Twelve Months of Awkward Moments arrives August 30. I’m anxious. Not your normal new book anxious, but the kind of emotion that interferes with every day life.
I could write about my main character Dani suffering from anxiety because I’ve lived it, and gee, it’s not fun. I don’t know when it began. I was always a quiet, sensitive, and weird child. I grew up in a dysfunctional family — story for another day.
My memories of school include not talking and being scared of every adult. One of my teachers made me so nervous, I puked in class. But it was always part of life. Growing up in the 70s and 80s it wasn’t a diagnosis, and it took me years to think about it that way.
I’ve learned to manage and my personal anxiety has given me a lot of empathy for the students in the class who suffer from it. The next time I’m too quiet, it is because I don’t want to say the wrong thing. I’ll remember my stupidity for years. The next time I skip a party it is because I’d rather have a stomach bug than be in a situation where I could possibly do something wrong. Days before the party, all the “what if” scenarios scream through my head.
I’m still recovering from Yale and Rutgers. Amazing experiences that left me so drained emotionally and physically. Anxiety plays out not only in your mind but in your body.
I’m hoping Twelve months of Awkward Moments might shed some light on what students go through. I’m hoping you’ll get a copy and talk to me about it.