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Verbal Insecurities

I find it amazing how I find it so much easier to write than to talk. If I didn’t have the ability to write, I know my true potential would never be witnessed since I can only present my best self through written word. One of my first semester professors at Kean said to me, “You don’t know Holly until you’ve read her writing.” I don’t mean to boast, but I have to agree.
I suppose it all goes back to when I was born. I was 2 ½ months premature and had a disease called Hemihypertrophy Macroglossia, two big words meaning my muscles formed a bit off course causing one side of my body to be longer than the other and giving me a deformity of my tongue. Though I should be proud of the progress I have made after years of speech therapy, the changes my disease makes to my speech are a huge insecurity for me. Those close to me have grown accustomed to it and barely think I have an impediment at all. However, there have been a brazen few new people I have met that are quick to point it out. Not only does this cause me stress when I give presentations in front of people, like for class assignments, but I also am hyperconscious of it when meeting new people for the first time. All I can think about is how they are judging my voice. It has directly resulted in my shyness and borderline social anxiety, which both, in turn, have held me back from various opportunities. Recently, I have been learning to accept it, but it is still a struggle in every social situation I face.
The irony of that last paragraph is I would never feel comfortable talking about my disease in front of others, yet writing has given me the tools and courage to do and reveal things I would have never had while speaking. In fact, this blog has been a surprising outlet for me as I use it to express myself through words. I understand it is not helping my social insecurities, but I am greatly enjoying the freedom and power this blog has given me.

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