Understanding

::taps mic::

Is this thing on?

I haven’t written here in over a year and while I consider this my “professional” blog, I know that some of what I post is more personal than professional. As a writer, the lines are blurred for me. I’m not about to say that everything I create comes from my life, but inspiration comes from many sources and while I’m traveling around the universe on this big blue sphere, I can’t help but to write about what happens to me. Or what I do to happen to the universe.

I’m about to embark on my final year of grad school and many things have changed since I got here. I’m not going to put it all out there, but I’ll just say that I’m living in my own place now and sharing custody of my kids. This has been so much harder than I thought it would be, but there are moments of clarity where I see the big picture of why I’m here. I hope for more of those moments as the year continues.

In a conversation with a friend, we were discussing what role communication has in our lives, how we go about it, and what ultimately do we want from communicating with both people we love and strangers. For me, to be understood is to be loved. There have been times when I have been sure what I’ve said is clear, only to find out that the audience interpreted it completely differently. And when I am unclear about something, I strive for understanding in an almost uncomfortable way (for the other person/people). I ask many questions. Probably too many. I exhaust people because I have such a desire to really understand things.

I think about my experiences in math class; Algebra II to be specific. I took Algebra I twice (and that didn’t include the year in pre-algebra). But by the time I go to Algebra II (and Trig the next semester), I was loving it. I loved math my junior year of high school because I finally understood what was going on. For me, basics have always been hard to understand, but the more complicated stuff is where I shine.

The same is true for human interaction. I may miss the really basic signs someone is putting out there, but I can pick up on the minutiae that no one else will see. This works against me in actual day-to-day life, but it seems to work well for me as a poet. After all, a poem can be a very focused story about one particular aspect.

Where does this leave me? Well, days like today I’m glad I’m a writer, because the words will never twist where I set them. In other realms of my life, I am struggling to understand and to make myself understood.

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