By nature I am a talker. I love to talk. Now I have two girls who love to talk and my husband who loves to talk, I know most people think my husband is a quiet kind of guy - but I can assure you he is not. Sometimes they all talk to me at once. So there has been some frustration in our house. Everyone has something to say to me at the same time. I try to step back and let them talk, but I realize that I am not really listening to what they are saying I was just waiting for them to finish so I could talk. I noticed this impatience of my family too. When they are asked to wait their turn they make a noise - the sound one makes when they can barely hold their words in while someone else is speaking, they look like they are about to burst all the while the only thing they can think about is what they want to say. This situation is not unique - I came from a family of talkers and I have sat in enough business meetings. Listening doesn't come naturally to me - it is an art that I am ready to learn. They may be telling me all about the wild rabbit in the backyard, but later when they need to talk but really need someone to just listen - I want to know how. I want to be approachable. I want to be in the moment with them. I want to listen more and speak less. I have a note card that I hang where I can see it everyday and it says "Close your mouth and open your heart." I feel this is the best gift that I can teach my family. I want to hear about the wild rabbit in our back yard - even if it is the thousandth time. I must remember it is a blessing to have my children and husband to share their thoughts with me.
No more um-humming them. I am listening
or at least trying.