No no no, don’t get me wrong, I’m not going to tell you all my problems…well, not here, anyway, but I need to talk. Hopefully I AM the only person in the known universe who finds this difficult.
This is dumb.
People talk just fine most of the time. I talk a lot…some people might say A LOT…but it’s about the weather and why I like red chairs and white chocolate and what on earth my kids are thinking. I don’t talk about…stuff. I think it’s just me. But it’s bad.
When I was a kid I spent heaps of time waiting for my parents. I was an only child. I’d have a book to read or some paper to draw on, but basically there’d be a lot of waiting, and listening, and what I heard was always the same thing: my parents telling people their problems.
I knew their problems already. I lived in our house. I had ears and eyes, and I figured that the three of us was about as far as that stuff needed to go. I didn’t roll my eyes at them because I was a good girl, but I decided, at the age of eleven, that I wasn’t going to tell anyone anything. Ever.
Except the stuff about the red chairs and the white chocolate, that was okay.
And that’s how things have stayed. Please tell me that I AM the only person who tells her husband and her best friends that she’s had a bad day…three days after the fact. It’s dumb. It really is. People need to talk about stuff. We do.
There’s just something about opening your mouth and pulling your heart out of it and giving it to another person that just smacks of the unsafe and faintly ridiculous. You have to trust people. You have to know them enough to believe that they do care, they do value what you’re telling then and that they won’t take that little piece of heart you’ve given them and stomp on it. You’ve got to trust that they are strong enough to be able to take that little piece of your heart and nestle it in next to theirs for a while until that little piece of your heart feels strong again. It’s not easy. The staircase that your heart has to climb up out of your chest, spiraling around your throat and up and out of your mouth is a long one. Sometimes my words get tired, and often they stop just before they reach the opening, and I will look at the person I’m with and nod my head sagely as if they know already, and while my tired heart pants in the back of my mouth my tongue pulls out the safe answer to the big question of “what’s happening?” and shoves it out for my listening friend, “Oh, you know. Stuff.” So today I’ve made a decision, and it’s this. It’s a big one:
I need to talk.