I was sitting shotgun next to my favorite person, Kyle.
Kyle has been my boyfriend for many years, but he has also become one of my best friends. One day during the fall, he picked me up from school, and we were headed back to his house.
I had a presentation that day in one of my communication classes. I was gearing up for it all week, and I felt like I did a decent job. In that moment, I was feeling fairly proud of myself, even though I stuttered a little bit.
As I was enjoying being in the heated car with the music up loud, Kyle asked me how my presentation went. I turned towards him and said,
"Pretty good! I only stuttered a couple of times and ..."
"Audri, stop," Kyle said abruptly.
I sat back in my seat and said, "What's the matter?"
I thought to myself, "I was so excited to tell him about my presentation, and he just shut me down."
He took a deep breath and put his right hand over mine, while he kept his left hand on the steering wheel.
"You need to stop focusing on your stutter when you give presentations. Just because you stuttered doesn't mean that you did a bad job. You usually only think about stuttering, when you really should be focusing on what you said."
He paused and then he asked me a couple of questions. "Did you prepare for your presentation?" I said, "Yes." "Did you meet all of the requirements?" I said, "Yes." "Then you did a great job, Audri, even if you did stutter."
Then he squeezed my hand gently, and he gave me a soft smile as he put his right hand back on the steering wheel.
I leaned into my seat again. I looked back at him and said, "Yeah, you're right. Thank you."
I felt good about my presentation before I got into his car, but I felt even better after Kyle's pep talk.
Sometimes it doesn't matter how you said something. If you can get your point across, then that is the only thing that matters.
On days when my speech is getting ahead of me, I have to give myself this gentle reminder.
As Kyle graciously said before, I need to stop focusing so much on my speech. Just because I stuttered, doesn't mean that I failed.
My speech therapist at Circle Creek Therapy, Courtni, has always reminded me of this too.
Whenever I would leave my speech therapy sessions at Circle Creek Therapy, I would always feel encouraged and empowered. The therapists that work at Circle Creek always have your best interests at heart, and I couldn't be more grateful for them.
If you're interested in Circle Creek Therapy, please give them a call at 253.237.3405. They are always willing to talk to you about your questions or concerns.