And so it happened that I could not speak.
Not in the metaphorical sense but in the real 'I've lost my voice" sense. Some upper respiratory infection no doubt. For at least a week I went about the business of working and living in almost complete silence or at best with a soft barely audible whisper in response to the events and the conversations of my life.
An interesting time, that week. I watched the expectations of the people in my life drop as less and less of a response was expected of me. And I became content to listen with no attempt to formulate my own thoughts into words which would not be spoken. It's a fascinating thing. I heard so much more when I knew I could would not reply. And the people in my life seemed to say so much more. Perhaps the knowledge that I would not reply freed them from anticipating a supportive or a negative or even a neutral response.
And now I am able to speak again.
With the return of that amazing gift of speech, I am aware of silence as a choice and that with the ability to speak comes the need to sometimes choose silence.