Can you sit in a room and say nothing and be comfortable. I can. I can think of many times in which my father, grandfather and I have shared extended periods of silence. There hasn’t been anything of consequence to say and there was nothing uncomfortable with sharing the moment.
In a world of clutter and chaos silence is a gift that we all too often miss out on. And some people simply cannot handle it. I can be very gregarious, quite verbose. I can be the life of the party and then I can go the other direction. Many years ago I was told by a lady who was no longer interested in sharing time with me that I can suck the energy out of the room by merely walking in.
As if I had that power. Although in that particular case I suppose that I did because she gave it to me, but that is a topic for a different time. What her biggest issue at that time was that I could simply shut down and listen without responding.
Shut down may be too extreme. I heard everything that was said and I would react with a nod or twinkle of my eye. But sometimes there is no point in vocally responding to everything that is said. If you can stop and just listen you can get in touch with yourself and the world around you.
And I think that scares some people. I have said it many times and I’ll say it again. I can look in the mirror of my soul and smile back at the light and the darkness that resides in there. I am comfortable with who I am because I have taken time to learn who that is. And I accept that man is continually evolving. If you knew me at 18 and expect to find that 18 year-old still living here, he is gone.
Parts of him remain, bits and pieces of flotsam and jetsam float to the surface and he appears. Echoes of who I was remain as do the 5 and 10 year-old boy and the 25 year-old man I once was. I don’t know who I am going to become and I don’t mind. I only know that I have an oar in the water and that I am steering the boat through the storm.
Now provided I manage not to turn a three hour tour into a shipwreck I’ll be ok. OTOH, if I do manage to wreck the boat I wonder who my professor and Mary-Anne will be. 😉