Yesterday I woke up at 3:42 am and did not go back to sleep. 500 women were coming to a breakfast and I was the keynote speaker. Once I realized the day had come, I just got up and went about my planned morning….just a few hours earlier than planned.
I was prepared, ready and nervous. Nervous is ok – it keeps you on your A-Game.
Apparently my A-Game is also know as ‘Ridiculous’.
I was doing pretty good until it came time to put my make-up on. Now I’ve been a woman for 34 years, so I know to do this without the outfit on, lest you spill, drip, drop or sprinkle make-up on yourself.
It seemed reasonable that my freshly ironed indigo pants were ok to wear.
It turns out wearing the pants was risky, not reasonable.
I have the complexion of a polar bear, so my foundation is very stark. And after it jumps out of your hands and lands in your ceramic sink only to spin around in a fashion that a 1990’s tie-dyer would have been excited about do you realize how stark it is in a zebra pattern on your indigo pants.
So much panic ensued that I didn’t even take a picture. I dropped it with so much gusto that foundation even landed on the wall BEHIND me.
Breakfast dishes were quickly excavated out of the kitchen sink and frantic hand washing with dish detergent commenced. Indigo colored water covered the counter and floor, but there was no time for sopping up the water – I had to keep going and keep my cool.
Seven steps to de-foundation your indigo pants.
- Scrub in sink with industrial soap
- Rinse in cold water and pray
- Spin cycle of washing machine
- Dryer on hot and pray the pants are pre-shrunk
- Wear damp
- Keep going and remember to smile!
32 minutes later the pants were back on my arse and my make-up was great. It is possible I rolled up my white shirt and pink cardigan while driving so the blue of the pants didn’t leak onto them.
After the pants adventure, everything else should be without ridiculousness – right?
I proceeded to trip up the stairs backstage, drop a water bottle on my foot resulting in a bruise, and nearly lose the battery pack for the microphone in the toilet on my second nervous trip to the bathroom.
I found myself laughing at myself. I’m never going to be super sleek, all put together presenter. I am just Donloree.
So at the 11th hour, I went with Donloree.
Yes, I wished I was 20 pounds lighter, had more, longer, better books for sale and was way more polished, but I suddenly remembered something. Something very important. Something foundational.
You shine best when you’re YOU, not when you’re polished.
I told them about the early morning ridiculousness, shared awkward stories, and made them laugh, laugh a lot, from the gut.
Through sharing the ridiculousness and just being me, I think they found themselves and left inspired and ready to take a step towards who they are, not who they think they should be.
After all, isn’t being YOU the best thing you could ever do?
Yesterday was a poignant time for me to remember that I am funny and funny is awesome. And to realize I can do big things without falling off the stage.
What makes you awesome?