This morning I was feeling restless and it was beautiful out, so I put on my shorts and sandals and took a walk with Nova in the Baby Bjorn. I even put her one little green sun hat on and off we went to the coffee shop. I am always required to bring back cookies for the other part of my family, the members who have teeth. So I stuffed those in my satchel and took the long way back, through the park. The breeze by the stream was lovely, and Nova takes deep breaths, like she’s taking it in. We passed by a lady with a big brown lab, who was eager to be friends, but I told him that I couldn’t go pet him, because he was a lot bigger than my baby.
I have a wandering mind, and it made me think of how, long ago, I used to be afraid of dogs. When we moved to my childhood home in CT, there was a family at the end of the block that had a big German Shepard named “Bear.” At eight, this dog terrified me. (It didn’t help that the mother snickered at me for being afraid of the dog–lessons I have learned on how *not* to be as an adult.)
Shortly after this my family got a puppy. She was a Welsh Corgi, and though she was not a big dog, she was quite the jumper. And I have never really been afraid of dogs since. Especially the big ones, it seems the bigger they are, the bigger their heart.
After that, my mind wandered again. I had never thought about it, but I am glad that I am no longer afraid of dogs. Generally, being afraid of anything limits you. And I quite enjoy petting the occasional slobbery goofy canine. And I guess it’s really due my parents, who chose to get the dog. And then I thought that Father’s Day kind of came and went, and I never really did much for it. (I did call my Dad, in case you were wondering).
So kind of randomly, I wrote my Dad a letter. I told him I was glad we got a dog when I was a kid. I found out I really enjoyed pets. And I’m glad I got to eat a lot of ethnic food, and really good food in general. And that I really, really appreciate that he paid my college tuition in full. Though we don’t always see eye-to-eye, and sometimes I’m a disappointment (mainly because I am not Christian, and I know it pains him), I have a really great life. He defined me, in a lot of ways. I like who I am. Some of his lessons were hard to learn, but now I am choosing to see the good.