I may as well make it a group apology and get it over with.
This morning I called to cancel a meeting for this afternoon that wasn’t even scheduled until next Tuesday, and last night my son had to fill me in about plans for a trip that he’d already told me about.
On Sunday my husband informed me that all he wanted for his birthday was time alone with me and yesterday afternoon as we drove in companionable silence he let me in on a little secret; he likes to have me alone in the car because then my full attention is on him. We both laughed out loud when less than half an hour later I asked his advice about a section of the book I am working on. In my head.
I could have reminded him that I’d warned him about what would happen when I resumed work on the book I’d started a year ago, but he ended up informing me that he likes to see me this way, immersed in my writing. I hope that is true, because I am there now, inside my head. I might be looking at you, I may even appear to be interested in what you are saying. I could be nodding my head in agreement. But there is a good chance my thoughts are on what I wrote that morning, or what I am going to write next.
I intend to listen. I care about the people around me and what is important to them. I want to give my husband my full attention and listen the first time when my son is talking to me so he doesn’t have to repeat himself.
I’ll try to do better. I really will.
But in the meantime, if you need to talk to me, you might want to ask, as my daughter Katie did after my coupon fiasco of the other day, “Are you even listening?”