Pay no attention to the girl behind the curtain

The past few weeks I have been at my introverted best.  I have been sitting quietly.  Thinking.  Stewing a little.  Stepping on a soapbox only to immediately step off.  This is what I do with controversy.  I watch.  And listen.  And think.   And almost speak.  

Once again I have found myself at a loss.  Not just a loss of words, but at times even a loss of thoughts.  I don’t know what to think.  But a lot of other people certainly do.  Facebook has a way of handing everyone a megaphone.  While they sit behind a curtain.  Funny how much more one can say behind a curtain.  A little like I am now I guess.  I listened while everyone was shouting into their megaphones.  I listened while they chose sides.  I was both surprised and not surprised.  I learned that some issues are so polarizing that a middle voice does not exist.  I realized that I used to think the news was that middle voice, but have since changed my mind.  I found that everyone with a megaphone had an agenda.  And was shouting it into my face.  And yet not looking me in the eye.  Pesky curtains…  

Eventually I settled into a deep disappointment—not so much with humanity but with real people.  People in my life, people I socialize with, people who are my friends.  That is when I began to climb upon the soapbox.  But I stopped.  Why should I get a megaphone?  What agenda am I about to push?  Who am I to speak?

I went to a panel discussion.  One where real live people spoke to other real live people—about a controversial issue—without yelling—and while looking at each other in the eyes.  I was in awe of the exchange of ideas and emotion.  The cathartic outpouring of stories, of supporting each other, of looking toward the future.  Not everyone hides behind a curtain.

I realized that I am not ready to step on the soapbox.  There is this log in my own eye I must remove first.  I am not without guilt.  The beauty is that I now have a starting point.  A direction in which to move my foot.   I even have a plan.  I have heard that logs can be removed from eyes, but that it can take a while.  It may also be painful.  But all I can think of is how good it will feel when it is gone.

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2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Laura
    Sep 10, 2014 @ 18:49:04

    This is so well written, Sarah. I think about you and your world often, friend. (Even though, I’m horrible at calling–or calling back).

    Reply

  2. Andy Burnside-Weaver
    Nov 19, 2014 @ 12:29:15

    “One where real live people spoke to other real live people—about a controversial issue—without yelling—and while looking at each other in the eyes. I was in awe of the exchange of ideas and emotion. The cathartic outpouring of stories, of supporting each other, of looking toward the future.”

    More of this in our society, please. This should be your soapbox – getting people down from their soapboxes and off of their megaphones and from behind their curtains so that they may still speak (while looking others in the eyes), and also listen.

    Reply

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