Monday, February 6, 2017

Silence: My love/hate relationship

Being Silent, it's such a powerful thing. Everyone uses it, some more then others.

Couples use it in arguments
Teachers use it when they want students to think about a topic or as a discipline method
Therapist use silence in their sessions to help patients
We use it in conversations, especially when we are the sounding board
Many use it in meditation
Parents use it as a punishment at times (for some reason though my kids never are silent!)

I have a love/hate relationship with silence.

When I am with friends I am usually the one who listens to the conversations. I love listening to my friends, whether they are telling me joys or troubles, I like to listen. Now a days people don't listen as much, so I love listening to my friends, most of the time they need it.

At parties and gatherings I like to sit back and listen to conversations. I learn so much listening to conversations. Give me 10 minutes in the middle of a group of people and I can tell you so much about them. I love it!

Kid's birthday parties! Those are no where near silent! I love it though. I love the kids running around and screaming with each other. I love the laughter and the tiny silly conversations. Those parties may be loud but they are so fun! The memories created, the friendships being formed, so much fun!

My Friday nights most weeks (sometimes Saturday depending on my husbands schedule) I spend the evenings in my room, watching mindless tv and sometimes reading. I enjoy the silence, after a week of the kids being loud running through my house, from the meetings and the phone calls. I look forward every week to this time of silence in my life (I'm sure most Introverts know exactly what this is like)

When my kids were younger, the youngest 2 stayed home with me. During those years I also babysat friends kids on and off throughout the years. Needless to say my house was loud, all the time, and I longed for silence! Even nap time wasn't silent, one of the many kids was always up.

Over the years, things have changed, my kids are older and now in school full time, I drop them off in the morning and come home to an empty quiet house. Most days I have a ton of work to do. If I'm not in the sewing room working, I am doing house chores or out running errands. But there are some days when the house is so silent and I feel so lonely. At those moments I long for the days when my house was so loud, and I couldn't hide from the noise.

One of my SIL's is a lot like me. She's not very outgoing and she likes her alone time. She loves to run, and does so everyday, in silence. When we are together we can sit in a room forever never once saying a word, never uncomfortable, just silent and happy. Sometimes I long for that time. Often when you are silent with someone in a room, they are uncomfortable, make mindless conversation because they can't stand the silence. I can learn more from my SIL in our time of silence then I can in a mindless conversation.

The power of silence is amazing. Whether it brings you peace, someone in your life comfort or discomfort, silence is powerful.
Often times I wonder though, for those who are uncomfortable in silence, why? What is so uncomfortable about no noise that makes you babble? What scares you about just being? What's the advantage of talking over a friend in a conversation, or babbling about nothing to cut the silence? Wouldn't you get so much more from embracing the quiet times in your life then forcing the conversation?

One of my most favorite things to do, when the house is silent, is to sit in prayer. I sit on the floor in the middle of my room with my eyes closed and pray. I pray for those in need, I pray for my blessings, I pray for my kids and husband, I pray for my struggles and sometimes I just sit, waiting for Him to speak to me. This by far is one of my most favorite ways to use silence. It soothes my soul, clears my heart and brings me close to God, deepening my faith.

I hope you are not uncomfortable in silence, at least not all the time. I hope you take the time to listen to friends, including God. Silence is powerful, enjoy it, crave it and look forward to those silent moments in your life (along with the fun loud ones!)

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