I’m a talker; anyone who knows me knows that. Even as introverted as I am when I get around people I get loud. I have a naturally loud voice as it is but when I am around people I love to talk, hear stories and sometimes commiserate. Being silent isn’t a strong suit of mine.
I adore it sometimes though, especially when I’ve felt overwhelmed or over stimulated by my surrounding. As hard as it is to embrace silence sometimes I realize that I needed it more than I thought I did.
So when I pulled the silence card out of my topics jar I didn’t know what to think, how to write about silence when it’s so difficult for me to embrace it sometimes.
Going off the grid looks different depending on what I need at that moment. Usually it means taking a break from social media, spending more time writing and journaling and being a more attentive mom. Sometimes A takes a back seat when “I need to check the Twitter.” She’ll get mad at me when she sees that I have been on my phone for awhile and even say something (I give her props for that.)
I took a writing course last summer where we had a week of silence to meditate and reflect. Going internal can be a really good thing for me; when I allow it to be. I am not inundated with bad news, drunk twitter and conservative articles by scary Christians. I feel like I am able to process my day at a greater level when I don’t start the morning out by checking all my social media sites. As much as I love my coffee and twitter mornings I usually don’t have as peaceful of a day if I start out checking on everything.
Silence also means holding things back sometimes. I have realized over the last year that I don’t have to put everything out in the open. I am a pretty open person and I don’t typically hold things back. I have learned through my own process that even though I have no reservations about being honest; I don’t have to share every detail, every event or the hurts they caused.
I need silence in my life right now. My brain is constantly filled with chatter. There is my own chatter and that, which I take in by being on the phone all the time. I am over stimulated most of the time and all the noise gets extremely overwhelming. I try to set boundaries for myself to stay off my phone at certain times or days. It doesn’t typically help at times because I somehow always find a reason to pick up my phone and see what’s going on.
It’s a coping method for m. When I am absorbed in my groups or twitter or checking out other peoples Instagram accounts I don’t have to be absorbed in my own life and struggles (I do the same with TV) It’s easy enough for me to get distracted by other things.
But when I am distracted and not fully there I can’t be the person I want to be in my day to day, skin wearing life. I don’t play with Abigail as much, I tend to push my art aside and, my writing suffers. I need silence in my house too. The TV is always on, or there’s a little girl who sings and talks as much as mom. Silence hardly ever describes the atmosphere in my house.
There’s good news though. Abigail goes back to school next week and I am going to tighten things up at home. She’ll be gone all day and since I’m still not working I’ll have the day to just be with me. Silence can happen when I want it too and it won’t involve getting mad because I want to turn off the TV.
My plan is to only be on my phone when Abigail is at school. It’ll mean boundaries for myself and being diligent to stick them. I also know that doing this will help my relationship with Abigail because I won’t be as distracted.
I also know that a lot of wanting things to not be quiet is that when I am quiet allthingthings come up and I want to keep tuning them out. Continuing to work through the hurt will help.
Being silent is about more than just staying off of my phone. It’s also about going deeper within and allowing my heart to be opened to the quiet and not be scared of what might happen.
Silence can indeed be golden.
August 11, 2014 at 10:59 pm
I relate to so much of this. I was just writing last night about how stuck I am to screens and how pathetic it feels to need constant digital affirmation. Silence is hard to come by and I have to hunt it down like my last meal. This is a fantastic reminder of how our distractions lead us to disconnection. Thanks for sharing your heart with us.