Photo Essay

Love is All Around, Even if We Can't See It

Missy's Early Opinion of Daddy

Love and hate are not opposites; however, indifference 'is' for both. Growing up I was not taught this--much less shown by example by most. As most people, if not all, I knew deep down as a child that there was more than the violence and abuses within my immediate family and small community--where 'dirty laundry' was only aired in the stagnant confines of one's house. Today, I am grateful for the few examples--during my youth--that represented by example of how to display the character traits within my aforementioned story-description. (There were a few: neighbors, teachers, friends, and other things.) However, with that being said, the best and most memorable examples were not people, but rather other participants of the nature inside and around us.

I appreciate all creatures, but dogs have always been extra special for me. I've always felt a direct connection to the 'Creator of all things' through them, and the smidgen of hope I had left was sustained by my presence around them. I spent a great deal of time in the woods with my friends; however, mostly by myself. It was a safe haven sometimes fortified by a secret hiding-place and/or a makeshift fort--preferably in a tree. There were many voices within the forests, and not all were audible. The sounds made by the: crickets, cicadas, frogs, birds, wind rustling through the trees, and rain and other water movement soothed my soul--providing emotional and physical refuse, at least for a while. Through these types of things, I gained the ability to hear other things with my heart and mind, and still do today--with even a greater understanding and ability. Eventually, I was able to regain a genuine and heart-felt connection with people--experiencing the kind of love and experience- that as a child- I knew existed-but, did not think I would find. These are the things that paved the way for the possibility of: marriage, children, artistic and teaching careers, friends, and being an active, positive member of society. (The path I did not intend or wanted as a 'angry young man'--like Billy Joel put so aptly) These are the things mostly responsible for why 'today' I love the life I was given, and work so hard to maintain-especially, by being an example to others through actions that exude that which was afforded --not just denied-- me. Peace and love to all. JH

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Hi there!

thought you might like this story!

http://jpgmag.com/stories/16008

Thanks,
—The JPG team

5 responses

  • charlie mclenahan

    charlie mclenahan said (1 Jul 2010):

    understand this so well, only my extra special animal that kept my world together was a mouse.

    Billy Joel .. and so it goes .

  • Maura Wolfson-Foster

    Maura Wolfson-Foster gave props (1 Jul 2010):

    Thank you for this JH.....you are an exceptional being. Love, ~ M

  • Maura Wolfson-Foster

    Maura Wolfson-Foster said (1 Jul 2010):

    my vote :)

  • Marie Sager

    Marie Sager gave props (3 Jul 2010):

    My vote. Beautiful story.

  • Rona Atlas

    Rona Atlas said (17 Apr 2011):

    inspiring.

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