The lost art of really listening to people. The secret to it is we communicated with our bodies. Open stances or closed stances, fiddling and looking away, shifting glances, wild gestures or uncomfortable arm crossing. The saying “Actions speak louder than words” is a lot of the time true. That’s why reading body language helps tell us when we are being lied to or how people really feel versus what they are saying. A good listener can see these things. A true listener can start to understand someone better by these things. Seeing how a person responds physically can communicate their insecurities and their confidences, the things they like and dislike, and also whether they are extremely selfish or are relaxed and loving. Someone who really listens can see right through people.
Then sometimes silence (or the lack of action) speaks louder than words. Whether that inaction is someone saying one thing and doing another or being completely passive and not communicating at all.
That’s why I wrote a song called “Silence is death”
I wrote this because the lack of communication is a huge scream in itself. Crying silently, suffering in silence, sighing silently. It’s all a way of showing a burden, communicating pain or indifference. Especially indifference. “The silent treatment” is a way to communicate my pain that doesn’t need words to describe it. Everyone knows what it is. Everyone understands why. It’s because sometimes the amount of weight I’m carrying inside me is boiling under my skin and its turning my eyes red and soggy, its breaking me so much I can’t even speak. Sometimes the silence is necessary because I’m screaming so loud on the inside I can’t bear to speak anymore. Or maybe its the opposite, maybe it’s because the world and people around me are so loud I can’t handle the noise anymore so I stopped trying and shut down. Maybe I’m too tired of this sick mess to speak anymore. Words fall short of the things I want to say.
This is why people say things like this:
“If you’re really listening, if you’re awake to the poignant beauty of the world, your heart breaks regularly. In fact, your heart is made to break; its purpose is to burst open again and again so that it can hold evermore wonders.”
― Andrew Harvey
Sometimes its really hard to be bursting at the seems like this always. I take a chill pill and reseed into a happy numbness, which sometimes solves the problems and I start to see that I don’t have to hate and hurt from all the noise around me and inside me. I can let it out and in and breathe and be one with it or separate my self from it. Nothing is permanent. But I do wear my anger on my heart and not on my skin. I wear it on the inside where it festers and starts to boil again and I start my silence.
There’s a difference between serenity and being numb.
Communicating like this isn’t all there is though. Sometimes small talk and social interaction in the trivial pursuits can be a fueling ground for socialites or a draining all-consuming pit of terror. Sometimes I love to gossip and joke with my friends, and other times it tears me apart inside to hear idiotic and pointless words. I get so upset I give a silent tantrum and stop speaking to people.
‘Cause I’ve seen more spine on jellyfish
I’ve seen more guts in eleven year old kids
Have another drink and drive yourself home
I hope there’s ice on all the roads
And you can think of me when you forget your seatbelt
And again when your head goes through the windshield
Is that what you call tact?
You’re as subtle as a brick
In the small of my back
So let’s end this call and end this conversation
We shall look back to sophmore year (although I was 14..the age of an 8th grader), beginning in September. I was taking 3 courses, Biology at 9:40, Latin 1 at 11:20 and British Literature and Writing at 1:30 (after lunch). My schedule is extremely important to this story. My not-boyfriend-boyfriend now The X schedule was: 8:00 American Literature and Writing 2, 9:40 Physics (which he hated) and 11:20 Spanish 3. He would usually stay for lunch, and this 40 minute time span was my attack and attach supremacy. I really just wanted to be near him. I could give you the reasons, but you would want to barf, as I do now thinking back on my infatuation with The X.
We had frequently texted and chatted on Face book that entire summer, I not missing a single hour to get in touch with him. It was my sworn duty to. (Oh God, I was pathetic.)
He had told me this: “I like you, but I cant have you as a distraction for the school year, can we officially date when I graduate?” (did I mention he was a senior and one of the student body leaders?) This I thought at the time was smart, I told my self that he was wise and was thinking ahead for the better of our relationship. What a total ditts I was. He was really just trying to put me off… makes me wonder how he sees me now.
So it continued like that, texting, chatting, never talking on the phone (he thought it was awkward, I think he just was avoiding me. hahahaha) and I would latch on during lunch to his arm that was in a crook with his hand stuck in the pockets of his navy fleece that he always wore, and I hated that thing. I over looked my hate for his hand-me-down jeans and t-shirts from his older brother. I was being nice to never kidnap him and make him go shopping with me for true man clothes. (shoulda when I coulda)
Finally, the fatal weeks came. It was the second week after Christmas, and it was vacation, He hadn’t replied to my texts for 3 days and I was getting worried that he was sick or something bad had happened. Ali was sleeping over that night and she and I stayed very late, and at 2 am I had enough of his silence. I texted him: “We haven’t talked for a while, you doing okay?” He replied: “Do you know what time it is?” I and Ali laughed.. of course we did, wouldn’t have texted if we didn’t. It was the perfect time to strike, he was vulnerable in his sleep-deprivation. I replied: “Yes, but it shouldn’t stop me should it?” Then he said the fatal words. “I need to talk to you at school during lunch. Wayne’s. Be there Tuesday.” I could have cried. I knew what was coming and I was angry.
