Monday, June 29, 2015

Understanding

During our Skype conversation yesterday, Lyn really struggled for words.  She wanted to tell me about how she was having difficulty with her balance at church and she couldn't remember the words "aisle" or "pew."  She wanted to tell me about working with the physical therapist and how he wants her to try walking "heel-to-toe."  She declared that exercise "impossible!"  She struggled to identify the which part of one foot needed to touch the other.  She wanted to tell me about the people she knows who are going on vacation soon and when she couldn't remember where they were going, she just said "to the funnest place."

After our call ended, I got an email from Mom.  Lyn had stated that her "brain's just too tired to work right" and that she was concerned that I didn't understand her.  Mom assured her that I did because I had not asked Lyn to repeat herself or explain.  Lyn just smiled.

For the most part, I did understand.  I'm able to piece things together and long ago realized that even if I didn't understand her that just actively listening to her made her feel understood.  It doesn't really matter if I understand every single word she's trying to say.  I'm looking to understand the larger concepts and thoughts involved.  Getting stuck on the words would add to frustration for both of us.  It is like speaking with someone who is new to English.  Lots of grammatical errors can be made and incorrect words can be uttered but you still understand what is being conveyed and can successfully communicate despite the issues.

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