Sorry, this isn’t a grand announcement for my upcoming romance novel. Although, now that I think about it…
Anyway, as this blog is half-diary, here’s another one of them personal-journey entries. This one ain’t as long as the others, though.. and it’s actually an upswing compared to the usual quests for knowledge. That’s because, this time, I’m actually writing about something that dawned on me today… something I’ve come to understand, instead of question :).
I’ve written about my lack of emotional expression, before, but it’s something that’s been an ongoing topic of interest for me. For as closed off as I can be from expressing myself, it’s a defective trait that I’m keen on finding the solution for. I’ve recently started a straight read-through of the Bible, and one thing that’s jumped out at me a number of times in the early chapters is the unbridled emotion expressed by the people in the stories. There is the mournful tearing of clothes, tears of joy and sorrow, kisses of celebration – it’s all there. And, I believe it’s in me, as well, but I can’t get to it. Even with kids, those little folks that I love so much, my ability to be completely open has been damaged. Last night, though, I realized something.
I can be that way with dogs :).
I know, it sounds odd – but I don’t restrain myself with canine friends. As I distanced myself from my family during my early teenage years, I’d turn more and more toward my dog, Katie. Instead of letting my parents in on my life, I carried on conversations with Katie as we went for walks. A bad day brought me home to give my dog a hug, instead of family. I don’t see this as the cause of my issue, either, but the effect. Katie’s passed on now, but that hasn’t seemed to affect my canine affection.
Last night I was spending time with my friend, Sarah, and her dog, Fozzie. Big, sweet, lovable bear of a dog. Naturally, though, I buried my face in her neck, unabashedly showed her every emotional reaction I had, just as I had it. With friends, family, and kids, I’ve found myself to be very restrained in how I express myself (physically, not verbally – though that is also part of the issue), but this morning, while reading another Bible story dealing with bold emotional expression, I remembered my interaction with Fozzie last night. I haven’t “figured myself out” or anything grand, but I smiled when I thought about it. Fozzie’s not the only dog I’ve been able to spend time with since Katie (hi Finn and, especially, Allie), but as silly as it is – it gave me a glimmer of hope. The funny thing is that, when I was a really little kid, a big dog jumped on me to play and licked my face.. cutting near my eye and scaring the crap out of me in the process. I was terrified of dogs for years after, but I got over it. So, perhaps, whatever keeps me from just freely expressing myself is just like that big, scary dog… and I’ll get over it :). Besides, if I can be that way with someone, even if that someone is a hairy, four-legged mutt, that means it really is all there inside me.
Now we just need to get at it :).