You’re not shy

As long as I could remember I had been shy.

When I hid behind my Mum as a little girl so that I wouldn’t be in the photograph or kissed by some distant relative they said I was shy.

When I didn’t speak up in class at school they said I was shy.

So I knew I was shy.

Everyone knew I was shy.

Then one day when I was in my early 40s, I was talking to a neighbour.

I don’t know now what we were talking about but she must have made a suggestion because my answer was “I can’t do that, I’m too shy”.

She looked me straight in the eye and said “You’re not shy”.

So matter of fact, not a challenge, just a statement made with complete certainty.

Her words somehow penetrated through to a place of recognition within me.

I was stunned.

And by the time I had walked back to my house a few hundred yards away, I knew she was right.

I was not shy.

I joined a public speaking club, I took up modern jive, I did things that I couldn’t do when I was shy.

I didn’t have to make myself not shy, I didn’t have to overcome anything, I just had to realise that it wasn’t true, that it never had been.

(Image courtesy of Myriam Zilles on Pixabay)