I feel trampled down.
As if a horde of horses
just ran me over.
But barely living.
All I want is to just close my eyes.
But I can’t.
As if my eyelids can’t close
while my heart is racing.
The string connecting my heart
and my lids is too wound up.
My heart cannot be caged.
When it wants to be free,
there’s no stopping it.
I want to scream!
Scream out in rage.
My nerves are shot.
Shot from keeping it all in.
They’re like a rope being pulled on –
At some point, it will break.
At that point fury will be released.
Consequences might be fatal.
I’ve kept my mouth shut.
Took it all in silence.
But I’m not sure how much longer
I can go on like this.
Everything offends you.
There’s nothing I can say
or do, anymore.
What about what offends me?
^An original piece by me. Penned September 21st, 2017. A commentary to today’s blog post.
Whether you follow politics or not, chances are that this past week you have heard about the President of the United States of American calling the Supreme Leader of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea a “Rocket Man”. Then, the latter one called the former one a “dotard”. A portion of the public had a fit because of the name calling. At the meeting of the United Nations, Donald Trump said the USA would be forced to “totally destroy” North Korea, should they pose an imminent threat to any of the allied countries. Again, the public was in uproar because such a threat was made. Should we not care about defending ourselves? Is that such a bad thing to not want to get wiped out by the enemy? Oh, but it is the words he used that matter, you say. Really? When niceties do not work, sometimes you are plainly left with bluntness.
In today’s word, we seem to value a fake smile more than an open warning. That is kind of surprising to me, because if one tells me they will do something, that gives me a better chance to prepare myself. With a fake smile, I am not sure of how to proceed, leaving myself open to any threats. Choosing to close our ears can lead to devastating results. Why is it that words offend us so badly? Why is it that it is the spoken word that can cut us to the core? I guess words are the greatest fear to those that have no concept of a potential physical harm. The words of a loved one can definitely hurt us, but why do we allow words of a stranger to cut us so deeply?
Personally, I find it increasingly difficult to speak to anyone who is not my close friend and/ or a trusted family member. Because I value honesty in others, I try to be honest to them. Often times, in the interest of time, I say before I think. It has been getting me into a bit of trouble lately. Moreover, my mouth works slower than my brain, which leads to various shortcuts. Instead of me telling you exactly what and how my brain just analyzed things, I will tell you what it arrived at. You see, I understand that that can lead to some confusion. Those who know me, know my thought patterns, so to them, I rarely have to explain why I said what I said. Admittedly, I sometimes forget that not everyone understands me. However, I do not expect a stranger to read my thoughts. What I DO expect a stranger to do is ASK me for an explanation. Not get offended and defensive and call me names, but calmly ask me for the reasoning behind my thoughts, without judging me first. I cannot promise you that you will like my explanation. I cannot promise you that my explanation will not offend you even more. But what I CAN promise you is that we can have a civil debate; an exchange of arguments without getting butt-hurt. People who are open to other ideas welcome discourse. Those who are afraid of other people’s words are not open to hear other people’s points of view. Where does this lead us???
On the professional website of LinkedIn, I came across an article in which the author lists the “no-no” phrases for the workplace. While some are rather obvious, like “I hate my job”, some are not, ex.: “No problem.” Feel free to take a look at the explanations as to why those phrases should not be used; the article is quite interesting. Are you maybe guilty of using some of them, without realizing the repercussions they might have on your career? Scanning through the comments below that article, I saw a lot of people judging others based on what they say. While I am a firm believer in sticking to one’s word and being held accountable for one’s words, I would like to point out that we are failing at seeing the bigger picture. When have we become so vulnerable to a seemingly innocent word or phrase? Why do we choose to see the worst in people? Why do we not give them a chance to explain themselves? Why do we not try to understand their meaning behind their words? When I ask for something and someone says: “No problem”, I assume things will get done. That is about as far as my interpretation goes. I do not think that this person wanted me to think that my request was an actual problem. You see? Confusing. Silly. Such analysis would only stir the pot, leading me to confront that person. They would probably swear that that was not their intention, but the bad blood would already be between us. Time wasted. Emotions hurt. Enemies made.
People are paying such close attention to some words (see: above examples), but are completely ignoring the misuse of others. Some words are just hip and do not necessarily mean what they meant a couple of decades ago. I enjoyed reading a letter in the Colorado Springs Independent paper. Stress for some is not the same as for others. The word “literally” is used in every other sentence by a teenager. If a soldier sent a message from the WWI lines saying: “I literally died after seeing it happen”, he would be presumed dead.
I would like to end this post by asking you some questions. Feel free to answer them in the comment section below, or in the privacy of your own head.
Do you take words at face value?
Do you look for a second meaning?
Do you project your own thoughts onto other people’s words?
What are the real intentions of the speaker?
Think about those above asked questions next time you start feeling offended by something someone says.