21 May 2011

One Woman and Her Dog....

Having found my new resting place and now experiencing a sense of domestic contentment which had thus far evaded me, I find myself contemplating gardening... putting down a different kind of root... potatoes.  Guess middle-age draws me to middle earth...I'm appreciating the wonder and nature of beauty... and the nature and beauty of relationships and interconnections.

Accustomed as I am to codependency, I have decided to embrace that small rem(a)inder of 'self-destruct' me which had longed for an unconditional love ...total acceptance... for such a long time.  It was not a wholly conscious decision - but there are no mistakes, we're told (all part of life's rich tapestry) - I became the guardian of a border collie pup.  I named her Cosy - she looked that way and I kinda feel that way inside whenever I think of her.  I believe she offers an antidote... an inadvertent healer of my injured self.  Pets, we're told, can teach us much about loyalty, trust, love without strings (she doesn't care how I look) and can lower stress just by being around.  Plus with a dog at least, a reason for walking, when one is needed and, with all pets I guess, a reason to get up in the morning.

In return, I offer her food, shelter, respect and yes, love.  A sense of healthy interdependency emerges.  It's made me question whether or not there was such a thing as a healthy codependency... but I reckon that's an oxymoron.  I guess we are all dependent upon one another for survival but, on a micro-level, when feelings and identities become entangled and enmeshed, we lose sight of who we are as individuals - existing only as "the other half" of a couple and experiencing enjoyment by proxy, i.e. only when our "other half is happy".  Claustrophobic relationships (as codependent relationships tend to be) invariably restrict the supply of oxygen as personal space is violated and we begin to feel constricted and no longer feel able to breathe freely.  Feelings of fear, overwhelming anxiety, panic and depression often ensue.  

Cosy is teaching me much about myself - a realisation dawns that I have been working on healthy interdependency in all of my relationships for some time now, breaking free from those chains which once constrained me.  Maybe it's time to dismiss the notion that 'healthy codependency' might even exist... and continue to live with the more realistic and definitely attainable notion of healthy independency - now that's definitely not an oxymoron....Seems to me it's a rather cosy fit.

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