I accidentally rolled through a stop sign this week, distracted by the cacophony of voices in my head. I can’t even recall what those voices were shouting about. Usually there are a chorus of naggers forging a long chain of things to be done, and at least one voice on a soap box waxing poetic about some atrocity or act of social lunacy. After rolling through the stop sign a man waggled his finger at me and gave me the evil neighborhood watch eye which stirred up a whirlpool of guilt and fear in my belly and birthed yet another voice in my head. Yikes.
That’s when I realized that I am often my own biggest distraction- often, not always. I reminded myself that the crazier life gets the more conscientious I need to be about managing my inner voices. And thus the inner dialogue continued. But something else happened, an incident which compelled me to dig out a notebook and pen from under the piles of our current household projects and put my thoughts on paper for public presentation. And when I had finished writing what needed to be shared, I continued to write in my head. I witnessed flashes of thought and caught myself mentally editing, a practice I try to discourage. Editing should be a tangible process. But the point is that while writing often serves a public purpose, it holds a more personal worth. And this week that worth made itself known to me.
I write to tame the unruly, subdue the wild, untangle the angry knots of thought that threaten to choke out reason. It unnerves me to angry tears when I am unable to articulate my beliefs or make my point known, when I lose an argument because the words are turned against me. But pen and paper give me the opportunity to unleash all my verbal beasts, to cull out the ineffective rash emotive creatures, and quell the others into reasonable order.
My visual expressions (and vocal expression) lag behind the written word- but I enjoy both processes. And so the art of controlling words became the inspiration for this ATC. It is the equivalent of a brief free-writing session- unedited and imperfect. But I believe the exercise retains value in itself.
May clarity be with you- Renee