The amazing story of two 40-something women on the path to matrimonial bliss

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Sunday, February 3, 2013

Can You Hear Me Now?

I am not going to lie--there is a part of me that wishes relationships (parent-child; spousal, work, friends, you name it) could be smooth sailing all the time.  It still perplexes me how things can seem amazingly simpatico one day and two days later, there can be such a disconnect and misunderstandings abound.  You may as well be whispering to each other from across a crater.  It confuses me and, straight up, makes me a tad cranky!

I don't have all the answers, but, I have learned a few things.  Speaking for me, much of the time, I just need to feel genuinely heard.  I'm not looking for solutions or absolution or any other lution--I just want to feel like my experience, version, imaginings, emotions, etc. are receiving a bit of validation.

I think I know my kids pretty well--but I don't know them all the time.  Especially now that they are grown and living on their own.  I try hard not to define them as who I knew them to be 5, 10 or even 20 years ago.  Still, they have huge chunks of their lives that really have absolutely nothing to do with me.  We may have a great conversation one day and I'll feel like I know right where they are at; and then two weeks later, I feel like I fell asleep and lost track for 100 years!  

It can be tough to be sweet to the people you see the most.  How is it that our best manners, kindest smiles and friendliest banter seem to be reserved for strangers, acquaintances and those whom we barely know? We listen intently as the person on line at the grocery store tells us their recent woeisms (as in woe-is-me-isms; a term invented by my daughter, Lilly) but shrug off tales of the inner spiritual churnings of our closest friends?  Why is it one is easier to hear than the other?

I am compelled by connection and communication; you might say I crave authentic communication (and maybe that is why I do the work I do); it is one of the reasons I am less of a stickler for perfect grammar and classic sentence structure than some of the other writers/grammar zealots out there; all I care about is: did communication occur?  How easy was it for connection, understanding and the transfer of thoughts and feelings to go down? I don't really give a hoot if you use perfect spelling or Oxford commas; I don't really care if people mispronounce words when we are chatting--if I understand them; if communication is happening, then good things are afoot!

So, it would probably stand to reason that lack of groovy communication and disconnect are realities of this human experience that get me down--especially with those I spend most of my living time with!  I wish it was smooth, easy, consistent but, as Teri reminds me when I get frustrated about this, we are all different people.  Other folks are not merely extensions of me and we are often speaking different personal languages; it takes work to get and stay connected and communication is the journey--not the end result.

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