[personal profile] ignited_spirit
I will never forget walking in the door that Monday night.

"Are you here for Toastmasters?", asked the friendly lady with the welcoming smile.

"Yes I am!", I replied cheerfully.

"Well, you picked an interesting night to come - it is contest night."

"I'm sorry. I'll come back another night." I backed away, feeling terrible that I came on a contest night (every fall, Toastmasters groups have club contests in humorous speech and Table Topics (impromptu speech).

"No, no, that's fine - come on in", she reassured me. I was given a guest package, and a little introduction to Toastmasters, and led into the meeting area.

When I was introduced to the club president that evening, I found out that she first came to Toastmasters on a contest night. I started to feel better. People were coming up to me, and asking me if I had any questions. I felt very welcome there. I was even invited to come back the next week to one of their regular meetings.

I remember the first time I got called up for Table Topics. I was still officially a guest, so I could opt out if I wanted to. However, looking around the room at all those encouraging faces, I decided to go for it. I made a total fool of myself, yet when I finished, I was greeted with friendly smiles. That meant so much to me.

This past Monday, I was officially "inducted" into the Vibrant Speakers Toastmasters Club (the other members had to take a vote as to whether or not to let me in). I looked out upon the faces of my fellow Toastmasters and saw their smiles, and I had one for them as well. Being accepted and wanted by others really makes me smile :)

I look forward to many smiles on many Monday evenings to come.
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October 2010


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