It's the Words You Don't Say that Haunt You

Speak your truth when you have the chance

market of clay pots

My former next-door neighbors were total assholes.

Banging, clanging, sawing, drilling, car engines racing, dogs barking, kids screaming, backwashing boat motors, illegal leaf burning that smoked me off of my own patio, beer bottles clanging in the recycling bin.

Light shining in my bedroom window every night.

A toilet in the driveway for 3 months.

His kids parking in front of my house every. single. day.

The noise and chaos never stopped.

I literally used to wake up on weekend mornings, thinking, “What fresh hell is waiting for me today?”

I was forever an angry, nervous wreck.

One time, I had the opportunity to tell my neighbor how his actions had been impacting my life when he came over to discuss that I'd called the police over his endlessly-barking dog.

My husband stopped me.

I get it. He didn’t want to cause any further bad blood and he was concerned about retribution.

But that lost opportunity really haunted me.

Yeah, I wanted to give him a piece of my mind. I wanted him to feel the anger and the frustration I'd been feeling for years at that point.

And because his actions had turned my life on its side and I felt like I deserved the opportunity to let him know that. To kind of set my universe straight again.

But because I didn’t get to do that, my frustration festered into an angry, open wound. And every time I heard him working on a truck in his driveway or clanging beer bottles or saw his kids using the front of my house as overflow parking, salt got poured on it.

Even now, nearly 6 months after I moved away, the wound in only now starting to close. And I'll confess that I still clench my jaw when I think about him.

My point is this. If someone’s behavior or actions have impacted your life, tell them. Because I think we all end up choking on the words we don’t get to say.

You know why? Because you matter.

If another’s actions have directly impacted your life, you have the right to tell them. Of course, I advocate doing it calmly and kindly as possible. It solves nothing to approach someone in anger, even if that's what you're feeling. If it's appropriate, you can even ask for the change that would set your world straight again.

It doesn’t have to be in person. You can have your say through an email, a text, or a letter. In fact, it may be a better avenue for you to gather your thoughts and state your truth clearly and with inner strength.

It may well be that nothing changes outwardly. But you will feel a shift inside you. And you will stand a little taller.

Because you spoke your mind. And turned your Universe right again.

There is great power there. Own it. Use it.

Watch it change your life.

With love.


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