I’ve always had the ability to articulate what I am thinking; I’ve just never been one to share such thoughts. As a shy kid growing up I kept most things to myself. I’d have a journal and it would be full of blank pages because I didn’t even want to write down my innermost questions, feelings, or anecdotes about my day in them because I didn’t trust the pages I wrote them on. I think they’d betray me by the peering eyes of my sister or parents. Believe it or not, as transparent and wordy as I may be on this blog it is still something that I am working on.
My Meyers-Briggs personality trait says that I am an ENTJ-Extroverted, INtuitive, Thinking, and Judging. Studies have shown that this personality type lives externally, takes everything around them, turns it into logic, and internalizes just about everything. Without thinking about it we are the type of people to say something that we think is small and it may come off intimidating and insensitive to others’ feelings. I’m good for that, which is another reason why I keep things to myself.
I keep many thoughts to myself because I do understand that words have power. Words are everything to me. It’s nice when people do things for me, but nothing validates me more than someone telling me what they think of something I’ve done. Kind words have motivated me to do extrodinary things and continue when I’m down and not so nice ones have kept me in a shell as well. I’ll never forget when Timile was pregnant. She was having one of those nights where as a guy you’d say “she’s being hormonal” and she went off on me. Timile was an English major so needless to say she was great with words and one of the things that I found the most attractive about her was her ability to use them. While going off on me, she called me fat. Now, I’d put on some weight while she was pregnant due to stress eating and since we were poor what she couldn’t eat I’d eat it just to get my money’s worth. I’d be eating close to two meals three times a day for what we later found out was because of cancer. Nonetheless, I didn’t say anything at the time. I just took what she said in and internalized it. About a day or two later I told her I was fasting for a week and wasn’t eating. A couple of months later while we were arguing in tears I told her about the time she called me fat and that was the reason I didn’t eat the following week.
“I guess it’s just a need to be heard/ I need people to say ‘I can’t believe your words’/…Thoughts is sporadic I have to un-confuse it/” Jay Z
Because I am a shy person, I tend to do things like that when someone responds negatively to me. My first big foray into using my words outside of my private thoughts was when I started rapping at thirteen. People responded to it and I knew I was really good at it. Saying witty things in a catchy way was a drug to me. The more I did it, the more people gravitated to me, and my confidence grew. I owe almost everything my life has become to rapping. It made me clever and candid. It gave me the ability to know what to say to get the right reaction out of people. Truth be told, such an ability is what has drew in who would become my closest friends and attracted anyone I’ve had a relationship with. As I’ve grown older, every once in a while I get the itch to rap, but it isn’t my primary means of expression. One day, I’ll summon up enough courage to share something with you all. However, my use of words has evolved into writing and using my talent of storytelling and such like I do on this blog. Developing my skills here on Single Dadventures has kind of turned this writing thing into a profession. Word.
As a father, my use of words is more important than ever before. I’ve literally taught someone how to use the English language as I will start working on teaching her Spanish soon (If anyone has children’s book in Spanish they’d like to donate I know a little girl who’d be glad to take them off your hands). My daughter has quite the vocabulary because of what I say to her. She knows what to say and will tell me when a curse slips out on the phone “Don’t say that, Princess Man!” in a reprimanding tone (I’ve only let her curse once. She had an incredibly bad number 2 accident two minutes after I’d just changed her pull-up and it for real in that Dunkin Doughnuts on 14th st. It got everywhere and the only only word that described how I felt since it was what I was cleaning up was shit. I’d said it a bunch of times out of frustration and she asked me “You cleaning my shit, Princess Man?” and I responded “Yes!” It made me chuckle and feel a little better.)
Cydney trully believes that she is a princess. She does because I tell her she is. She’s made up in her mind that she is Princess Sofia the First and our home is a castle-so I run with it. I talk to her all the time like she is royalty and because of this she believes it. What was once just a game is not reality because of this.
I say all of this to say that words are more powerful than anything. They can raise people up, or they can raze people down to nothing depending on how you use them. We never know how what we say will affect others. There truly is life and death in the tongue, pen, keyboard, smartphone or whatever people use nowadays to say stuff. Because of that I try my best to use them to speak life into others. I’m even trying to use my own words to get past my own fears and phobias. Whoever’s reading this: try your best today and everyday to tell someone what you think of them. If they don’t believe you then do it every day until they do. It’ll change their life and it’ll change yours. It will come back to you when you most need it.