Say it now or blurt it later


The hardest time to talk about something is when there’s a lot at stake.

Like a friendship. Or a client-ship. Or a relationship of any kind. (Or, yes, a lot of money. Not sure about this, because I do not come from Big Money, but I suspect it’s hard for them to talk about it, too. Most of the people I know who grew up with Big Money aren’t big on talking about much of anything, much less money.)

Of course, life being the perverse sumbitch she is and the Universe having a mighty hearty sense of humor for an inanimate object or an interwoven collection of collectively-animated objects, the time when it’s most important to talk about something is when there’s a lot at stake.

Only you don’t, because, you know, there’s a lot at stake, so you hold tight and tell yourself you need to do a little testing with mission control and a little prep work with the editor and maybe call in some outside consultants to reality-check and drum up a strategy, and before you know it, you’ve got a full-scale storm a-brewin’ instead of a little rumbling in a teapot or a Stage-IV melanoma instead of a freckle that looks “off.”

Did I mention I’m going to the dentist today? And that I’ve had a number of dental-related issues over the past several months?As in what comes out of the mouth, so goes what happens inside it. Or somesuch.

It’s good to be cognizant of the world outside our skins, and to understand that sometimes, the party of the second part is going through something that’s not so much a party as a cruise around a circle of hell, and that maybe our Thing can wait.

On the other hand, we’re all grappling with some goddamned thing or another all the time. And when we’re not, well, things are so nice, you wouldn’t want to go spoiling this Precious Moment, right?

Enh. Five-alarm, crisis situations aside, there’s usually room to be made in a day to talk about most anything. Or, if you like, even on a spin around the fifth circle of hell, sometimes you can catch a breeze.

By all means, prep. I lived without an editor for a long time and it wasn’t always a good thing. Now I live with one, and a conveniently placed override switch I installed a while back. It’s finely calibrated to look for openings, and I’m more finely calibrated to understand how much ground can be covered in an hour, or a half-hour, or ten minutes. I’m also better at getting how to bring something up in a way I can be heard, and I’m like a fucking champion compared to my younger, assholier self when it comes to copping to my part in things. (Hint: cop up front. It’s almost always better.)

For the worriers out there, nothing is wrong. This is just life, which is change, and me dealing with it. Like (maybe) an adult, for once. In a way that (maybe) I won’t be embarrassed to tell my shrink about when I see her this week for our monthly meetup. (For the record, I’d probably do them more often if she didn’t live so far away and the economy wasn’t so wacky.)

I’ll get through my changing. You’ll get through yours. We’ll all get through, one way or another.

I’ve just decided I want to be in the driver’s seat more often.

Taking the wheel.

Saying it now…


Image by fisherman’s daughter via Flickr, used under a Creative Commons license.


  1. I COMPLETELY agree with what you’ve written in this post. There have been so many times I’ve put of saying something to someone, only to blurt it out later in a much less appropriate context or situation. It’s so important to take control of your words and use them carefully and I think we often forget to do that. Even if it’s hard to deal with something, it’s best to do now. Don’t put it off because it will only get worse (and, most likely, come out of your mouth in a terrible way).

  2. I find that the worst part about putting off any conversation is that the time is therefore spent imagining it, which is often much worse than actually having it.

  3. This post speaks to me in such a profound way. A guru I used to see quite often said many times in her lectures “say the truth as soon as you know it.” The thing that 99% of the time stops me from doing that is I’m SO worried about (and attached to) the outcome: Is it the right time to say it? Will he/she be hurt? Will he/she get mad at me (my biggest fear) for saying what I have to say? Barring being mean just for the sake of being mean, I tell myself and anyone else who suffers (and i mean suffers) with saying what needs to be said to remember, “I am not responsible for others’ reactions to my truth”

  4. yup, me too. i can relate to this post totally and completely agree. but most especially about this part: “my younger, assholier self”. you are brilliant sometimes!

  5. PP – I think the magic happens (even though I recently came out against magic) (but I’m using it metaphorically, here) somewhere between figuring it out and figuring out how to say it in a way people can hear. Some people get hung up on the first part and some on the second, and if you can figger out which is you and get yourself to cop to it…well, theoretically, it can all work out much, much better.

    Ilise – Haha. Yes. So true.

    Al – Maybe the knowing it is enough (per my reply to PP, above). Maybe we just have to work on making ourselves good, passionate communicators and then let ‘er rip once something comes up.

    Joan – I thank you. Especially for thinking that particular weird little line was brilliant.

  6. “Even if your hands are shaking, Even as your eyes are closing. . .”

    Man, having those crappy, tough, make your mouth dry, and your heart race conversations are great. Great in a man-I-really-needed-to-do-that type of converastion and I-sure-hope-that-it-makes-a-difference-but-even-if-it-doesn’t-then-I-can-only-directly-impact-me kind a way.

    PS: How cool is it that links to your entry are reposted by people like @Havi – it is like they are a free re-post. Glad that I stopped by.

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