Friday, September 24, 2010

Not Everybody Talks

I am not maternal. I would not categorize myself under "caregiver" and when I walk into a room, I cannot sense what mood someone is in. I am in my own world and I have always figured, that is okay. When I need to talk, I do. I figured, everyone else speaks up when they need to, too. I am wrong, of course.

Luckily, when it is really, really quiet it occurs to me, the other person has interiority too. It strikes me, like a bible smacking me on the head. "Wake UP! You're Selfish!"

Tonight it was very, very quiet. In our kitchen. 1 am. My roommate massaged her own feet while I grilled a burger.
"We're both quiet because we're taking care of our own shit" I thought.

But it was quiet. And I considered that my roommate is from Japan. That she only just moved to his city of sin, this enormous city, a few months ago. She hasn't made friends yet. She has no family here.

"How are you?" I asked. She said she was fine. Twenty minutes later, after silence she put down her feet and she said "I am overwhelmed."

She wouldn't have told anyone that this night if I hadn't asked.

Does it have to be the dead of night for me to notice that somebody else may need something? How do you hone your skills at reading other people?


  1. Strange. I didn't have you pegged for the quiet type. Reading people I guess comes with time. And of course, asking questions...and I'm not even sure it really even matters what the questions are.

    But warning, sometimes you'll wish you hadn't asked.

  2. Mostly it's body language that I notice first, but I do have a terrible habit of opening my mouth and letting the first ridiculous thing that pops out land in front of those with me. And they either respond to it or we get that terrible cricket chirping silence.
    I'm not maternal either *shrugs* Ain't no thing.