I used a quote written by C. Joybell C. that said:
"We can't be afraid of change. You may feel very secure in the pond you're in, but if you never venture out of it, you will never know that there is such a thing as an ocean, a sea..."
Too many people I've known over the years missed out on opportunities because they weren't willing to take advantage of a potential change in their lives. Even when they were unhappy with their current situation, sometimes the urge to remain with what they're accustomed felt safer than delving into the unknown. It takes courage to break away from that secure feeling to try something new. If I hadn't taken a chance by moving somewhere where I had no family or friends (not to mention knew nothing about the state), I never would have been in the position where I encountered the stranger on a plane who introduced me to misophonia. I might still be tortured by triggers thinking I was crazy and not knowing that there was actually a medical reason for my suffering.
We'll see what happens tomorrow. If I win the next round, I get to move onto the District contest next month. If not, at least I'll know that I was able to introduce the term "misophonia" to a few more people. Perhaps when my competing time ends, I'll post the write-up of the entire speech for everyone to see.
I will add that the contest situation was affected by my misophonia. When I first arrived at the room, I put my belongings at the back row of the seating setup to be near some of my other club members. As the start of the contest approached, I discovered that all of the seats in the back row were for the judges. The other contestants and guests had already took over the ends of the rows, so the only seats available were right in the center of the first row. I begrudgingly moved to one of those seats but as soon as I sat down, the woman next to me pulled out a rustling bag of crunchy snacks. Luckily, the contest hadn't started yet, but I started to become very anxious. There were no other seats available and I knew that bag of snack food was going to stress me out big time! So, I gathered my belongings and went to the back of the room where there were a few tables set up. The Division Governor was sitting in that area and although I don't think she was too happy that I wasn't sitting with everyone else, not to mention that these tables were behind the judges area, I explained that I have a sound sensitivity issue and said if she'd be okay with it, I'd really prefer to sit in the back. I was very happy that she allowed me to do so. It was a much better location than if I had remained next to the bag rustler.
I did learn from that experience though. Tomorrow I'll make an effort to get to the contest early so I can have more options when choosing where I ultimately sit during the event.