The Many Kinds of Men

“I love each of my three girls differently,” Daddy always said. I finally see what he meant.

I have three men in my life: Dad, husband, dog.  Of course a few of these martians hover in my peripheral vision, but I don’t feel obligated to assign to them either affection or status. They just are.

I love my husband with a dutiful but sensual love.  He is probably my second closest companion of male persuasion.  He is cool and quiet.  His expression of enthusiasm is at its peak with a, “That’s good.”  Hours pass in statue-stillness behind a paperback by Robert Ludlum.

I prefer whirley-gigs, loud whoops, pink flushed faces and eyes that sparkle like diamonds when they are happy.  Fortunately, I express enough emotion for both of us.

I love my father with a deep admiration.  My father is easily excitable – usually in the form of tears.  Whether death or life prevails, my father’s face will shimmer with tears sliding down his lightly freckled cheeks.  Daddy revels in equations, in-congruencies and puzzles.  After 30 seconds of unequaled frustration I will write a poem about how much I hate puzzles.  He used to lean over my shoulder as I mourned over my math homework, “Isn’t this fascinating?”

My dog.  How do I love him?  He commands another kind of love – the truest Phileo love – a friendship rooted in common understanding.  Perhaps he has simply morphed into a miniature, furry version of me.  I often notice how owners look much like their pets.

We are both excitable.  Brave will put himself in bodily peril to be with me.  He has nearly hurdled himself through a car window when he saw me.  Once, I left him with my husband while I went Christmas shopping.  An hour later, my level-headed hubby called,  “Your dog has not stopped whimpering at the door since you left.”  I came straight home.

Brave will do anything I desire.  Puzzles or prose, I have his undivided attention and boundless affection.  He has helped me to solve dilemmas – where to go (the dog park), what’s for dinner (anything with table scraps), subject of my next story (my dog.)

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