Recently I informed my husband my spiritual gift was talking…. I don’t think he was impressed. A good thinker, he can speak and say in a few short sentences something profound deep for every ten paragraphs I blabber about.
My mother told me I started talking at age one and I haven’t stopped yet.
I was born a Chatty Cathy, the decades-old doll that only needed a little girl to pull the string for the blonde-headed toy to say a sentence. Pull, talk, pull, talk─ ad nauseam. (I can only imagine how many accidental chord malfunctions the Cathies had several days after Christmas when annoyed older brothers weary of her voice, slyly slipped underneath the Christmas tree to cut the doll’s pull string. Even when getting married the pastor put his finger to his lips to keep me from whispering during the service!
When I approached the empty nest era, I realize I had an abundance of words and no outlet. It came to a head after hanging out with two friends for our monthly get-together. Several lattes later after catching up with our lives, I headed home, reflecting on how I had hogged the entire conversation. What a bore, I’ve become, I thought.
I called both of them and apologized for being a “showboat”. My sweet friends laughed and said they loved my stories. That’s all I needed. Fueled by peer approval, I decided I needed a larger audience to share my stories.
Fast forward a few months later, I found myself on a train headed towards Chicago for one of my first writing conferences. My friends encouraging me with my stories fueled my desire to share my words in a larger audience.
Fourteen years, two books, and several hundred newspaper, magazine articles later I’m still pumping out words, not to an audience but readers.
The way I figure it, God gives me only a certain allotment of words and then I die. I’m trying to spread them out so I will linger a little longer. And in the interim I’m working on being a good listener. It takes both a speaker and a listener to have a great conversation.
I hope I can have many conversations with you, my wonderful readers. And, if you find me blabbing too much, just wiggle your ears to remind me it takes a listener and a talker to hold a conversation.