After a few months of writer’s block, I finally sat down and forced my pen to work. I won’t spoil it for you with a premise other than allowing you the title itself. Enjoy.
A Conversational Dilemma
I don’t know how to communicate.
Of the social obligation to validate each other’s charades, I am without resolve.
Sometimes, I’m asked a terrifying question:
“How are you?”
Indignant, if you must know!
Indignant that you might not actually want to know what I plan to say or why I will say it,
Indignant that your question at its roots will merit an answer I do not care to part with,
Indignant that you’ve now placed the burden of choosing the scale of sincerity upon me,
And indignant because you’ve forced me to confront the me I disdain, for under the weight of my own anxieties, I crumble and answer poorly,
Poorly in scope, in depth, and in overall honesty.
As if the effect of the air gusts on the temperature within the stunted bubble of my surroundings is the only thing worthy of discussion,
I find a way to dread whatever season the world has mustered at the moment;
And after a wise-crack about fatigue to let my companion do little more than relate and concur, I turn towards my next doomed interaction.
Yet I should stay, should I not?
Of this I am uncertain, my internal compass loves the art of spinning...
I cannot amend that my acquaintance avoided asking pointedly how I’m REALLY doing, and who could blame them for believing ‘to pry’ means ‘to offend’ and risk unearthing a source of controversy or sorrow?
Nevertheless, I can absolutely morph the trajectory of this correspondence into something far more fruitful.
That instead of rushing through some barrage of half-truths about my family’s interactions over the holidays and how that didn’t affect me in the slightest,
I should perhaps describe the utter loneliness I’ve felt in crowded rooms,
Or the frustration that ex-amount of days is just that after a heartbreak, and though I wish to look to my next endeavor, I cannot help but count the hours since my last one,
Or my more-than-occasional fear that my faith in God and the very essence of my existence could be at the very least misguided and at the very worst a total farce,
Or surprisingly how I here and there fervently desire an amazing woman of faith to grab me by the shoulders and insist I choose her as she explains how she loves me despite the astonishing number of vices I have at my disposal.
I should let them get to know me,
The real me who gets strangely excited at the thought of organizing and puts his mind to things he’ll never master.
I should show them the me who finds attraction quickly and healthy severance seldom, who reflects upon his trials as moments buzzing with potential growth, who burns the candle at as many ends as possible, and who tries his very best to have his friends well-outnumber his opponents.
However, as I begin defogging my heart’s windows, I’m stricken with worry.
The decrease in emotional proximity leaves me vulnerable.
I’m scared that they might remember how best to wound me, moreso that they could easily follow through, scared ever the more that the building blocks of my life will pass from one ear to the next without stimulating the warmth of a fireplace long-neglected.
But most of all, I’m frightened that they’ll remember me for all the right reasons, and I’ll have no excuse to selfishly erase from my memory (or fail to catalog at the outset) their own passions and struggles.
Before I’ve passed the reflective point of no return, ever a slave to my own desires and rife with foreboding and issues of trust, I address my newfound pseudo-friend with the best my culture of mediocrity has to offer:
“But enough about me, how are you?”
I think by avoiding genuine conversations in life, we can avoid a certain amount of heartache. Yet the loss of meaningful connections is I believe much more staggering and detrimental. We will experience heartache in life regardless, might as well go through life with enough people to piece you back together. In essence, use caution with sensitive information and people you feel unsafe around, but don’t be afraid to put yourself out there, you might be pleasantly surprised you did!
“Better is open rebuke than hidden love. Wounds from a friend can be trusted, but an enemy multiplies kisses.”
Thanks for reading and indulging in my odd thought patterns. Lord bless!