Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Listen to This Story

Vernal Pond in PA
Today, I had time to listen to different folks tell me a story.

I ask a neighbor to tell me the story about how she moved from one county to another.

I ask a complete stranger to tell me the story of how she transferred from one college to another.

Both women said, "It's a long story."

I said, "I have time."

I decide I want to have the time in my life to listen to long stories.

I'm teaching memoir writing this month for the college seniors. They have incredible and beautiful stories deep inside that nobody has yet asked them to tell.

I wonder how many people we encounter each day who have incredible and beautiful stories deep inside.

They are in there, hidden away like a secret vernal pond.

Living with flair means I encourage others to tell the story inside of them.  It's been an amazing day because I've lived the adventure of listening.

And here's the picture of me listening to the sound of snow falling on the vernal pond.  Thank you, Jennifer, for being part of my story.


(photo taken today by Jennifer Kelly and her fancy phone)
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Journal:  What if I asked this person to tell me his or her story?

2 comments:

Lyn said...

As a counsellor, listening deeply to people's stories is at the heart of what I do. So often people say to me "I've never told this to anyone". Whilst receiving such treasures is my special privilege, I also hear the cry of people's deep isolation. The world would be a better place, if more would take time to listen to the stories of people's hearts. Thankyou for your words.

jenny_o said...

Everyone, I think, likes to tell about themselves. It's a gift to allow them to do that, instead of being bent on telling our OWN story.

Whenever I manage to remember that, it is very rewarding.