Talking is a form of therapy in itself. I am not much of a conversationist, that’s why I write. Conversations can feel like they last a lifetime, either because it’s a really bad conversation or if they’re really good. I think people are usually the result of all the conversations they have had in their lifetime. I find few conversations so interesting where I can contribute my two cents. There may be a reason why people find an escape in talking about their problems. It can lead to answers and in the most marvellous of ways, solutions.
I’ve not had too many conversations to hold onto, and most have been to books or to myself. When I was small I had a host of different imaginary friends, that I enjoyed talking to. Much later I had actual humans to talk to and unlike my imaginary friends, I couldn’t control their rationality. They thought and spoke for themselves and very rarely did they sound poetic like humans usually sound in books. Not everything is a dialogue or an inspiring quote. I soon realised not everybody spoke like they would in an Oscar Wilde play or George Bernard Shaw’s. In fact, most of the time people really are clueless and very often don’t say what they intend to. I used to speak my mind until one day when I was told I am too honest and intimidating.
It took a toll on me, it made me quiet, but once I began my tryst with history, a romance that lasted a whole degree, I realised the only way to make a point and be heard is by being too honest and intimidating. Of course, it works in academia to a certain extent but in real life, you can’t throw around vocabulary like it’s no one’s business and be articulate. I would take ages to draft a text mostly because I wanted to sound correct. I would write in my diary like a seasoned writer but swear ever so often in my conversations with friends.
It wasn’t easy to talk about myself. I absolutely hate introductions. Maybe because I don’t really know who I am. I usually say the wrong thing in the wrong place at the wrong time. So I absolutely hate new conversations. They make me nervous and anxious. My palms become sweaty and my breaths become quicker. I can barely get a word out. But with people I know well enough I will drone on for hours on end until they tell me to shut up. Recently my conversations have become shorter and fewer in number. I don’t know if it’s a good thing. But people have pointed it out.
I feel like this blog is my conversation, my writing is the only mic to my thoughts and opinions. Think of this blog as one long conversation where it’s mostly me speaking. It helps me rationalise my thoughts, what I can’t tell you in person I’ll tell you through my writing. I used to do the same thing when I was a teenager, except I used to hide behind a pseudonym back then. I loved pseudonyms, they were my alter egos, the chatty part of the argumentative, honest but shut in Sahitya.
There are some kinds of conversations I absolutely love, especially the ones I share with my sister. She without asking me to say a word can usually tell me what’s on my mind. Even when I can’t articulate my thoughts she understands them. Maybe it’s the seven years she has on me or she is just that good. The best conversationalists are usually those who listen. They might not say a word but help you become aware of your thoughts, solve most of your problems and let you take all the credit. There are those conversationalists too who are the ones who just show you they’re around even when you don’t reach out to them. They check up on you now on then and give you your time to speak what’s on your mind. There are conversationalists too who talk a lot but make you feel like you are put together, they distract you from your problems and brighten up a day or two.
Conversations are more than just a way to spend your time. There are some people you genuinely want to talk to and there are others you’d rather never talk to. That is a conscious choice we make as human beings. I used to hate conversations but lately, I have found that they are a way of getting better. They give me ideas and put me in touch with myself. In conversations, I can see bits of my old self, return to my rescue. Also, they are the cheapest form of therapy, and if you are lucky to have good conversationalists around you they can even be free. Conversations are a great form of expression, completely our own. To converse well is an art. I have much to say but I’ll save some for the next time.