I Am Listening
There’s a sound in the distance that grows louder every day. Only I can hear it — my own dog whistle, perhaps. When I’m quiet it can be deafening and a sadness wafts over me.
It’s the sound of my inner weirdo screaming to be heard. It’s the sound of the old woman I’ll be one day begging me to listen. It feels like the sound of words unwritten, promises broken, moments unlived. It feels like the sound of shame and doubt and regret and fear.
“The more scared we are of a work or calling, the more sure we can be that we have to do it.” ~ Steven Pressfield, The War of Art
Like a bird I flit from list to list, from tweet to tweet, from chore to chore, from excuse to excuse, trying to avoid hearing that this not-so-solid ground is where I’m supposed to land – this ground into which I might sink, or at least have to dig into very deeply – this ground that might be excruciatingly difficult to navigate, leaving me vulnerable and alone.
That’s when I want the noise to stop – but she won’t stop. She has not stopped my whole life. Why? Because I’ve been wrong about her and she’s trying to tell me that. She’s not against me. She’s not ashamed of me. She is not hateful. She just wants me to trust her.
“Trust in what you love, continue to do it, and it will take you where you need to go.” ~ Natalie Goldberg, Writing Down the Bones
And now that I’ve truly begun to listen to her, I can hear the note of encouragement, strength and love in her rhythmic beckonings. The more I calm myself and stop straining to shut her out, the more clearly and sweetly the sound resonates in my soul.
And when I listen with my whole heart, I hear, not the sound of unwritten words, broken promises or unlived moments. Instead, I hear the sound of words written, promises kept and moments lived. My inner weirdo is actually rooting for me, and that old woman, well she thinks I’m the cat’s ass. I’m listening, I’m trusting that the ground is ready for my landing.
I know now what the sound is. It is the sound of my true voice – and it’s the one and only sound I need listen to. I’m all ears.