Beth has never been much of a conversationalist but often she wouldn't talk at all. In fact, for most of her life she'd cry when something didn't go right. Or when something didn't work the way she wanted it to.
Or she got her feelings hurt.
Or someone cut in line in front of her.
Or someone got a bigger piece.
For 99% of the things in her life she would just stand there and cry. Or she'd put her head down, walk away and cry.
I've told her, our whole family has told her, "Beth you need to talk. What's wrong?" "Beth, use your words."
We've tried encouraging her, "Beth, we can't help you if you don't talk to us." "Beth if you want some help, you have to ask. Use your words."
Finally, after years and years, I gave up. When something happened and she would start to cry, I'd look the other way. Or I'd walk away.
Or I'd just stare at her.
She knew what I was gonna say anyway.
Eventually she stopped crying but she still wouldn't use her words. Even if she just wanted to say Hi to someone, she'd walk up to them and just stand there. Often they wouldn't see her and they would talk to someone else or they'd walk away but she never said a word!
I saw her the other day at church - I so wished I had taken a picture but I was talking with someone else and didn't want to be rude - but I heard some women laughing and I glanced over to see Beth standing there with 3 other women, she had her phone out and she was showing them pictures! I heard her tell them about our trip to Snoqualmie Falls the weekend before! And these women were all facing Beth, she was leading the conversation!
Then last night at the grocery store, she was paying for her groceries and I was helping the bagger (he has special needs) with some special food items and as I finished and looked up, I heard Beth say something that I couldn't quite make out but then the checker laughed and said, "Oh you're right, I'm so sorry!" and he handed her some cash back. Beth said thank you and we were on our way.
Before we headed to the parking lot I stopped and told her how proud I was of her for speaking up. I told her she talked and everything worked out great; that she didn't cry and she got what she needed. "That's excellent Beth!"
She smiled and said, "Yep."