Listen

A house in the neighborhood got teepeed. It’s rather beyond me why anyone would want to put that kind of effort into such a prank. We are weeks away from Halloween, when that sort of thing usually happens. At least it isn’t difficult or expensive to clean up. It is a wonder though, why? Like so many questions I ask, there will never be an answer – at least not a satisfactory one.

Snow is on the horizon. A freeze is forecasted, and so I took some last minute pictures of my fall flowers after I drained garden hoses. The mums and zinnias have been stellar and I am sad to see them go. A freeze also means there will soon be much more to cut down and put in the trash, as well as serious leaf raking. Two of my burning bushes have already turned the brilliant red that I love so much.

Emotions. We all have them. Our culture doesn’t encourage them, especially in men, but thankfully I see a slow changing of the guard. I see mental health counseling not having the stigma it used to have. I see people being encouraged to attend counseling rather than being told they would just be admitting they’re sick. I see the rise of trauma based therapy in schools – an understanding that when children act out at school, there is probably a root cause at home. I see us figuring out that talking about what bothers us, whether you call it venting or verbalizing doesn’t matter, talking helps. AND that means, here is the crux people, listening matters. Listening with an open mind. Listening without judgement. Listening to hear – not to respond. Listening to someone else when they have a problem, grief, a marital schism, whatever, listening is the greatest gift of parenting or friendship that you can give. Let’s teach listening.IMG-0948

About Barbara K Tyner

A graduate of UCCS with a degree in English Lit., Barbara writes Children's Literature as well as mainstream fiction. Her popular children's series, The Badger Books, is co-authored with Barbara's daughter, Laura. Her first novel, "Wait Here, Wait There" deals with grief and Alzheimer's. Her second novel, Rhyaden, a middle grade fantasy released Nov. 2018. Gardening, exploring National Parks, Kayaking, hiking, and snow-shoeing top her list of favorite hobbies.
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