Shhh! Be Veh-wy Veh-wy Quiet...

When I was in college (by that I mean, the first time I was in college, back at American University), I was the co-organizer for an event called Take Back the Night as part of my duties for a women's organization with which I worked.  This event was part of a national Take Back the Night movement wherein people–both men and women–who have been victims of sexual assault and domestic violence have the opportunity to tell their stories.  The whole point is to shatter the silence imposed on those who have been affected by these tragedies in order for these people to regain their voices.

As a person, I fundamentally changed on the night of that event.

I stopped looking at silence as an implicit obligation for participation in normal society.  Instead, I looked at it as an expectation placed upon me by others who would have me be silent.  I found it to be a choice that I was making.

That night, I regained my voice gave my voice permission to speak.

These days, I'm probably a bit too brazen.  I probably give voice to a little bit too much to make everyone around me totally comfortable 100% of the time.  But, I definitely prefer that to the alternative.

When I'm really honest with myself, I have to admit that I actually kind of love that about myself.

Giving myself permission to speak was not about wreaking havoc on those that had done me wrong. It was about giving myself permission to express who I was; about giving myself permission to have feelings in the first place–to act and be an agent capable of independent action.  Giving myself permission to have a voice was about giving myself permission to be.

I see, too often, people that I love denying their right to have a voice.  And for what, I don't know.

What I do know is that Satan would have us be silent, for when we are silent, we are far less powerful.  Please speak, friends.  Give voice to the most tender parts of your souls, even in the face of fear in all its forms.  Allow yourself to be heard, for we want to hear.


Anonymous said...

It has been my experience that I give up my voice in hopes of giving up responsibility. It seems us humans really hate responsibility. I use to be a silent partner as well. I think this is the case when we give up any power though. So often we(those of us who do) say someone made us do something or "I had to because of what they did." I think we give up power so that we can blame others for our circumstances. And yet I have found it to be incredibly liberating when I acknowledged this and started taking back my voice and all my other powers I was giving away so I could blame others. It is still difficult at times but overal very liberating. Sam

Post a Comment


Lauren Kay House © 2011