I look deep into your eyes when you talk to me. Imploring your irises to join your lips to tell the tale. I am sucked into their depth as your anguish swirls like a dark hole transporting me to another universe.
I am transfixed by the sight of your tears. I gaze at your animated face, your joy infectious, as you narrate these fantastic episodes with great excitement. Your dimples dive in. One is under your left eye, closest to your highly defined cheekbones, and the other is on your right cheek. I join you and smile sheepishly as you rattle on.
Hope is something you’re shrouded in. I can hear it in your choice of words and the hitch of your breath as you say the last few words. You do not whisper them. No, you say them like a declaration. Like an oath.
I am caught in your story. Your anxiety is palpable. It sets fear deep in my bones. Fear that I may not be able to hold the darkness back on your behalf this time. I see your vein pulsating, bulging fast against your temple as you strain from worry. I watch as beads of sweat start to form on your upper lip. My eyes moisten of their own accord.
I can hear it in your voice. The anger laces every word and your hurt is evident. I reach out to hold your hands, steady them, and keep them warm. You are feeling many things. I tell you that I’m here for you. I tell you to feel all the feelings until you know what they are and can call them by name.
My phone is face down.
My eyes are brimming with tears of confusion. I can feel my mouth drying up as my emotions well up. My heart is racing like Usain. I can not distinguish between terror and bewilderment.
My hands tremble with rage as I recount my woes to you. I can feel the pain physically in my ribcage, trapped like an escaped puff of air floating where it should not be — outside my lungs but still within my chest. I take deep breaths that come out shaky and unsure. Just like I’m feeling. I pick up my phone to call you.
I find myself listening in on the phone. Though speaking, yet listening. To you. To your soul. But all I hear is tap tap tap, rap rap on the line, as your keypad presses every alphabet. As you reply to every text while I stare in amazement. At the stain on my ceiling until it becomes a blur thanks to the hot tears that slide down my cheeks. I wonder if those you’re texting know that I am at breaking point and I
Lately, I have been confronted more and more with my ineptitude in listening. I am more argumentative and less likely to let one finish speaking before cutting in.
In a world filled with so much noise and so many things clamouring for our attention, we must make a deliberate effort to listen to the people around us. To our bodies. To the planet and all that is happening within her.
Please be reminded that hearing is different from listening. One is registering auditory sensory inputs, another is identifying, decoding and comprehending the input. One can be done with little or no effort, the other requires keen attention.
I am learning that language is not only verbal. And if you listen with your heart, you’re less likely to miss the nuances. I hope you join me on this quest. Where I am quick to listen, slow to speak and even slower to anger.
*** If you enjoyed this, please don’t forget to clap - 50x if possible xoxo🤗✨