What I think

I had an interesting conversation with a friend at school the other day. "Let's be honest" she said, "What I want most is a husband and kids." I was taken back a little, because that's not the typical dream for most of the girls in graduate level education--at least, it's not the kind of thing that they are willing to admit. Her blunt response wasn't awkward though. I appreciated it.

Figuring out what I want is hard enough. Translating it into words and sharing it with somebody else. Well, that's a whole new ball game.

Quite frankly, I don't like telling people what I actually think. For example, it's a constant challenge for me to tell my bride that I love her. I do. Madly, wildly, uncontrollably. But telling her remains a daily challenge.

I'm quite happy to share some version of my thoughts(i.e. it's easy to tell her she's beautiful), but I almost never convey my actual feelings(I need her). I hold back. Resist. Refrain--especially when it's written, which is why I appreciate, and even envy, those who are able to thoughtfully convey their innermost desires. Exposed and easy prey, they articulate their actual feelings for the world to consider, to judge, to mock, and occasionally, to adore.

When we speak of past failures, it is easy to gloss over the low times. People who are failing don't usually come out and admit it; nor do they wear a stamp on their foreheads. They deny what is real and choose to view a miserable time or a big mistake as a something smaller, more manageable, and less consequential. My alcoholic friend "just does it because he likes it." And the cheater friend. Well, it was justified because you "needed more."

Physical pain is easy to acknowledge. Emotional pain is easy to hide. What I want is easy to feel, but it is hard to say. What I do is easy to share, but my hearts desires are hard to expose. Here's a toast to honesty, especially honesty in failure, which should not be mistaken for complaining. That's another animal altogether.

We are a planet of fake Supermans, running around in red capes and imagining that we can use our x-ray vision to get richer, smarter, and happier.

I want to thank you.... for being human. Special props go to you who have eloquently shared what you actually think.

Thanks friend from the other day. Your candor made my day. Maybe even my week. No matter how hard you try, it really isn't enough.

And other friend from the other other day, you don't have to be cheery and fun. You're sad, and you should be. You needn't wear a mask. This isn't a show. Our life is not a masquerade. Thanks for being sad when you needed to be sad. You remind me that it's ok to hurt, and it's ok to not be ok.

So not everybody in high school liked you, and you were rejected. I know it hurt. Thanks for saying what you really thought.

Maybe tomorrow, I'll be able to write on my own thoughts and my own failure. But you can be my superhero today.


posted by Josh M on 12:47 AM


Amber said...

Thanks, dear! I love hearing what you think. :)