Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Our Therapy Dog

I've decided that Simon is the human version of a therapy dog.

More times than I can count, Simon has walked up to a total stranger, said "I want a hug" and when they oblige, he lays his head on their shoulder and says, quite firmly, "I love you". It's fascinating to watch the expression on people's faces as this is happening. It tends to vary by gender lines. Women usually smile and hold him closer and dish it right back. Men usually look slightly uncomfortable, awkwardly pat him on the back and say, "uh, thanks buddy". But I can also almost audibly hear the men's shell cracking a little when it happens.

I'm in this thing called re-evaluation co-counseling. The basic premise is most of the troubling behavior and patterns we have in our adult life are the result of getting hurt/disappointed/ignored, etc when we were really little that we didn't really get to express our feelings about. One of the most striking things I've learned is about how men, in particular, are crammed into tiny little boxes by society.  They learn really early that it's not okay to express/have feelings, only really get to have positive physical contact if it's in the context of sex, it's not really safe to be vulnerable, etc.

When Simon comes crashing through all those rules, when guys get a tiny dose of totally unconditional love that they didn't have to earn, jump through hoops for, or beat anyone up to get, it's intense. It's a little painful to watch how hard it is for some of these guys, especially ones that aren't fathers, but also really powerful. When it's not too hard for them or too uncomfortable, they get a light in their eyes that wasn't there before. One of our buddies at the bakery we stop by and visit almost every day recently told me that he told his therapist brother that getting Simon's hugs is the best part of his week.

We're coming up on the 3rd anniversary of Simon getting sick (August 1st). I'm not sure exactly why he got sick or what it all means in the big picture, but this much I know.
Simon is on this planet to break all our hearts open a little more each day.

Some pictures of the heart breaker

Getting ready for my last day of Ocean School (Summer school)

 Cowabunga Dude!!

Me and Uncle Barry

And my Uncle Larry

Look, both of them.

In repose with Uncle B

That bag of kettle corn is almost as tall as I am

But I will take it down one piece at a time

And that, dear Mama, is your life line. Here is where your love line settles in with Mommy.


sarah said...

I. Love. Your. Kid.

Thank you for sharing this story. I can only hope I will be on the receiving end of one of those hugs someday :)

Nate's Mom @ Nate is Great said...

LOVE this. Love love love!