Burning pits of hell couldn’t stop me from unleashing my anger upon anyone in sight.
The day came and we talked..or he talked and I smiled and nodded. (My brother and I are experts at suppressing our feelings and dealing with them later.. when its appropriate to, that’s why it’s so easy to trick people into thinking it’s all okay.)
He said: “This is really hard for me to say.” He continued after pausing to look into my eyes. “I really really really like you, but everyone (meaning his family, his youth group, his mentor his friends, blah blah.) is telling me to break it off with you. Is this okay?” I said, “Of course it is, I totally understand.” And I was a doll, an empty shell, no thoughts, no feelings, just an empty understanding.
I got in the car when my mom picked me up after school and immediately started bawling. I had an audition for Snow White that night and couldn’t sing anything.. except for Memory from Cats by Andrew Lloyd Webber. He totally ruined my audition. I forgive him though.
A few weeks later:
“You know you are my worst enemy?” I said to Jerkface #1 in Waynes.
“Your what?” Jerkface #1 said, popping one eye brow up like he always did.
“My worst enemy, your Jerkface #1 on the list buddy. But don’t worry, I love you.”
I said looking straight into his deep doggy brown eyes, then staring into The X’s as well. I started to turn and walk away.
“I bet I am jerkface #2,” said The X.
I turned back to him, “No, you’re not a jerk… your just..” I walked away, knowing he was something very different than Jerkface #1.
Comment and tell me if you want to hear more stories like this. I got a life time supply of them. (See Guy list for references of male stories.)
I’ve been listening to Jesus Christ Superstar soundtrack. I really am in love with Andrew Lloyd Webber. He’s a wonderful composer.
I’m reading Frankenstein. Its very…ah well psychotic. At least the main character is over working himself, and then not eating, and the lack of nutrients is making him psychotic and I think he hallucinates a lot… but this is probably not the conclusion literally professor’s give. This is my realization and summery of the sad and demented mind of Dr. Victor Frankenstein.
Here is a story I wrote for my British Literature class; one of the most difficult class offered too 10th graders, its college prep or extreme honors to a private school.
THE SCULPTED ANGEL a memoir
He was an illusion of an angel, a stone white angel, but no less a divine and perfect being. With the aura and features an angel might provide. He was laying on the sand with scattered shells all around him. He wasn’t wearing much, only a small knitted cloth tied around his hips. His body was bent awkwardly atop a mound of sand and rock, making his legs and head lower than his elevated middle. His hair spread out in long tendrils like water flowing from a spring. It stretched across his left hand and arm, thrown back near his head. The other arm was also thrown back, its pearly underbelly laid crooked next to his face. His ribs stuck out tightly through his skin. I looked even closer and saw shimmering pearls stuck to his body, and others trapped in his small cloth.
I bent over him, keeping my hands clenched at my sides. No touching, I thought. He wasn’t breathing, nor were his eyes flickering under his eye lids. His lips were slightly blue and very still. His chest appeared stony and granite like. He was more beautiful than any man I had ever seen.
There was nothing I could do; he was dead, frozen in lifelessness. I wanted to stroke his long hair, fix his body so it wasn’t broken on the land he was washed up on. The ocean had killed him. The striking beauty of his appearance had remained with his body, unlike his soul and mind, which abandoned the beating of his heart.
Maybe he was too beautiful. Did God take his life for a better use, or was he subjected to death so I could see him? Was this a dream?
I stepped back, out of my dream, leaving the roaring ocean, the sand, the pearls, and the image of my love behind. The lighting was good in the museum, making it so there were no shadows. I looked down at the milky white sculpture of the Dead Pearl Diver, and immediately felt myself wanting to return to the world where I was sitting on the sand next to his broken form. I was here though, next to his sculpture, not on a beach. I was in a small museum in Portland, Maine, gazing down at a rock, the dead and soulless form of my love.
I reached out to stroke his face as my mind was going back to the beach. I turned my fingers to my palms when I awakened to the reality that he was not animated. I took a meaningless picture that would never capture his true beauty. The spectacular carving of every smooth and sheen centimeter of him was perfect. At that moment, I decided that he was my dream. A dream I could always return to, where he was magnificently poised and arched over the rock hard sand of my imagined beach. He would lie forever next to the ocean that took his life and inspired mine.
I could hardly pull myself away from his side. My brother and mother moved me to continue on to other things in the museum. All I wanted was to look at him, The Dead Pearl Diver, the man of my dreams.
I just need to write about Zombies for a moment. I’m wearing my “I heart Zombies” rubber bracelet that my cats like to chew. I also have another rubber bracelet that says “Zombies” and is neon green and glows vibrantly in the dark.
OH~ also my friend posted some strange thing on her wall on Facebook that I just saw, and it said: “Tim flew, Alien abduction?”
I just needed to talk about both Aliens and Zombies in the same post again. I’m thinking about putting them into every post and maybe drawing conclusions with them. They could be crucial to this blog!