There are many expressions about writers and the voices in their heads. Voices from characters they’ve created, voices from their muses and their ever-present self-narration as they go through life. I know all this because I am a writer myself. My post tonight is about a couple of voices in my head but they are the voices of people very dear to me whose wisdom has stuck with me.
The first voice is that of my father. His knowledge and advice while he was alive got me through many challenges in my life. Everything he taught me is still within me and his spirit guides me. Quite often I hear his voice in my head as I recall a favorite memory. I remember bowling with him when I was in my 20s I believe. He told me how to position my wrist for a better throw and every time I bowled after that, I heard his voice in my head telling me the correct way to hold the ball. I haven’t bowled in years but I know if I ever did again, he’d be there.
What my father’s spirit repeats to me most often these days are the words “Be patient.” I don’t know how often he said them to me while he lived but they are a constant presence now. When I am worried and anxious about something, his voice cuts in through my chaotic thoughts and reminds me to be patient. I never quite know what I’m being patient for but I do know that when I haven’t listened to his calm, knowing voice in my head, things have gone terribly awry. So I listen, even when I don’t want to, and I heed his advice.
My father died four years ago this October and with his passing, I was unable to receive any new advice from him. His voice only existed in my head and in my heart as memories. I missed those doses of fresh advice, I felt utterly lost without them. Thankfully, the powers that be have blessed me with amazing friends to help guide me when I am lost. And yet, something was still missing. Eventually the powers that be saw fit to bring a fresh, strong presence into my life who possessed a patience and a depth of wisdom very similar to my father. That person has become that missing voice in my head and a source of illumination in my life when I need it most.
That voice in my head came to my rescue this afternoon on the six-mile walk with Jazzmin. Alas, that story must wait for another day because the voice of my tired mind couldn’t do it justice tonight…