I am the student that college professors finally land
on and look at for 75% of their lecture. I guess it is because my parents never
let me get away with eyes wandering if they were speaking. "Look at me
while I am talking to you." It shows someone that what they have to say is
important, that was what I was taught.
Beginning in my youth, I had people in parks and grocery
stores telling me their stories, their worries and fears. I cannot think of why
else except that, when they looked into my eyes, they felt I would
When a child speaks to me, I try my best to turn my eyes on
them just the same as any adult because I believe what they have to say it just
as important as anyone else. I find myself frowning when an adult trivializes
what a child has to say.
Many translate my constant wonder and smile to
naivety. Many take my quietness as a lack of cleverness. Many assume my quiet
voice comes from timidity. Many think I am weird for the things I do say. I
have had to learn that most people are not good listeners and this is because
most people have a thirst to be heard. They will try to quench it even at the
expense of others.
So, I try to listen.
Sometimes I want to be listened to. I want to not be the
girl who yells: "got it!" only for someone to hurdle themselves in
front of me and steal the show. The volleyball court of life. Sometimes I want
to answer for myself. Sometimes I get nervous when all eyes finally do turn on
me, I am not used to it. Always, I thank God for friends who turn to me, look
at me, and ask: "Emily, what do you think?"