“Can you repeat the word?”.
“That is incorrect, the correct spelling is M-a-g-n-o-l-i-a”.
And just like that I was the first kid out of my county spelling bee.
I know how to spell Magnolia! Are you kidding me, that would have been a breeze!
I just could not relax. It was my first time in front of a big auditorium of strangers. But I do not think that was even the entire problem. I wanted to do well so badly that I could not concentrate.
I do not even think Magnolium is a word. I have no clue where I heard it from. Most likely a TV show somewhere.
To avoid a rant from my 10 year old self I really just wanted to write this to reflect on that experience and point out some things that now I can see were learning points from that day.
What did I learn?
- Do not be afraid to stand up for yourself. I should have listened to the man from the audience that approached me after I was out about challenging the pronunciation. Yes, I did not really care at the time. I simply wanted to get out of there. But now I realize that if you don’t stand up for yourself, no one will.
- Do not be nervous. Easier said than done but I think I was so worried about making a fool of myself that in turn that is exactly what I did.
- You will live to see another day. It was embarrassing at the time. But now I look back and laugh. Life moves on and learning from mishaps instead of fretting over them is the best option.
And lastly I learned that Magnolia is my least favorite word of all time.
Hope you enjoyed the read. If so please give it some claps. Best!