How to Get over the Fear of Public Speaking
My father is a good Christian man who speaks with the kind of grace that can rouse three hundred souls, even during the pauses, even when he’s taking a breath. Cantonese slips on eloquence like a cheung sam dress as it leaves his tongue. Have you ever seen a congregation inhale as one, straighten its shoulders like an orchestra brought to attention?
My father has a voice like a train rushing headlong over the tracks near our church. My father’s voice was made for the gavel. My father’s voice gathers clouds. Be ye angry, and sin not: Let not the sun go down upon your wrath.
When I was a child, my father and I fought and my voice would cower, play Peter, deny me though it loved me. My voice would get lost, never find its way out of the safety of my lips. My voice was not made for war. It had the shakes and a fear of crowds.
Now, when I call upon my voice, I tell it this: Let them hear me. I am my father’s daughter.