I was asked to be a M.O.T.M. StoryTeller. I was all for it...until I actually had to do it! Then I freaked out!

I mean sweating, hyperventilating, mind went blank, tryna’ figure out how I could fake my death to get out of it because I'm too afraid to say, "hey I changed my mind". And no, I'm not kidding. If you know me, you know that I have a flare for the dramatics and this is quite literally something I would contemplate.

However, I REFUSED to start writing anything until I had another session. It's not like I could write anyway because my mind was as dry as the desert!

I mean.. who did I think I was anyway?!

I was in a full panic y'all! Like, who in the world did I think I was, saying yes to this woman for this project? This responsibility?! I write one lil’ poem in middle school and now I think I'm freaking Maya Angelou or Toni Morrison! That's what I get for running my big mouth; talking about how much I love to write. Now someone done went and had the nerve to push me to think I could do something outside of my comfort zone. AND I had the nerve to buy into it. To believe I could. Well here I am....

Allow me to introduce myself. 

My name is Ja'Nelle. I'm super anxious and I'm pretty much winging this! So let's see how this goes shall we!?

Ps. I wrote an actual "submission".. it's purely where I was in the moment. See below.



Why in the world did I say yes?

I have no idea what to write and isn't that what writers are supposed to do?! Know what to WRITE?!

Wait. Stop. Just breathe.

But my style isn't like theirs. I write weird. I write like I speak, all twangy like I'm mixing colors in my mouth. When I write I'm talking to myself, having a conversation with other versions of me. It's safe in here. In my head. And now other people are going to come in!


This is for healing remember. This journey that you're on. But it's not just about you. Other people need this too. People are watching you. Oh God people are watching you!

It's okay. Breathe.

This is harder than I thought. It's getting tight in my chest. Breathe.

This first step is always hard. Shaky. Weird. Scary. Chile why did you say yes?! Girl TURN BACK!!

No...just breathe.

You can do this. She wouldn't have asked if she didn't think you could do this. You got this. Take the step.


Just Start.


How do you reduce or eliminate your anxiety and anxiousness right now? Here are 9 ways that have been shown to work:

1. Take a deep breath.

2. Accept that you’re anxious.

3. Realize that your brain is playing tricks on you.

4. Question your thoughts.

5. Use a calming visualization.

6. Be an observer — without judgment.

7. Use positive self-talk.

8. Focus on right now.

9. Focus on meaningful activities.

Have you talked yourself out of doing something lately? Have you had paralysis by analysis?

Let us hear your voice, our community wants to hear from you!

Written by: Ja'Nelle

M.O.T.M StoryTeller 



1220 Race Street
PO Box #6435
Baltimore MD 21230-0435


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