I’m usually an even-keeled person. Some have called me aloof. Sometimes it seems like I don’t care about things. I like to think I’m just thoughtful; that I find myself contemplating more than reacting. I try not to react to things I can’t control by getting upset, instead I look for solutions. It’s an outlook that has gotten me through life with little confrontation or turmoil.
But there’s another side. One I have no control over. When it comes to anticipation all bets are off.
Since I was little, I’ve had a problem with controlling my anticipation. It started with Christmas and Birthdays. I would get so excited and worked-up I wouldn’t be able to sleep and often made myself physically ill.
I almost missed my own birthday party at Chuck E. Cheese’s because I vomited out of anticipation, at the restaurant. Christmas had to be held on Christmas Eve or I wouldn’t sleep. I think that one was more out of my parents’ desire to sleep than anything else.
Trips, sporting events, movie premieres, not as intense, but the anticipation leaves a feeling in the pit of my stomach.
Now, I find myself twisted in anxiety as the dream I’ve been working toward for more than a decade is realized…tomorrow.
When I picked the date several months ago to release Shady Place it was to allow time for proofs, a cover, editing, and a hint of vanity being a few days after my 35th birthday.
I’ve literally been in knots inside since I picked the day. This time it’s two-fold. First, the date itself has just been sitting there on the calendar taking its time meandering toward me while my insides eat themselves. It seemed forever away, I could have pulled it forward at anytime and eased the suffering, but it wasn’t time. No, I’d have to wait and agonize over the pending release of my greatest personal accomplishment.
But that wasn’t the hardest part…
The date has loomed, hovering over my head, not so much like a dark cloud, but a mocking thought bubble.
“You’re a fraud.”
“March 28, 2017 the world finds out just how terrible you really are.”
“They’re going to hate it…and you.”
And on and on and on. I believe this to be the plight of many creatives, but it’s truly torture. We put our hearts and souls into our work and then release it to the world. Like sending your child to the first day of school, it doesn’t matter how much you prepared them, once they step foot on that bus and disappear over the horizon they’re on their own, but they’re a reflection of you.
That’s where I am now. Tomorrow my baby hits the world and I’m helpless…
…but not hopeless.
I enjoy it. I enjoyed writing it. Hopefully a few people out there will enjoy it, too.
If not, I’ll write something else, pat it on the butt, and send it out into the world, too, beginning the same torturous cycle of losing my mind and shredding my insides in anticipation.
That’s why the make antacids right?
Thank you again to everyone who has made Shady Place possible.
Tomorrow it’s out of my hands and hopefully out of my stomach!