“When words become unclear, I shall focus with photographs. When images become inadequate, I shall be content with silence.” ― Ansel Adams
I’ve always had something to say, an opinion to express, or an argument to make. My family encouraged vocal discourse; my father’s family fostered an environment where dry, sarcastic humour was used to drive home a point; my mother’s family encouraged debate – about everything: political opinion, religious dogma, the traffic, the path of the ants on the wall, you name it, my mother’s family would happily discuss and argue about it. So naturally, I talked. A lot. It was the only logical development in my communication progression. I had to fight to be heard, so I learned how to talk.
But lately, I’ve found that quietness is good too. That thinking and not necessarily talking about the thoughts that run through your head is also a good thing. I’ve learned that sometimes chatter is just a filler. Sometimes companionable silence is a sign of true acceptance and belonging. You don’t always have to say things to be understood.
Of course, the caveat to that is that one has to talk, so that feelings can be understood and there won’t be any misunderstandings. There is that old maxim that says “actions speak louder than words.” This is true. I am also of the persuasion that things that can be said must be said. It’s never better left unsaid.