Tuesday, March 27, 2012

relationship series: communication (a lesson learned at 12)

this week's relationship series is on communication. be sure to check out gina and morgan's posts today and link up below!
when i was twelve, i attended the dixie classic fair with my uncle and cousin. it was warm as we strolled the grounds and now i can't hear coolio's gansta paradise without thinking about the ferris wheels and cotton candy.

i approached a man in a big floppy hat, standing in front of an oversized microphone. step right up and i'll read your mind! think of a number between one and fifteen. i stood and thought. he guessed wrong (or did i change my mind halfway through? neither here nor there, i tell you.) i scanned the prizes and settled on a lovely print of a bunch of puppies in a row that hung on my closet wall for many a childhood year.

i relate this to you to explain one thing: people are very rarely good at reading minds. my opinions on psychics and the long island medium aside, i believe only the simplest emotions, like love and fear express themselves in their purest form through our eyes. other times, words must be attached to them. they must hang on our feelings and give them shape, meaning and truth.

and i know for sure, my husband isn't a mind reader, nor am i. my favorite scene in bridesmaids is when kristen wiig and rose byrne try to show their love for maya rudolph by giving her their best "friend face" expression. that kind of look rarely works on robert. he'll wonder, does that raised eyebrow mean you're hungry? are you mad at me? maybe you want to watch another episode of "my strange addiction"? tell me!

we have to speak. to communicate. to tell each other i love you and not expect our hand hold to always say if for us. to call for no reason. to stay up and speak into the darkness. to give voice to that gut emotion that will sit, latent if we don't.

because one of my greatest fears is i will get to the end of my life with all these unspoken words stored up inside. when someone is ready to listen now, relate now, converse now.

of course, there is one unspoken rule: fine means anything but fine. even a fair clown can tell you that.


S T E P H A N I E L E A N N said...

This topic is so good! I agree on what you said on love and fear. Something I am constantly working on in my relationship is not making assumptions that I already know. We've been working hard at it and have even been able to open up on a more intimate level just by conversing in this way. I loved reading your thoughts on this, I'll link up a recent She Says/He Says we did a while back on communication during frequent business travels...have a great day!

Melissa Pitz said...

I love this post! This is definitely hard for me to remember, I always think that people should just KNOW how I'm feeling by the way I act...that I shouldn't have to spell it out for them. However, that's not the case! Thanks for the reminder, and some "future husband" advice. I'm loving this series.

ruthy ann said...

Ironically, my husband is the better communicator in our relationship...he has shown me grace as I've gotten better and saying out loud my feelings instead of running away from them.

Tiffany said...

Love this--especially the line about clowns knowing that "fine" doesn't mean fine.


Kira said...

I agree, I make all kinds of faces that my husband doesn't understand. I have to communicate well or he will often think I am mad at him even if what my face really meant was "that is silly" or "I'm annoyed by that other person over there".

ginanorma said...

haha cute ending!

I like your twist and story on this, really helpful, good way to put it, I know it's something my husband has said before...and I've said it to him, so yes, let's speak up! We aren't mind readers like the guy at the carnival, love that courtney, I will miss this series together, thanks for teaming up XO

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