A few months ago, I was talking with another mom whose baby is the same age as mine. We were talking about how long our labors were (hers even longer than mine), and she described how she was not going to let them “cut her”. In other words, she refused to have a c-section. I didn’t have the heart to tell her that I did let them “cut me.” But after the conversation, I just felt kind of sick to my stomach. I wish we all thought a lot more before we spoke, and I wish that we were all more aware of others. But unfortunately, in general, we’re not. I wish she knew that not all c-sections are bad. And some of us were not able to deliver our children. I needed a serious miracle in order to deliver my baby, and I’m so thankful that a doctor (a Christian available on a Sunday morning) was on call to deliver mine. Ryde and I wouldn’t have made it otherwise as I was beyond exhausted, and Ryde was not moving a hair. Would I choose another c-section? No, because the recovery for me has been very long and hard. But if I find myself in the situation of again not being able to deliver my baby, will I agree to another one, yes. So maybe I should have told the other mom my story. Maybe she would have then understood cases like mine and not referred to the situation as being “cut” open.

Lately, I’ve been realizing that every little thing I say gets taken in one way or another. We take for granted that people understand us. We think that things should be understood as they are. But I’m learning that everyone processes things through their own worldview. Assumptions are made very quickly. Ideas are formed that could be based on no truth at all, but the person walks away thinking they know the whole story. In most cases, we don’t know the whole story nor can we assume anything. So I’m re-thinking much of what I say. I’m stopping before speaking or not speaking at all. And in many ways, it’s good. But in other ways, it’s not so good.

Yesterday, I was telling a friend that I’ve felt more friendless since living back at “home” in Colorado than I did in the UK. And part of it is my fault; part of it is not. I have this very strong need for privacy. A pastor’s kid does not grow up with much privacy, and my reaction to that is to have this almost abnormal need for it. I don’t want people talking about me, don’t want them talking about my house, my son, my marriage, etc. Basically, I’m quite happy to mind my business while you mind yours. šŸ™‚ I don’t need to know what you ate for dinner, how much money you spent on this, if you get along with so-and-so, how your marriage is doing, etc. I care about my friends and want to know those things if and ONLY IF my friends want me to know. Otherwise, it’s not for me to know. Does that make sense?

So anyway, on my second year of living back in the US and back in Colorado, I’m finding that a.) a lot of what I say gets misconstrued or taken the wrong way, and b.) people still want to know my business and talk about it with other people. And I have a hard time with that. So as I’ve pondered on this, the Lord has shown me a few things. First, I need to watch what I say. If I desire privacy, then I need to give it. If I don’t want to be criticized, then I’d better make sure that I’m not criticizing. If I don’t want gossip in my house, then I’d better make sure that I’m not gossiping. Second, people are people. God chooses to love us regardless, and I think He kind of expects us to love like that as well. So I have to choose to not be offended or upset by gossip, but choose to love anyway. Third, it’s okay to want privacy, and it’s okay to keep some things in my life private. However, all things need to be done in moderation and balance. So I can’t be a hermit. I can’t be closed off. I still have to have an open heart and share with those who really are my friends and those who need to hear my thoughts or my experience on a matter.

And please don’t be offended by this post; this was not written to anyone in particular. It’s just me sharing my heart.

And lastly, I really enjoyed my first full day of being facebook free. Not that it will last forever, but I just need to be done with some of the clutter. You know what I mean?

2 thoughts on “think before speaking

  1. Mic, this is something I've struggled with my whole life but I truly believe that it is something I'm finally learning to have victory over. Not all the time but more often than not. I can't tell you how many times I've put my foot in my mouth. I really liked what you had to say in your 2nd paragraph because that is me to a T. I'm glad you understand me and are so gracious towards me:-) Far too often I have taken it for granted that people understand me only to learn later that they didn't and things have been misconstrued or blown out of proportion. Now I do everything I can to avoid any form of drama and strive to keep everything simple. Easier said than done, of course! And so, as a result, I have become somewhat of a hermit counting the number of friends I have on one hand. I am learning, like you, to really think before I speak or not speak at all because I'm so tired of kicking myself for saying something that doesn't sound how I really mean it. I have a problem with it all sounding perfect in my head but then it comes out wrong. I don't intentionally ever want to be insensitive but I have learned that I have been and I am very, very sorry for it. It never was in my heart to have it be like that. I've been all over the place with this. I used to be such a "people" person and then I went to being a "hermit" and now I'm somewhere in the middle but, to be honest, I lean more towards being the hermit:-) Anyway, good stuff my friend. You describe your thoughts and emotions so well. This encouraged me so thanks for that.

  2. Micah, thanks for sharing your heart again. I feel that your posts lately have really captured the essence of my heart lately as well. I really struggle with the whole privacy thing as well. When I do blog, I don't even share my blog with many people b/c of my need for privacy. (actually, if I start blogging again, I think I am going to go private) I found out how many hits my blog gets in a day and it is crazy. I really struggle with privacy on FB too. I could write a whole novel on those issues.

    I have recently been in a situation in my life that I haven't shared with many others. Out of necessity, I had to share it with a friend "not a best friend" but a friend. I all of a sudden found myself feeling judged by someone who didn't even know the whole story. I felt concerned that they were out there telling other friends that I actually feel closer to a slanted view of what was going on. I finally shared with one of those friends because I was worried that she would find out through the grapevine and be offended that I hadn't told her or make up her mind to after hearing an incomplete story. Much to my relief she hadn't heard and was very supportive and I felt relieved to have actually shared with her.

    I really struggle with the friendship thing. Over the last 3.5 years we have basically been in three different churches. One which we loved and loved the people in it but had to leave b/c of the pastor doing something illegal and just plain wrong. The other two because the churches fell apart. As a result we hadn't been rooted anywhere for quite some time. That has been really difficult and I haven't had a whole lot of friendship. I have also been through some of the roughest times in my life in the last three years and I have realized how important friendship is and how necessary it is to walk through tough times in our life and that true friends are really there to point us to God.

    Anyway, thanks for sharing your heart with me. Also, I know your life is really busy and so is mine, but I would love to see you sometime. I would be more than willing to meet you close to where you are or whatever. I really enjoyed the friendship that we had in the past.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *