Wiley's Wisdom

Joy: From the Ground Up

Meet Mrs. Prickles December 26, 2012

Some thought of Kahil Gibran as a prophet, a poet ahead of his time. While I would not completely disagree, it is my opinion that some of Gibran’s theories are simply elementary. He once wrote of joy and sorrow as a tango of emotional experience, symmetrical and reliant on each other for survival in one’s emotional journey. “Joy and sorrow are inseparable,” he wrote, “together they come and when one sits alone with you…remember that the other is asleep upon your bed.”

2012-12-21 09.45.28Meet Mrs. Prickles. Sorrow and joy in one fabulously plush little package. She is my go-to stress reliever…a source of playful fun with my people and a source of relaxation after a long day.

My adoptive parents have seen to it that she’s not the first of her kind…there has also been a Mr. Prickles, and most recently Flea, but I think Mrs. Prickles might be my favorite so far. She is not the only toy in my toy basket, but she is the first one I reach for to entice dad into a game of fetch and the last one I play with each day.

For that reason, she is also the toy I choose to unconsciously suck on for hours at a time…my mom hypothesizes that I associate Mrs. Prickles with fun time with my people, so I calm myself by “nursing” on her plush little body. I know this sounds crazy, so its a good thing she has a master’s degree in psychology. Sure, its not doggie psychology (is that a thing?), but I know she understands me like no other human does – through both loving eyes and a thoughtful mind.

In fact, I vividly remember her reaction the first time I started nursing on Mr. Prickles…it was a blustery winter day a couple months after I had settled into my new home. I started sucking on Mr. Prickles, mom pet me, I moaned, and she seemed so worried. She immediately pulled out a much smaller version of the moving picture window in the living room (I believe she calls it a laptop…) and started typing furiously. The most common result of her search was that I was most likely weaned away from my birth mother too early or I had been abused. I’d rather not relive either of those memories, but I wish there was a way I could tell my mom she is right that both are part of my past.

I was about two years old when I met my adoptive parents for the first time, and there are a lot of things that happened in those first two years I would rather not remember…I have my reasons for scavenging for any and every food scrap that falls to the floor during a meal, and its no secret that I have a noticeable aversion to leather belts, power tools, and vacuum cleaners. But those painful memories of the past serve as a constant reminder to cherish the present….and so it is. Prophetic or otherwise, Gilbran was on to something simply complex…there would be no true joy without sorrow.