Friends, Romans, Countrymen
Usually I’m very chatty and keen to get a laugh or at least a smile out of people but at the moment I’m quiet and not able to fill in the silent gaps.
Listening used to be very hard for me. It was difficult to wait politely for the other person to finish so that my frantic efforts at being witty, entertaining or merely fascinating could continue. Yes, there's a pretty easy psychological study right there: the need for acceptance, to be liked, to be considered a success at something no matter how minor ('Oh, she's good at making small talk at barbecues.')
Writing is normally easy, too. It may not be literature or win me any awards, but sitting at the keyboard tapping away was less strenuous than playing the clown at parties and a hell of a lot more helpful. At the moment though, the words aren’t there.
Sapphire's only ten-and-a-half years old but immediately sensed that things weren't right and out of respect for her intelligence and perception LC and I felt that she deserved to be told. Not all the nitty gritties of the past but why I haven't been smiling as much lately and don't always feel like leaving the house. Why a sensible diet, running, working and applying some cognitive psychological techniques don't seem to be solving things right now. Why I'm struggling to understand that it's not anyone's fault - especially hers - that I feel this way.
She nods and likens my need to see a specialist to her recent blood test for whooping cough. "You can't fix everything on your own, Mum." She's grown tall enough this past year for her arms to almost encircle me; white musk, clean hair and the vitality of youth and trust filling the air. I nuzzle her cheek, still dazzled by the softness and her innocent unawareness of her own beauty.
She pats my hand. “I can’t imagine how hard it is Mum and I can already see, even now when you’re not feeling so good, how hard you try and it’s still nice to be with you.”
I cried in front of her then, and we hugged even tighter. We then spent the next half an hour lying on her bed, me listening to her talking about her plans for the school year and for renovating her room. The funny anecdotes she shared about last year’s classmates that made me laugh so hard a fart popped out which started her giggling in response. She’s brilliant company.
LC says that he loves me and doesn't want to contemplate a life without me. He's warm, strong and kind and urges me to talk. I respond by saying, "No, I want to hear you for a change." He spends time with Sapphire playing tennis, visiting the Queen Vic markets, cooking. He makes me coffees in the morning as a subtle way of helping me put my feet on the floor and get out of bed. He reaches for my hand and gives me impromptu hugs all the time.
I hear him.