When someone asks me a question about something I have had a lot of thoughts about, I don't consistently come up with the "best" thing to say on the spot.
And when I say "best", I'm referring to the moment several minutes (or hours) later when I decide, "God, why didn't I say ___?" I tend to think and rethink the conversation, mulling over things I *could* have said, or things I *should* have brought up.
I don't know why this is, or what pattern dictates its occurrence. Sometimes I nail it, but sometimes... not. Sometimes I say exactly what I mean in the exact way I want it conveyed, and sometimes I totally muck it up (in my opinion, anyway - no one else knows that I'm second-guessing those particular responses).
Let's take, for example, the question I'm likely to get this Sunday as I work at the Government Relations booth at the JDRF Walk: "What does an advocate do?"
It's such a big question, with so many right answers. Advocating can be sharing your own story, thoughts, feelings about what life with diabetes is like to the people in your life. Advocating can be bringing that story to policy makers and community leaders. Advocating can be speaking up to the media; writing letters, emails and memes; making phone calls; writing blog posts. Advocating can be wearing a blue pin. It can be so many things.
What I hope is that I can convey that to the people who approach the table this Sunday, willing to hear me out. I hope I can be a good advocate for advocacy. (Um, this is getting really meta.)
What I also need to remember is that concern over saying the "right" thing shouldn't prevent me from saying anything in the first place.
And I hope that it doesn't prevent you, either.