It’s a complete gift — to listen to someone. Anyone — everyone needs to be listened to.
I find myself listening a lot more these days. My brain has slowed some, perhaps, I find I’m not forming a response halfway through the story as I used to do when I was younger. I’m waiting for the punchline — hearing the intonations — leaning into the nuances — listening.
I used to just hear. It’s a completely different experience. When you ‘hear’ — you aren’t engaged in the process — you are a bystander to the conversation — you are not absorbing the message.
But when you listen — you are paying attention to the plot. It isn’t just sound vibrations coming through the air at you. You have been transported to the very same stage the speaker is on. You are witnessing the very same events of their telling.
You are present. With them. At that moment.
Listening is a huge connection to make with another being. These days I listen to just about everyone/thing.
I listen when walking in Nature — My Old Friends The Trees speak clearer to me, The Ocean sings me lullabies, and Rainstorms play soft music.
I listen to my children — who are not children. They have grown into women — into My Friends. They bless me with their wisdom and love. I marvel at all the thousands of conversations — the millions of words which must have passed between us in their lifetimes.
I listen to my granddaughters. Seriously so. Eye to eye — focused and attentive. So they know their words carry weight, they are important words even though their voices might still be small. I repeat them back to them to ensure I have them right and to keep them engaged and let them know their thoughts landed in fertile soil.
I listen to those Humans closest to me — friends and family. The joy and the sorrows they share are the proof of our bond. Their words woven with trust and love into tales they share. Tears and laughter — lives touched — held together — blessings beyond the words.
I listen to my patients. Most of the time this is all I can do for them. I have no magic words to give back to them. I can only receive that which they need to share with grace. I can be there and listen to their fears, their anger, their anguish, their relief, their gratitude, their pain. Until they have finished saying their peace.
Being present with another — listening — is a Gift we could all use of late. Because once we start listening — really listening — that’s when we begin to see we are all The Same. The Same People. The Same Creatures. The Same Planet. The Same.