By Kenneth Justice
~Have you ever felt like someone wasn’t listening to you? Have you ever felt whenever you’re away from a loved one or a friend that they don’t spend even one minute of their life thinking about you?
Last week I shared an example of standing outside of The White House and feeling entirely disconnected from what was going on in the inside. It’s only natural that many of us feel that our leaders don’t listen to us or don’t give a damn about what is happening outside of their little political world…after all, Governments have become so big they can’t be responsible with paying attention to all of us……or can they?
To be honest with you, I often feel a bit overwhelmed in my little blogging world here. If my Website was the only aspect of my life I had to think about, then I would have a lot more time to devote to it….unfortunately I have to work a real job to pay the bills. There are so many up sides of blogging but the down sides are that it takes a lot of time.
I’ve read posts by a few bloggers recently who are all either stepping away from their blogs entirely or dramatically reducing the amount of time and energy they put into the blog. I can totally understand what drives good bloggers….away from blogging; it takes a lot of work. Because I developed a routine many years ago of waking up early in the morning it’s been the only way I’ve been able to stay relatively current and up-to-date with my blog. Nonetheless, because of the busyness of life I often feel a tad bit embarrassed when I only have enough time to respond to comments with two word statements;
—) ‘great point’
—) ‘good comment’
—) ‘I agree’
—) ‘That’s insightful’
I mean c’mon here….am I some kind of brain-dead bed-ridden carrot stick that I can’t respond to each of my readers with more than three words? But isn’t that how life is so much of the time; there just isn’t enough time in the day to get everything done that we want to accomplish.
One of the people who made the biggest impact was an incredible listener. He was a retired school psychologist and he and I had coffee two Saturday’s a month for seventeen years…right up until he died last year. Each Saturday that we sat together he had this keen ability to make me feel as though his entire mental faculties were focused on me…..as though he had nothing else on his mind whatsoever.
But even more impressive than his ability to listen was the time and energy he put into our friendship. Though he was 50 years older than I, rarely a month would go by during those seventeen years that he didn’t drop me a letter via snail mail, call me on the telephone, or stop by my house……despite the fact that he would see me at coffee every other Saturday!
For the past six months I’ve been feeling this massive void in my life….and for the longest time I couldn’t figure out what it was…..and then it hit me; this friend, the person with whom I was closer to than any other person I’ve ever known…..has been dead for nearly two years.
—) There’s been no snail-mail letter
—) There’s been no periodic phone call
—) There’s been no casual drop-by-my house
But, this post isn’t about grief and it’s not a pity party for The Culture Monk…..it’s about listening and when we realize that someone isn’t listening to us…….it can really hurt.
—) When our parents don’t give us the attention we need as children it can hurt
—) When our loved ones don’t truly listen to us it can hurt
—) When our bosses ignore what we have to say it can hurt
—) When our political leaders don’t give a damn about our pleas it can make us angry
So having said all that I realize how important it is to listen……and I am listening. I read all the comments and all of the emails that are sent to me…..even though I can’t always respond I try bloody hard to reply …..And I’m always listening. Just like the man who gave me so much of his life all the way up until his last breath; I want to do the same for the people I care about.
I only wish we could all sit down and have a cup of coffee together!
Categories: Culture & Society