So went my innocent response to my friend, Tony, this afternoon. He was excited about progress on a new endeavor and in his excitement repeated a large portion of a prior conversation. I mentioned as much and then heard a voice in my head, “Killjoy!” Tony was excited, and that should have canceled out my frustration at the black void where our twenty minute conversation had resided just two days before.
It’s not in my nature to be a killjoy. I love the connection of sharing news, good or bad, with those close to me, and I’m sure to have been guilty of repeating myself. Yet those close to me patiently listen to the retelling, or in my case, re-ranting of the topic du jour, nodding when appropriate, murmuring their interest. Allowing my excitement to add full flavor to the retelling.
Having been in a relationship for many years with someone who could not express or share excitement, perhaps a little of that blase attitude had rubbed off? How many times have I wanted to leap from the rafters with excitement only to be met with tepid water splashed in my face? It’s a leaden feeling in your gut that stifles any further joy on the subject. Repetition only shows how important the subject at hand is to the speaker, or a case of short term memory loss.
Having caught myself puncturing Tony’s story, I said in all seriousness, “You have the right to repeat yourself”. To which he responded, “THAT’s good! You have to write that down.”
The truth is, he sees much more in me than I do. He sees a quick witted, clever, sarcastic woman that tends swear like a British sailor, and has a frequent habit of ‘getting her rant on’. He sees these random one liners I toss in to our conversations, and quickly forget, as little gems to mine. He reminds me to write them down – which I rarely do, tossing them aside as I do his repeated suggestions to write.
He could have let his ego deflate with my lack of enthusiasm at today’s retelling, in the same way that he could stop repeating his conviction that I should write. Instead, he is willing to repeat himself in an effort to illuminate an aspect of myself that has yet to be tapped, despite my profound deafness on the subject.
The truth is that this blog, in its entirety, is due to his patient, repetitive arguments that I should write. These written exercises in expression are me, listening.