Sunday, December 19, 2010

The joy of keeping quiet

One of the things I like about my wife is her ability to have a conversation without necessarily saying a word. We can sit at the breakfast table in rapt silence for what seems like an age, reading the paper, catching up on an article on the BlackBerry, sipping coffee from an overly large mug. Every once in a while, she'll toss a quick glance over my way. I might return it. Or I might not, depending on how deep I am into whatever I'm doing. The dog will usually sit beside one of us, hoping against hope that he'll catch a special treat from above. Not likely, little buddy, but we appreciate your hanging around all the same.

Despite the quiet, there's a lot going on here. But the fact that it is quiet is what makes it something I look forward to. She gets it, that not every waking moment needs to be filled with noise. That "making conversation" isn't something that anyone needs to do. Ever. That communication extends to levels far beyond words, and more often than not it's good for the soul to leave words behind in favor of other ways of connecting. That the human mind and soul need periods where nothing is said, to breathe, to catch a beat, to just be, without any kind of artificial interruption, to prepare for whatever comes next.

I'll never understand why some people feel the need to fill the air with noise or why some people feel compelled to be constantly heard. I'll never understand how I got so lucky to have met someone so different from the norm.

Don't mind me while I sit here, quietly, in appreciation of another quiet start to the day.

Your turn: Why does quiet time appeal to you?

11 comments:

theVibeGirl said...

There is never really "quiet"- a mall crowd; soothing waves at the lake; static radio; they're all equally noisy but give off a variety of moods. I just can't imagine being deprived of ambience, which is music in itself.

Macy said...

The reason why quiet time appeals to me is probably because today most people feel the need to constantly be connected, whether it be talking or texting. I, on the other hand, don't think that every second of the day needs to be filled with mindless chatter. Silence is a beautiful thing. And as you were mentioning, when you have a real connection with someone, so much can be said without ever actually saying a word.

Karen S. said...

Oh my gosh it's so funny you mention this. We have a man in his 20's at work who is also interning to be a minister as well (long story) but we jokingly (being tactful) teased him that he is never quiet. He enters work talking, and talks and talks all the way until he's out the door....it's really getting seriously annoying! lol

darlin said...

You are blessed to have met your soul mate.

My quiet time means that I can allow myself time in my own head without others interfering. Sometimes that's a good place to be, meditation, thoughts of times gone by, of times to come or sometimes thoughts of nothing. I enjoy time in my own head with no interruptions. It is a shame that more people don't appreciate the same solace.

Carmi, so the theme of the week, can it be a link to an old post or if I choose to add a new photo it has to be through my blogger?

Jeremiah Andrews said...

I understand those times of quiet between two people. Hubby and I get the quiet, quite often.

In those times of the day when no words need to be spoken. They usually happen early in the day as we start our days, no tv, no radio, just quiet space.

Then it comes again around bed time, when we go through our ablutions and get ready for bed.

It is hard sometimes to get that quiet in the business of the day. But with the closing of the windows for the season, and the world gets shut out, we get the chance to explore the silence within.

I need that quiet as I start my day so that I can sort out my day as it will happen. I love to sit in the silence and sometimes write or read before bed.

Thanks for the topic

Jeremy

Scented Sweetpeas said...

Goodness, I would be your worst nightmare :-) I must abmit to being a bit of a chatterbox, I am fine with silence with close family but feel uncomfortable if it is with a stranger - not sure why. Mind you on the plus side you learn a hell of a lot when just chatting to people.

Carmi said...

Darlene: Great question. Here's the lowdown:

It can be whatever you want: A new post, an existing entry, something on your blog or something completely elsewhere. As long as folks can find it on the web, it's fair game. And you can participate as often as you want.

Thanks!

Vicki said...

The only time our home is really "silent" is late at night. Hubby is at work, daughter is sleeping, the dogs are curled up somewhere. Other than that, even when nothing is said there is a "hum" somewhere.

Serendipity said...

Lol!! After certain years that's what happens to married couple.... Routine...stereotype. Can't think of a movie name but that's what they show in that Christmas related movie.

Juniper said...

I'm totally with you here Carmi. People who feel the need to constantly talk wear me out.

Titanium said...

Sometimes we are most clearly heard and understood in complete and comfortable silence. Words are a wonderful communication medium, but so often they replace a genuine connection with space-filling noise.

The activities I enjoy the most are those in which I participate silently, methodically, logically... climbing, kayaking, photography, ikebana... with or without a partner.

It's a beautiful thing indeed to share a universe of understanding with a like-minded soul.

I think that true quiet is a place found within, in the eye of the storm. There is nothing inherently quiet about whitewater kayaking; yet, when the water is rushing the loudest all I can hear is my own heartbeat.

Quiet is this thing with wings and tailfeathers that rests silently on your arm, awaiting the next command, like a gyrfalcon. Quiet is a soul at rest in the middle places.