Over the past couple of years, I have learned a lot in the experience of silence. It just sits there. Sometimes the lack of noise, words, or expression can fill a whole room. It isn’t quiet. That’s a different kind of silence. Quiet is when you are reading a book or watching birds. Silence can feel loud and overwhelming. You sometimes become desperate to fill that deafness with words or actions. When will someone say something? When will they act? When, when, when?
That silence says something. Are you paying attention to that emptiness? Are you watching that inaction? Because that is what also fills the space, and sometimes you march right into it, over it, and muck it all up with your own words.
Patience to wait out that silence is difficult. Will it get filled? Will someone act? Or will all the buildup of energy and investment just lay in a heap? I imagine a pile of worn out thoughts and effort lying on the side of the road. Eventually, it is scooped up and thrown in the back of a trash compactor… Silence can also make waste of very good things if not tended to.
I need to pay more attention to that silence because it is saying so much about a situation or an interaction. I hear it saying, “Just watch, don’t press. Just wait, it will reveal itself, and if it doesn’t? Well, that speaks volumes too.”