Tuesday, November 1, 2011


My mother used to take me for drives in her car. I was young at the time--before I could drive myself, of course.

"There's a real estate open house by the peninsula," she would say, or "There's a deadline I need to make at the post office," "There's a neighbor that needs dinner tonight," "There's a baby shower gift I need to get for this weekend." She would hold out my shoes and say, "Come with me." Then she'd strap me in my car seat, the toddler seat, and eventually I'd strap myself in the front seat, and together we'd drive for hours and hours, peering out at blurred trees and squinting into the sun, which always seemed to be directly in our eyes no matter what compass direction we traveled.

It was during these drives that my mom would talk. And talk. And then be silent. And then talk some more. I can't remember exactly what she talked about, but I do remember feeling slightly irritated at both the unimportance and the abundance of her thoughts. What was the point of this jabber? What do I care about the biography she saw on TV, the shoes she saw at Nordstrom, the sandwich she ate at Subway?

It's taken me years to understand the need to talk--the need to be heard. I'm 21-years-old now, been married a few days over four months, currently pushing through my last 20 credits of my undergrad at a university that is two states away. My husband and I recently moved for him to begin his first year of law school. Anyone who's been in this position knows the long (long) study hours. Anyone who's been married understands the funny gender/personality differences to identify and get used to. And I feel like my entrance into womanhood is making me realize that women just want to talk, but our society isn't conducive to that.

Take, for example, blogging: a perfectly great outlet for someone to talk and maybe be heard. But even blogging becomes more complicated than that. "You can't blog without an objective," they say. "You need to be narrow in your content--crafts, cooking, electronics, politics. Otherwise you won't make any money."

Since when was it important to talk only if you're going to make money?

People don't understand that talking for the sake of talking is enough.

That's why my visiting teachees have me over for HOURS, and why they interrupt me each time I try to wrap up the conversation to keep me around a little longer. Compare that to my home teachers' stay for fifteen minutes. I'm not saying they should stay longer. Their visits are great as they are. But lately I've been thinking about the women who want me to stay so they can talk talk talk. I've been thinking about why my mother strapped her nine-year-old daughter and drove her all around northern California. I've been thinking about my friend who said there are days when her two-year-old son is the only person she sees. I'm slowly coming to realize why I can't seem to shut up when my husband asks me how my day is going, and why bridal showers are filled with womanly chatter so thunderous that I can barely hear myself think.

There is so much to say. And lately, I haven't been able to locate enough people to listen to it.


  1. hey! i saw your blog on facebook, hope you don't mind that i read it. i sooo agree. women just need to talk! it's kind of weird. and it's SO hard to find a good conversationalist. so hard. i've found that if i don't get in my regular phone call with my mom once a week, i get all needy and agitated haha. she's a good talker.

  2. Alexis said we should all hang out more. i agree. talking is my drug. :)

  3. Ha, wow, YES! I have always been a pretty quiet person. Then I came to college, and I had roommates that would talk... and talk... and talk.... And there was no development to their thought processes, and sometimes they would keep talking about the same thing for weeks at a time! And I would always try to inch my way out of the room so they would just STOP TALKING! And then, I became roommates with one girl who was such a good listener and validated all my thoughts, and I started to talk.. and talk.. and talk! And now I am totally with you - women need to talk to process their thoughts (as shallow or trite they may be). I often feel that invitations like - "I'm here for you. You can talk to me" seem so superficial. Like a friend that just wants to hear "stories" to feel up their drama quota for the day, rather than actually caring that my thoughts have emotions and feelings attached to them, and I really need someone to validate and understand me. And sometimes I find that I listen to much so every one comes to me with their problems, but when I need time to talk, no one is their for me. Everyone thinks I'm their best friend because I listen to them, but I don't feel that way about many people because no one listens to me back. So after writing you this novel of a comment, I'm just trying to say that I would love to listen to you anytime. (Because you are so much like me I bet you often feel the same of me - always a listener, never a talker)