I’ve been staring at this screen for a while now. Looking at it, looking out the window over the pasture at my right. Back at the screen.
It’s fear. Fear of saying the wrong thing. Of making someone else so angry that they lay me flat with their words. Fear of becoming silent and not saying anything at all and, thus, not challenging myself, not challenging someone who might pick up my tiny words and consider them in their lives.
It’s prickly, this. This place between shouting and silence.
But I choose again today, as I do every day, even when I’m wrong, even when I have much to learn, even when I might be – but probably am not – right and still don’t know how to put words to all that I believe or maybe even know.
Still, I write because I believe that trying to speak is better than silence caused by fear. Because the silences of fear have kept millions gagged, their voices choked behind politics and economics and the stiff boot of people (like me).
And still, I write. Because more silence caused by the fear of anger or the fear of ignorance or the fear of looking bad is not the wide open silence that we need. It is, instead, a gag.
But I write to listen, too. To show – imperfectly – that I’m here. Ears open. Hands of defense down.
My way of being in the world is one of words. To give them out but equally to take them in.
The space we need to hear one another – that I’m not sure how to find, to build, to step inside. to stand beside. But I’m looking. With all I have.