Apr 4, 2010


"Communication is to relationships what breathing is to life,"Virginia Satir.

One of the areas of supp port I must create for myself is in the area of communication. I love to communicate, deeply, stimulating, intimately, interestingly. It is one of the areas in which Dwane is most compromised. He can still be witty and fun, but only self initiated. He has lost the ability to participate in the give and take of true communication. An example: Yesterday I was wondering conversationally if we had crossed a state line and asked, "Have we crossed the state line?" He responded, "New Jersey is next to New York." Huh??!?! It is interesting how his mind picks up the general topic, but not the specificities.

True conversation is an art that eludes most people. Most people engage in soliloquies, not conversation. I love the conversation I have with my own two children. Witty, respectful, intelligent, interesting and very 'give and take'. True conversation provides equal time for all parties to talk, and it provides the psychological space for allowing for differences in opinion, without attempt to convince. It is a delicate dance, and it is a delight.

I read research recently which said that the children of articulate mothers, who encouraged conversation with their babies, had appreciably higher IQ's when tested at age 3. Of all the gifts of good foundation I gave my children: good nutrition, strong values and character, finding meaning and purpose in life, giving back to one's country/universe, being efficient and responsible: the one I may find the most delight in is my conscious investment in the development of their verbal skills, and thus their intelligence. A memory of my son is an example of this. A friend was astonished when at age 3 my son told her 6-year old son, "If you don't leave me alone, I will have you ostracized." My son and daughter have such good mastery of gracious and intelligent verbal communication.

It is fun to reap the rewards of that investment in conversation with them. A delight for me in being with them for the past few days was in listening to their laughter and enjoyment of each other. It is heartwarming for me to see how much they have in common of the important areas of values and skills.

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