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Pressure kills

In high school since everyone seems to think highly of me, they have chosen me to represent our batch in an intra-high school popularity contest. During pageant night, I started uncomfortably and went on that way until the end. Production number, casual wear and sportswear went on with discomfort but I was chosen to be at the Top 5 or the Semi-Finalist.

Question and answer portion came and I did my best to keep myself sane. I was called and in front of the crowd, I am standing still. I was asked to pick a tiny piece of paper from a fish bowl. I took one and handed it over to the emcee. He read a name from it who I heard one of the judges in front of us who has prepared a question for me. The judge, a female who I cannot see after attempting to adopt my eyes to the blinding lights, threw a question which is “if you were to become a senator, what you will focus on?” I seemingly gathered myself after hearing the question. “That was an awfully easy question,” I told myself. I confidently answered the question with all my guts. I was expecting a growl from the audience because that is what audience do after an admirable answer but they were silent. I did not bother myself asking why.

From the five of us finalists, I was the 2nd Runner up.

Months later in a recitation class after my teacher was impressed by my answer to a question she raised, how come you did not answer the question right during the pageant. It was a really common question you can answer brilliantly anytime. Then it dawned on me remembering what happened up there on stage. The judge gave me a question but I heard her differently. Nervousness blocked my ear off the voice of the judge. I placed too much pressure on my shoulders I almost went numb. I wasn’t thinking straight. I got drowned over-thinking of expectations of the people who helped me get there on the stage, of my classmates, of my batch, and of everyone else. I forgot to enjoy what I am doing and remembered only the competition I was in. Only at that moment did I accept that I was not cheated. Rather, I lost because I over-pressured myself.

Up to this moment I really don’t know what question was given to me. I know though that it was related to what will I do to improve the education system.

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Posted on July 18th, 2014 by aprilmusa


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