The Gift of Listening

Growing up,I had the feeling that nobody ever listened to me. The truth is I don’t think much listening to other people was part of our family reality.

One Thanksgiving celebration was at my Aunt Nellie and Uncle Wilbur’s house. They had a house with a rather small living room and connected dining room. It was packed.

Suddenly I shouted out ” Stop talking. I counted 21 people in this room and 14 different conversations. Some of you are involved in two conversations at the same time.” There was a moment of silence then the din of all the conversations started right back up.

We were taught never to share family secrets outside the family.Now as an adult that implies to me, that family secrets would be shared inside the family. Nothing could be less true. When I was 15, my dad killed himself with my gun. No one who was an adult then has ever asked me how I felt about my father using my gun to commit suicide.

Thankfully these days my life is filled with people, family and otherwise who listen to me without thinking about what they are going to say next.


One thought on “The Gift of Listening

  1. George,

    I hope you are well and that you are open to reconnecting.

    You have been on my mind of late as I have been doing an inventory of past and present relationships.

    Since I now live in Florida (alongside a myriad of other retirees), I am suggesting an email friendship.

    My concern as we both age is that any unresolved matter that blocks friendship be resolved.

    We shared a season that was difficult for both of us. For me, that time along skid row was life altering.

    Hope you will respond.

    carlfielstra@gmail.com

    Blessings,

    CJF

    Like

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