Saturday, September 24, 2011

S- was a cutter

Journal for Christa—
S— was a cutter. Now at that time, we didn’t even know what that was. There were adults who tried to help her. But, I think, even they were over their heads. It might have been nice if one of them would have tried to explain to us. But, they didn’t. When she started stealing, the college had little recourse but to send her back home. I have wondered what we all sent her back to. Whatever it was, she didn’t stay long. She was soon back in town and shortly thereafter married. I hope that things eventually worked out well for her.
How little I used to know, and how little I realized it. I think I started realizing how little I knew after I had kids. From potty training to driving, as each year passed, I felt like I knew less and less.
There is one thing, though, that I am learning—and that’s to listen. I listen best to my grandchildren. Whether it’s a conversation over “Loot Loops” or 3-year-old instruction on how much Kool-aid is “okay” to drink with popcorn on movie night or watching the swans gently float beneath a bridge in Stratford-upon-Avon, it’s easy for me to linger and listen. I wish I’d learned to listen earlier. I wish I listened more often.
If I had listened years ago, what would I have heard? If I listen now, what will I hear?

I think I learned to hear when I learned I didn’t know. 

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