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be careful what you say… somebody might listen

August 30, 2010

I have written about our daughter’s mice before – there is something very “Hitchhiker’s Guide” about them. Before I came to realise that I might learn something from them I had developed a firm view about them. The first pair we had were OK – not my personal choice of pet, but I kept that view to myself.

When one developed a tumour that eventually resulted in a visit to the vet, I was supportive of a decision to find a replacement and did not voice any objections.  While the odd bit of peace and quiet is nice, I don’t want to live alone and I don’t want the mouse to have to either.

I felt that I was understanding when not one but two mice came home because all the girls in my life felt like they should have a mouse to call their own.  They had already settled in by the time I discovered they were there, so there wasn’t much point in saying anything.

When the newcomers picked up a mouse virus and one by one all three developed nasty coughs that saw them head off to the vet and not return, I thought we had experienced enough to move on. A moment’s silence marked their passing.

When new mice and a new cage (the virus responsible for the cough is apparently impossible to remove once it has taken up residence) appeared one afternoon it was time to give voice to my thoughts on the matter.

“These mice are a bloody waste of money. It has got to stop!”

That was quite a while ago now. Mother’s Day has been and gone. We still have mice – maybe even newer ones again. I don’t know to be honest and nobody listens to what I say anyway.

Or so I thought.

When I was cleaning up the other day I found a Mother’s Day gift from one of our daughters. Simple. Hand made. Inscribed with words that knocked the wind out of me in a way that only a revealed truth can…


thank you for wasting money on the mice

People do listen to what I say. They listen very carefully and reflect on my particular choice of phrase in ways that I might not care to imagine. They tell other people what I say (even if only indirectly). It can change the way other people see the world.

The words I choose to use influences what they believe to be valuable and what they then might come to know as having no intrinsic worth.

It is a lesson I have been slow to learn.

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One Comment leave one →
  1. Susie Surtees: Inner Exploration Blog permalink
    August 31, 2010 4:53 pm

    A salutary tale and beautifully touching a tale. The mother’s day card is heart-melting …

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