I savor the words of my primary school teacher in my mouth “you do not fail

I savor the words of my primary school teacher in my mouth “you do not fail, you learn a new way of how not to succeed”.
She said it once during a class presentation when I broke into shivers because I was too frightened to stand before my classmates and read out an essay I had written. My classmates’ voices echoed in my mind as if a crowd of spectators being entertained. The worst part is when I fainted only to wake up at the school dispensary soaking in my sweat.
Walking back to class, it felt as if everyone had been a witness of the most embarrassing moment in my life. It did not help the second time of presenting my essay, I had tried the classic old trick of imagining my audience naked and this led to my own outburst of laughter. Now they were all certain that I was insane. I convicted myself for months.
I had failed at believing in myself and at courage. My encounter with the embarrassment that followed that ordeal encouraged me to overcome my fear. I made a mental note never to let people laugh at me, only at my jokes but never at me.
I embarked on a journey of self-growth. Building up my self-esteem by listening to public speakers, artists and poets and questioning those that I know about how they get through the stage fright. Reading more books to be well acquainted with English and even Kiswahili. I wrote more often and practiced with my friends on my presentation. I mastered the etiquette of public speaking.
I had not failed, I had just learned that not believing in myself and being discouraged is not how people succeed. That I should doubt my doubts instead of questioning the faith I have in myself. I have learnt that instead of constantly expecting the worst, I should always work for the best. With courage and faith in myself, I can achieve anything I set myself to achieve.