I’m not sure if I’ve disclosed this before, but I keep a running list of topic ideas for my blog, just to always make sure I’m being present in life, but honest and transparent in the execution of sharing my life with you all. What this means is that since March 2018, when I began planning for my blog, I’ve regularly updated a list in my Notes app where I will mark off the topics I’ve written about and keep in mind those I haven’t.
Today’s topic came to me over a year and a half ago, and I’m just now feeling led to write about it. I find it funny that the week I’d decided to take a break from social media was the week my soul finally nudged me with this topic. What that means is that it’s just us here. Only those of you who come across this blog on your own or have joined the email list will know this post exists for at least another month or so until I re-join social media and update everyone.
It feels more intimate and secretive, but not in a bad way. In a, “It’s just us and so we can say what we want,” kind of way. I know what I want to say.
No, really. Shut your mouth. I say this so kindly, but just stop talking. Be quiet.
Have you stopped being outraged yet? Okay, I’ll continue now.
One of the most pressing reasons I decided to remove myself from social media at the moment is because it’s so important for us to learn and remember how to be quiet. And how rewarding that silence can be. We live in a society that makes us believe that our every thought and feeling deserves to be said at the speed of our fingertips, and that because we thought it and said it, there’s no further discussion to be had. I said what I said, don’t @ me about it.
I am as guilty of this as the next person. There was a time I engaged with social media solely to make others feel bad for not knowing as much as me. For not being as ~woke~, or as genuinely understanding of disenfranchised minority groups, or not knowing which politician is the best. I reveled in being told I was right, and you couldn’t begin to tell me I was wrong.
Now, there are things that are simply inexcusable and frankly, unforgiveable for me, even now. Racism, misogyny, homophobia, slurs, and commodifying blackness or black bodies are topics where once someone shows themselves, I believe them the first time, and will cut off contact ASAP. I don’t even try to engage with those people anymore, I simply unfriend or block and move on.
Realizing it is not my ministry or cross to bear to teach everyone or be the most knowledgeable person in the room forced me to remember there is a beauty and inescapable bliss in the boat of silence and keeping my mouth shut.
I don’t have to know it all, I just have to know I’m doing enough. I don’t have to talk over others or explain myself or try to get people to see things my way, I just have to remember that people move at their own pace and I don’t have to hand-hold them through that. I can continue on with the work I’ve been assigned in this life without taking responsibility for others in such a way that it blocks my desire to do what I have to do.
I can write freely on this blog and know that I am speaking my truth without having to make others feel like my truth is the truth and so they must agree. No, you don’t have to tell me you agree with anything I write here. I know that for the most part, my blog resonates the most with the people who never say anything at all.
Being silent is such a treat. You can give this to yourself for free and reap the benefits of holding your tongue for many years to come. Stop trying to be understood and simply be.