Have you ever found yourself in a situation where you mumbled to yourself, “Me and my big mouth!” I know I have more often than I really care to admit. One time was when a couple of friends and I were printing our first book. It was a devotional and as it was coming together, we couldn’t help but hold it and flip the pages. It had been a lot of work and it was so cool to see it come to fruition.
The other two ladies I worked with had done some speaking before and up until this point I had not. We had high hopes that we would be invited to speak at retreats and conferences and sell hundreds, if not thousands of books – at least that was what was going on in my mind.
I told them, “When you guys are scheduled for your events, I’ll just sit at the book table and collect money. That way you can be free to talk to your fans.”
This is the part where I later said, “Me and my big mouth!”
I believe God heard me when I said that, and I’ve been told He has a sense of humor. One week after printing our devotional, I get a phone call, “Have you ever done any speaking?”
I was thinking two things at exactly the same time: “How exciting! My first speaking engagement!” and, “Oh, foo! What did I get myself into?” I’m not quite sure what I was thinking when I agreed, but agree I did. I figured I stood in front of people enough at my day job and had embarrassed myself enough times in public throughout my life time – how bad could it be?
Coming up with the topic was easy. Preparing my speech was easy. Even showing up was easy. The problem: my voice. I had lost my voice. I was not sick, but I was doing a lot of coughing. I chalked it up to Satan trying to make me back out, but I was stubborn. I was not backing out. I did very little talking at home the week prior to the event, which I’m sure everyone appreciated.
On my way to the event, I stopped to get some cough medicine to help get me through the speech. Yeah, I wish I could say it worked and in a way it did, I didn’t cough. However, I did not count on the medicine throwing me for a loop.
I took a dose right before we ate lunch so it wouldn’t be on an empty stomach, like any obedient patient would do. By the time lunch was over, the room was spinning. My knees were shaking even though I was sitting down. You see, normally I only take half a dose of medicine. This time, when I took it I was busy talking and not paying attention to what I was doing. Big mistake!
I leaned over to my friend who had come to lend moral support, “If you see me falling, you’re going to catch me, right?” She assured me she would, but she was also smirking at my predicament, so I wasn’t sure I could truly depend on her.
When I stood up to speak, the room spun faster. This was not good. The whole time I was speaking, I was gripping the podium and I was sure I was slurring my words. At least my mind was alert enough to be praying really hard, “Lord, help me get through this!”
In the end, it didn’t turn out too bad. I didn’t fall over. I didn’t appear to be drunk to the attendees. I was even told that I looked like I had been doing it for years, of course, that was a relative and she had to say something nice, and after all, this had been her big idea in the first place!
Since then, I have learned that whenever I speak, I do not take any medication of any kind beforehand. So, if I ever speak at en event that you are attending, I may be sick, but at least my mind won’t be cloudy and I will be coherent!
The next entry will be one in a continuing series of conversations with my kids. I promise, you will laugh, if not at me, you will at yourself!