Just A Word

Before I head out of town for a couple of weeks away, I’ll check my calendar for writing deadlines. And so it’s not uncommon for me to write a post for, say The Muffin, two, three, even four weeks out.

That was the case for this latest one, “The Importance of a Word.” I wrote it, scheduled it, and then forgot all about it. And then tragic events happened, and I couldn’t help thinking of my post and a word that has sparked national controversy, not to mention grave importance in this country.

No matter the platform–social media, a blog post, a letter to the editor–words spread rapidly. And just to be clear, I’m not preaching about the rightness or wrongness of your words or your beliefs. I’m just asking that you be mindful of what you write and put out in the world. That the next time you’re writing and shrug, “Well, it’s just a word,” I hope you’ll stop and remember how my mother set me straight.

It’s almost always more than “just a word.”


4 thoughts on “Just A Word

  1. I have to stop reading your blog posts on my phone while on the go, because I end up taking forever to return and leave a message. You are so right about the importance of words. I’ve always thought how wrong the old adage is, “sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never break me.” (I guess sometimes it was “names will never hurt me,” but the the former is, I think, the original version.) In any event, I never agreed with that. Words leave scars just as surely as “sticks and stones,” and sometimes the scars from words are deeper and longer lasting than any other.

    I guess we’ve all said or written something we’ve later regretted. Unfortunately, social media has certainly made sure these things will never be forgotten.

  2. Your post struck a chord with me. It’s so true that just one word can have a powerful impact for both good or bad. The older I get the freer I feel to express my opinions while keeping in mind that my words do matter.

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