Gets me thinking.

Somehow this song always gets me thinking. About life’s big questions, and which ones I should try to tackle in my writing. “I Will Follow You Into the Dark” is quite well-known — perhaps Death Cab for Cutie’s most famous song. I’ve been listening to it for years and it never gets old.

The song definitely represents sadness and uncertainty, but it doesn’t necessarily make me “sad.” Just pensive. More willing to delve into parts of me I might otherwise close off. The words are honest, which makes me want to be.

I’ve found it’s so hard to make writing both “happy” and interesting. I want to experience happy things, but lately I don’t want to write happy things. I want to write about struggles I encounter within me and observe around me, small and large. There are so many things we don’t face in conversation but can face with written words.

Sometimes I feel everyone, including myself, is trying to be so perfectly zipped up, put together and presentable, all while wishing everyone else wasn’t so put together and presentable. We are too busy “doing great” or “having wonderful weekends” to mention our kid has been sick or we’re having a really tough time in school. We’d rather put on a mask than put someone out. It’s only to close family and friends that we might say “I’m okay,” or “I’m doing fine, but not great.”

We uphold honesty as a virtue but actually being honest can make us feel selfish and needy. Why is that?

Faith. Life. Death. Love. The song posted below is so powerful since it touches on life’s most difficult themes- and its wide appeal reminds us that everyone wrestles with them, even those who have “got it all figured out” on the surface.

2 thoughts on “Gets me thinking.

  1. Often times, people shroud what they truly feel or think for fear of dejection or acceptance. We all want to be accepted somehow — its just human nature. Somehow it makes us feel better. We have issues being honest and blunt. Its not necessarily a bad thing, but if we evade expressing what we truly feel or think, eventually those thoughts come back around.

    “I should have said…”,
    “I wish I had the chance to say…”

    I think we need to be more brave and try to be more honest and blunt. It saves time and stress, both factors being beneficial in work and relationships. The less time and the less stress we have from decoding each other, the more time we have to enjoy life and foster relationships — to do things that matter to us.

  2. Yes. We do spend so much time and stress “decoding one another,” instead of flat-out saying what we mean (in relationships with family, friends, boyfriends/girlfriends etc.) You’re right, it’s an acceptance thing. It’s so built into the social culture, though, to hope others just “get it” or sense something’s wrong without being too explicit. We don’t want to be the one that’s always asking for help, taking more from others than we’re offering. Of course, there needs to be a balance (some people DO talk too much, ask for too much) and straightforwardness can be off-putting. But I think overall we can afford to be a little more blunt 🙂

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