I have to do a presentation today. In front of the entire class. And to top that, it’s on a topic that I’m not very familiar or comfortable with. Granted, it’s a mock presentation and the final is in October but that does not decrease my anxiety in any way.
Doing the presentation is not the problem, doing it in front of so many people is. I only found out of Friday that the presentation is in front of the whole class and I’ve been freaking out since then. My mind is literally stuck on that one thought and I can’t move past it. I needed to finish preparing for the presentation but I have not because every time I start work on it or even think about it, I start having something resembling a mini panic attack. I can’t get my mind to rationally think and work. I have to leave for school in half an hour and I’m freaking out.
So the head of TOK (which is what my presentation is called) is also my English teacher. And after Saturday’s episode, Annie convinced me to go and talk to her and get help. But of course, I couldn’t. So Annie wrote her a letter from my side and I am going to give it to her today or tomorrow. Meanwhile, I was freaking out about this presentation and so I went to this teacher and asked her if it had to be done in front of the class and whether there was an option of avoiding that. She said that there wasn’t, due to logistical details. SO of course, I was freaking out even more. And another huge reason for my worry is that we are grouped academic ranking wise and I’m with the highest ranking group and so that means that all the smartest people in the school will be seeing my presentation. And my friend kept telling me that I am in that group because I belong there too but I feel like I ended up there by fluke!
So anyways, I went to my teacher again later that day and asked her what would happen if I messed this presentation up or if I didn’t do it at all. She said that I wouldn’t get feedback and the feedback would be crucial for doing a good final presentation. So then I came home from school and to avoid everything, I just slept for 4 hours because I knew I wasn’t going to get any sleep at night. Then I woke up around 7:30 – 8 in the evening and decided to write an email to my teacher explaining my anxiety issues. I wrote about why i didn’t want to present in front of people and about my social anxiety and I linked her to an article on Web MD about social anxiety and all that. But, I sent the email at 5 minutes to 9. And I know that she doesn’t check her email after 9. So she replied only this morning at around 5 am.
She started with saying that she wanted to meet my parents and she didn’t want to do so to add to my anxiety but rather to find a way forward. Then she talked a lot about how she understood what I was going through and she quoted a few things from the article I sent her and she asked me if I had ever been clinically diagnosed and all that. Then she also added that she couldn’t let me present to only the teachers as that would not be fair to the others and also that she would rather have me do badly here and get feedback and try to move past my fear than be nervous for the final. And I do understand that that these are all very valid points but they don’t help me in any way!!! I’m still very nervous and stressed.
Also, yesterday morning, I cut and my scars are really visible this time and I’m so worried that people are going to see when I give the presentation. And I don’t own any makeup to cover it up and neither do my friends and so that’s giving me a lot of anxiety too. FML.