|who's photobombing whom?|
This will come as a surprise to probably no one: I am a very emotionally needy person. That's part of why I'm really happy to have a dog (see image at right), because he is the only person I know who is not only willing to but enthusiastic about spending every moment of every day with me. (And frankly, he's the only person in the world I never get bored of.)
In the last few weeks, he has remained my most frequent companion, and just about the only person with whom I share all of my feelings. I want desperately to be able to be that open with the human people in my life, but I just can't. I think "oh, I want some company, I want some hugs" and I would take them if they were offered, but the fact of the matter is when I'm around other people right now I'm either desperate to get away from them or spending so much energy trying to hide how I really feel that I lose the ability to really pay attention to them.
This has been more true with random casual encounters with friends than with the few intimate experiences I've had since I've been grieving (I'm certainly not planning my escape route while I'm curled up with somebody). When I see my friends they want to hug and console me, but I don't make eye contact, and am unusually hedgy when answering questions*. My body language is pulled in, and even when it's not there's still sorrow in my eyes and my face is flat.
But my dog, coincidentally named the same as my father but with different spelling, remains steadfast. Sleeps next to me. Watches internet with me. Follows me around the house, and demands to go with when I leave it. Sometimes he gets his way too. He is, by the way, in perfect health (except for that eyeball thing and the skintags hanging off his butt... oh, and going to my dad's house gave him fleas but we took care of that), at the ripe old age of 13.
It's not the same as chats, or texts, or visits with hugs and giggles (sometimes more), but I don't feel the need to hide my feelings from my dog. I don't feel like he's going to give me flack for needing him to be right next to me, because he needs to be right next to me. He doesn't understand human social convention (thankfully), and doesn't know to consider my vulnerability a bad thing. It's not possible for him to reject me. We're packmates. That's FOR LIFE. So, I'm safe here next to him, even when I'm scared of everyone else. And yes, I have human packmates who wouldn't reject me, either, but the place I'm in right now has a lot of insecurity built into it and the more I feel things, the stronger my insecurities are. It's a thing.
*For the record: how I'm doing is shitty. How I'm holding up is barely. And if I could think of anything that I needed from you I would ask, but I can't so if you want to help be creative and think of something so that I don't have to.