I write, a lot. I proofread, perhaps not as much as I should, but enough that if I don’t like the way a sentence flows, or the words I chose, I can change them…backspace and delete are keys often touched by my right middle finger and pinky. Sadly, I talk, a lot, and once the words come out of my mouth, there they are, forever. Once they are listened to, they can’t be un-heard. I have no option to backspace, delete, or even escape once I speak and when I want to take back the words I have said, I can’t. It’s sometimes like the filter in my brain gets clogged and the words go right from my mind to my mouth. I’m so fond of referencing the Jewel lyric, “in the end only kindness matters,” but alas, I often don’t walk the walk, or talk the talk.
When I am worried or frustrated or uneasy, I find I say things that, not necessarily I don’t mean, but rather which really don’t need to be said, and I don’t know why. I seldom or maybe never, wish to be mean, but when I think about things I have often uttered in these states of worry, frustration, and unease, I know that the words were many things, and kind wasn’t one of them.
Maya Angelou wrote, “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” She also wrote that one should “be a rainbow in someone else’s cloud,” and I’m pretty sure she might also suggest that whatever I do, don’t be unkind. My worry, frustration, and unease pales in comparison to many I know, and since real life is not a computer keyboard and sadly lacks a backspace, delete, or escape button, I have nothing to do, but to do better.