Friday, June 17, 2011

use your kind words

The ever wonderful Krista from ~my life as i see it~ has this line inviting one to leave comments.

Use your kind words.

Krista is the kind of blogger I wish I was; infrequent but when she does post every one is a gem, well-considered, prosaic, thought-provoking and gentle.
I feel like she asks us to respect that, to tread lightly, to be our best selves.

For isn't that was using kind words really is? To be your best self, to be respectful, to think before you blurt.

I've been thinking about this recently as Stella starts to develop language. To understand words, link them with images, become more aware of subtle tone, emotive inflections, to mimic and express herself in more and more ways.
I'm dusting off the skills I largely learnt from my Mum when Frieda was at this stage.
Stella and I sit together 'reading' a book. On a page of farmyard animals I ask her, 'Where's the duck?'.
She points to a sheep.
I smile encouragingly and say 'That's a sheep, he goes baa, isn't he lovely and woolly. Here's a duck, swimming in the water, quack quack.'
She quacks and points to the duck, 'quack quack quack'.
There is no negativity in this space, no harsh words, nothing shrill or grating.

Sometimes I rue that my words to Frieda, and hers to me, are not always as kind. But then I remember that they're kinder than they have been in the past, kinder than they will no doubt be at some stage in the future.
Kind in all the ways that really matter. This is an ever-changing process.

And I have to giggle that Stella's first 'phrase' is 'bag 'og', said with a little menacing finger in the air, whenever our poor hounded bull-terrier enters the room.
Not all of one's words are kind, and one can't be expected to stick to the kind ones all the time right?

But ...

Recently I witnessed a woman I know speaking to her husband in the most revolting and patronising manner. I wouldn't speak like that to our dog, no matter how many times she'd shat on the bathroom floor.
I don't know the circumstances of the altercation, and while I believe that no one truly knows the inner workings of someone else's relationship, I do know that to speak to another human being in that tone reveals a total lack of respect. And that made me sad.
And it was in front of their children and mine. That made me sadder.

The next day I stood behind a man at a pay-parking stattion. His coin kept dropping through, rejected by the machine. He kept trying, the machine kept denying and eventually, instead of the exasperated huffy sigh I was expecting, he threw back his head and laughed, catching myself and the growing queue behind me unawares, making us all smile too.
As he walked away to try another station I noticed he was wearing a dog-collar. Not being a man of god I couldn't say whether that was what made all the difference, but I could tell he was, in his head, using his kind words.

Such a small thought, but such a vital one. Use your kind words. I bet you'll hear them spoken back to you.


MissBuckle said...

You are that kind of blogger, Molly :-).

I love my blog for that exact reason. It reminds me to use kind words about myself, my day and the people around me.

Happy Friday

Molly said...

Ah thank you sweet Buckle. Even when I blog about suppositories?
Oh that's right, I didn't post that one. Thank god!!

spudballoo said...

Ah, this just hit 'the spot'...kind words...we all need listening ears. In a very posh nursery round here the children are given 'cold prickles' when they are unkind/naughty. I think that's insane but I get the sentiment.

Sometimes I hear myself address my lovely boys with words and in a tone/volume which would distress me if someone else talked to me in that way. Makes me ashamed. They don't deserve that from anyone, least of all me.


Possum said...

I have to agree with MissBuckle... you are that kind of blogger and that kind :)

Molly said...

Thank you Possum!

julochka said...

a very good reminder, but can I please have the old molly back? now? fuck. :-)

Jennifer said...

Nice thought and yes the tone of the words used does make a difference.

Thanks also for the link to Krista's blog - she has a wonderful way of telling astory - I enjoyed reading from both of you!

Cally said...

That kind of reaction is the kind that makes your day. I wish I could remember to laugh at life's absurdities more often.

And I think you're right - what goes around comes around more often than not.