Wednesday, September 3, 2014

What I Wanted Most

What I wanted most, I never got. Sounds like a bleary-eyed drunk crying over his beer, doesn't it? But now, when I hear this prototypical remark in jokes--"My wife doesn't understand me"--I believe I know what is going on. Of course she doesn't understand you, and you don't understand her either. No lack of love is implied here. There's plenty of love in both cases. But love is not understanding, and some of us need, not approval, but to be known.

Old people are often asked if they have any words of advice they would like to pass on. It's a standard question that young reporters ask of those turning 100. This is an opportunity for great wisdom to come forth, hopefully with a humorous twist, to make it more newsworthy. I am a mere child of almost 79, but I would say this in such a hypothetical interview, "Don't expect to be understood, even by those who love you most."

For love is all around us. It is such a natural thing. Little girls love their dolls, little boys love their favorite toys. But the question "Do you understand your doll or toy?" would never be asked. I fear that our natural desire to love or to be loved has no counterpart in the desire to know and be known. So those who long for this will go to their graves never having achieved it.

Animals to the rescue! As a child I once lay down on my bed crying. My cat jumped upon the bed and came towards me. Perhaps to her I was like one of her mewing kittens. She knew that if she licked me enough, everything would be ok. Later, my dog would give me that special look that said, "Why don't we go for a long walk? It works for me." Blessed animals! Just knowing that they care helps so much. Maybe that is why God made them.

1 comment:

  1. I would have to say, Amen, on the animals. I couldn't live without them. Their love is so strong and deep and no words are ever needed. As I am aging, I have finally realized that no one really cares. I used to seek approval and want to tell my story (s) to everyone. After many heartbreaks, I learned to just be with my cats and dogs. They never judge me, but they love me unconditionally. I am married to the man I love. It will be 30 years next month, God willing and the creek don't rise.I love him with everything I have and I am so grateful for him. But it wasn't until my late, beloved father passed away almost two years ago, that I stop seeking approval. I was then free. My mother had passed away 15 years ago. I am free now and do not care what people think of me and I am even freer now that I have learned that people don't really care. I was a fool, but with age comes wisdom.