Minefield

Having social anxiety
is like being in a minefield.

You fear that one misstep
(i.e. one awkward moment,
one poorly constructed sentence,
one accidental overshare,
one missed cultural reference,
etc. etc. etc….)
would mean complete
social and emotional
annihilation.

So, naturally, you don’t move.
You just stand there,
paralyzed.

Part of the Family

I finally see the mean inner voices for what they are:
part of the family.
I’m never going to eradicate them.
Fear,
self-doubt,
self-criticism,
and depression
will always be in the car
in the road trip of my life–
a month from now,
a year from now,
ten years from now.
And that’s okay.
They can be here–
as long as they know their place.
They sit in the back.
They sit shotgun.
They are not the driver.
I repeat:
They are not the driver.

*Credit where credit is due: this poem is a paraphrase of a part of Big Magic, by Elizabeth Gilbert.*