lovelight holistic health clinic

healing ways - a series of healing stories

The Importance of Communication

Alfred woke up and gazed fondly at his wife of 60 years as she lay snoring quietly beside him in bed. The day was starting gently but he knew that before the end he and Frances would be tired after celebrating their diamond wedding anniversary with their friends and family. "Who knows what the day has in store," thought Alfred as he went to the kitchen to make his wife breakfast in bed, which she always appreciated.

He returned shortly afterward, just in time to to greet his slowly awakening wife and present her with breakfast. Carefully Alfred handed her the plate of porridge cooked just the way she liked it, the cup of tea in her favourite mug, and the plate with two slices of toast, lovingly buttered and spread, one with strawberry jam and the other with honey. She looked at her breakfast and then at Alfred's, which was very similar, and then she burst into real tears.
"Do you know what day this is?" she asked Alfred.
"Yes, my darling, it's our diamond wedding. But what's the matter? What is wrong? Have I done something to upset you?"
She points to her plate of toast. "I would have thought that on our diamond wedding I would have deserved real bread and not two toasted crusts! You have two slices of real bread, why do I have to put up with crusts? All our marriage you seem to have given me a crust while you have the nice bread, and I have put up with it, but after 60 years and on this special day I am tired of putting up with it. Why can't you ever give me the nice bread?"
Alfred was aghast. He reached over and held Frances gently, tears falling from both their eyes now.
"But darling, I think the crusts are the best part and I have always saved them for you rather than eat them myself. So today I gave you two crusts as a special treat. I'm sorry, I just never knew."

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Two sisters were arguing over an orange. Each wanted the orange and each was telling the other why she deserved it more than the other sister. Eventually, they decided that the only fair way was to cut it in half and have half each. This they did and then went their separate ways. One sister went outside, peeled her half, threw the skin in the rubbish and ate the juicy flesh. Meanwhile, the other sister went to the kitchen, carefully peeled her half, threw the flesh away and started to make candied peel.

**********

James had worked hard all his life as an accountant, initially working for an accountancy company, then starting his own company and growing that into a sizable business. To the outside world he was very successful. However, there was just one area of discontent - James hated accounting and he hated going to work in the city every day. What he really enjoyed doing was working with high quality, fine-grained native timber. He was gifted in his ability to make beautiful furniture, and was especially proud of the house he had built and lined with native timber, right on the beach frontage at an idyllic location far from the city. He loved the bush and planted the land surrounding the house with native trees, which would make his retirement home a park by the sea.

Finally the day came when he could retire. He had sold his business, the farewell parties were over, and he turned to his wife and said "Well, we are now free to sell our house in the city and spend the rest of our lives at our place by the sea."
"Over my dead body," she replied. "You go if you like, but I'm staying right here. There's no way that I'm going to be stuck out there for the rest of my life."

They stayed in the city, and a few short years later he died in the city.

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Each of these stories, two fictional, one true, show the absolute need for clear communication. Alfred thought he was giving Frances the best parts; Frances thought she was getting the worst parts. Both could have had what they considered were the best parts for all of their 60 years of marriage.

By not specifying which part of the orange each sister wanted, they each ended up with only half of what they could have had if they had communicated effectively. Each was more interested in talking than listening. Instead of focussing on what part of the orange each wanted, they were focussed on "winning" the argument, so they both lost.

James and his wife never discussed what they wanted to do when he retired, when they would be able to do whatever they wanted; they each kept their hopes and dreams to themselves and assumed that the other would fit in with their plans. This was especially tragic as James had spent most of his life being someone he wasn't, so that he could spend the last few years being who he really was, and then that was denied him. There must be a valuable lesson therefore us all.

What sort of communication do you have with your loved ones? What misunderstandings come up from time to time? How are your beliefs and assumptions preventing you from hearing what your loved ones are trying to tell you? Are you focussed on "winning" to protect your ego or in trying to find the best solution?

If you come from the freedom of clear openness and really hear what is said to you, then you can communicate freely and openly, allowing the best solution to any differences to just appear. The Journey is an excellent start to clearing out false beliefs and prejudices so that open communication can occur naturally. If your relationships with your loved ones are less than you hoped, why not heal them now before they become worse? Are you really so attached to the pain of poor relationships that you will let this continue longer than it has? Why not try a Journey now?

 

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