Words have weight. They are not light and insubstantial but can be heavy and indigestible. Words are sharp. Some stay stuck in places that hurt, barbed arrows lodged in the heart. Words echo in the empty moments or scream in the stressed places. At times of uncertainty and panic - hanging on the end of a rope at the rock wall, the voices of failure take hold of those words and fling them about, the chaos and fear of a riot. An ill-placed word can topple the precarious structure of self-esteem and set-off, like a firework display, an explosion of past words: words from childhood, words from adulthood, words spoken by people who have forgotten they knew me and words spoken by loved ones.
Words can be whispered because they are so hard to say. Words can be shouted in anger and hurt. Words can be promises made and vows sworn and yet can prove impossible to keep.
Words can be a comfort, a safety, a thread to follow back to safety. Words that are spoken softly in the darkness of tears can remind and reassure of love, of hope, of life. Words can explain, used gently and intentionally, treading with great care around the pot-holes of misunderstanding that upset life’s journey. These are words that set things right.
And I speak words over the lives and hearts and minds of my children. My own arrows sent flying to lodge and hurt, my own comforts, safety or reassurance.
And I write words in a blog post, tentative and exploring. Not holding all the answers, not even to myself, but discovering and seeing what my thoughts sound like caught in time, dressed in words and held up to view.