cause you’ve already gone astral. So don’t fight it, fly through it.
This is how I felt when I walked up to the microphone to sing my song at the Torch This benefit. Heatherleigh had finished her song and I said to myself – oh crap, how am I supposed to follow that? I was already pegging myself as the gal they were politely humoring so when Heatherleigh rocked it out I shrank a bit. As Jenny wrapped up my introduction did what I imagine most people do in my situation, I clicked into auto pilot. I pasted on the big smile and said thank you, thank you, nod and thank you again. Internally by brain sent the message, “snap out of it, you can’t stand up there saying thank you Patty, you gotta sing the damn song.” So my head turned and nodded to James my piano man and we began our number.
“Pack up all my cares and woe, here I go…..ohhhh, right off my high heel”… no wait that’s not the words…”Singing low, bye bye black bird.” Wow I just fell of my shoe and worked it into the song. We’re going to be ok. I heard some giggles from the front row and I relaxed. “No one here can love or understand me… oh what hard luck stories they all hand me…” James adjusted the accompaniment flawlessly and I finished that ditty with heart. It was a simple, sweet song, not super challenging, but to me, it was the Requiem. I owned that little song and when my 2 minutes in the spot light was over I was victorious.
It was then that I affirmed that facing a fear is scary, but soooo totally worth it. It didn’t even matter if I sang well, though that would have made me very happy. The victorious part was in showing up, really doing my best and loving the moment, the audience, my piano man and myself. On stage, I felt I had accomplished all. Ya, my knees were knocking, I fell off my stiletto, and I mumbled a silly comment when I should have been singing but, all of that became part of the whole magical moment and I fell in love with it.
I have not been the same since that day. I say day because it was not simply the act of singing the song. It was the support I got from the 13 other singers, the hair, make-up the oooo’s and ahhhh’s and coaching and it all came together when I opened my mouth and let my voice free. That healed a lifetime, maybe even life times of self doubt and so much of all the ugliness that comes with that difficult mindset. The Torch This team was my village and they raised me up and I will forever be grateful to them.
My fear of performing a song on stage before an audience was my herculean event and not something I came too easily or swiftly. At 52 years old I was still a scared little girl inside when I said I wanted to Torch This, but I knew I had to do. It was my personal trial by fire that would set me free. I guess I really did torch this with a vengeance because my scared little girl is no more. She’s all dolled up still standing on stage at Cliff Bells, singing her heart out just for the pleasure of it. You go girl!
I tell my story so you can use it as a jumping off place for facing your own fear. If you are afraid of putting yourself out there, remember, all the therapy in the world is not going to put you on your stage. You have to decide to get up off the couch and do something. Move, take action, actually do the thing that proves to you that taking a risk is what changes you, it’s what heals you.
Follow your intuition and when the opportunity arises that speaks of personal freedom, take a chance, do the work and show us.
Patty Shaw is an owner of Coventry Creations and Candle Wick Shoppe in Ferndale, Michigan. Her bio says “Candle maker, business woman, Author, Mom of two, Reiki Master, Teacher, Spiritual Councelor – I love the woo woo stuff. I’m from a big family and love to host parties for them. Love to decorate my home, though I can’t afford to redo it again. So I watch HGTV to get it out of my system.” Read more at www.coventrycreations.com. Note: Candle Wick Shoppe is a sponsor of the oc115. Check them out at 175 W. 9 Mile in Ferndale.
Local Magic Love: Facing Fear is Scary