08 June 2008

Anxiety. Writing. Speaking. Comfort.

This week, I am responsible for writing and giving a speech.

Although I have given countless lectures and a few papers at conferences, I am terrified of giving speeches. They make me nervous, uneasy and downright scared.

I'm the maid of honor in a wedding.

These speeches are strange. I'm sending someone off into a life that I know nothing about or I'm supposed to eulogize the person who is getting married.

I don't necessarily want to do either of those things.

I don't think that I want the speech to be a traditional one. I don't want to reflect on the friendship that I've had with this person and make it a "remember when we were 15 and talked about the men we were going to marry?"

Because we never talked about that.

I just want to wish her well.

I also don't want reflect on how much has changed (particularly in the last year ) in the seventeen and half years that we have known one another.

I just want to write a good speech, the one that is expected and the one that will do.

And now I need some comfort. I have this and one other big thing going on, and I just want some comfort. (I know. I'm being such a girl.)


Essentially Me said...

You're not being a girl. I had to write a speech and pretty much did it the night before because I found it difficult to write. I think I wrote a good one ... but I'm pretty sure that only about half the people there were actually listening.

Dexter Colt said...

I've given a lot of speeches. I prefer to go to them unprepared (i.e., no pre-written speeches, no rehearsals, no advice). The reason I do this is I just feel like the best speeches are impromptu. It works for me because I am a person to talks to fill the silence...

You're the maid of honor. You don't have to introduce the second coming of Jesus. Just relax and wish the bride well. And, say whatever else you feel like mentioning. You don't have to be funny of poetic or memorable. Just say what you would say if no one was there...

Chances are it will be funny, poetic, and memorable.

Just be real and you'll be fine. My last best man speech was made up on the fly, and people seemed to love it. But, to be quite honest, it might have been the vodka and tonics speaking...

a little of this, a little of that... said...

Relax. Hang in there. Odds of a good speech increase dramatically if there is an open bar (not because the speech is any better, but because you will feel better about it and fewer people will remember exactly what you said. Unless it is recorded... uh, relax and hang in there?).

Claven said...

I have never done this before myself. Yep, none of my friends have named me a best man. However I actually dig public speaking.

Play to your strengths. Start typing up something as you would a blog entry. Then massage as needed.

susan said...

Whoa. I don't know why it was your post that reminded me and not, like, my own brain or something, but as MOH at my sister's wedding in 2 weeks, I need to get working on a speech too. Yikes. Somehow this seemed a lot easier when my best friend got married 5(ish) years ago.

Jackart said...

Maid of honour speeches, Like the best man? You do that over there? Is that not a cruel and unusual punishment? Surely the division of labour is chaps entertain, girls look pretty?

Best of luck and don't try the gag about "Aisle Alter Hymn". I've vowed to kill, disembowel and eat the next person who does.

cuff said...

Keep it brief, talk about how long you've known her, a funny story, about how wonderful her new husband is (or at least about how wonderful she thinks he is), then toast to many happy years to come.

DONT bring up that spring break bacchanal, the overcoming substance addiction, or the murder rap.