Tuesday, June 3, 2008

To Say or Not to Say? That is the question...

Dearest Goddesses,

I've always wanted to be one of those people who rarely opened her mouth, but when she did the room was so silent a pin could drop. Instead, I find myself tripping over what I want to say, not being clear and fighting to be heard in some of the most mundane conversations. I also wish I had the power to tell people off that leaves them feeling reproached, but grateful for it.

I was with John and our friend Antonio the other day and we came across a house for rent and decided to go check it out. The landlord lived next door and as we got out of the car and we introduced ourselves, she looked at Antonio (who is Dominican) and asked if he was our taxi driver. I was embarrassed for her - because, really - does it matter? John was quick to say - no, Antonio is a great friend of ours, and she replied Oh, well most people become friends with their taxi drivers. In that moment, I knew that there was no way in hell that I was ever going to give this woman any money, let alone be subjected to her as a neighbor. I wanted to tell her off right there - say - hey, thanks for your time, but you've just offended a dear friend of mine - once as perhaps a stereotypical mistake, but the second time?? We're not going to rent from you - have a nice life. Instead, I went along with the little tour of her house and although she didn't say anything as offensive, she was just not likeable. What is WORSE was that I was so aware of my disdain, that I began overcompensating and being overly generous in my communications with her - almost being accomodating.

I really suffer over delivering communications with people - I become way too concerned with how the message will land, how the other person is going to feel, taking the time to stand in the other person's shoes. I either don't want to be confrontational, or I don't want to sound petty. Ultimately, I want to make sure the other person is taken care of, to the extent that my world is not taken care of.

It seems like those people (in the movies) who are thoughtfully listened to respond to problems with quotes or riddles. Perhaps I need to study my quotes or lines from the Bible or something. Maybe I'll start to speak like Yoda.

I suppose it would be appropriate to end with a quote:

Abraham Lincoln once said "It is better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to open one's mouth and remove all doubt."

Love to you,

1 comment:

Rowena said...

I have a feeling that you present yourself better than you think you do.