|Dos Cruxes by J. Binford-Bell|
As I child I stuttered until the third grade and so learned to not open my mouth much. I did not speak up in class until my freshman year in college and then only if asked a direct question. I was known to get violently ill before oral book reports. I almost did not graduate college because I had not gotten up the guts to open my mouth in front of a group to give a speech.
Mother, the former cub reporter for the Kansas City Star, told me I could not write or spell and was dismal at grammar. So I drew pictures and fell in love with my first Kodak Instamatic camera. After all isn't a picture worth a thousand words? And I got positive reinforcement for pictures.
I might have been totally non-verbal except for Mr. Mealy in high school. He told me I could write. And that was echoed by several college teachers. And when I finally managed to deliver my first speech in that long put off college class I was immediately both enthralled and scared to death. And soon after I found out I had inherited (or learned) my mother's skill of stinging one liners.
So this 46 days of not posting status messages on Facebook has been an interesting mediation on my life. I have carried it over to the "real world" by not being the first to speak beyond "hello." BTW as a high school junior I once went for 30 days without speaking unless spoken to. Nobody, even my mother and father, noticed. And I went to a retreat once of four days where we all vowed silence except in morning and evening song.
I have become it seems since my head injury (after a period of not being able to communicate again - even back to the stutter) a blabber mouth. So much so I am often not even conscious of what I am saying or for that matter posting in the Ethernet. I am now a great deal more conscious of what I say or post. This is a good thing.
And I have gone back to trying to make my photographs speak for me. Not just pretty snaps of elk and deer.
|Be a Girl by J. Binford-Bell|
If you shut up it is amazing at what you can see even in the simplest of objects.
|The Creamer by J. Binford-Bell|
And I seem to still be more agile at making people look than I am at making them listen. The world seems so full of noise these days. Even an almost empty store has a couple people talking on cell phones to people not even in the venue. So close your mouth and open your eyes might be good for more than just me. And if you are not talking you can listen better. If only people were all saying something more meaningful.
"Choose your words wisely," Dad used to tell me to help me stop stuttering.