Parts of my body ache, it seems like an endless string of small stuff. First I tweaked my ankle, then my knee. Yesterday I was refereeing some city league basketball and since I was favoring my knee some, my gait was somewhat altered. I was running backward and just kind of fell down which sprang my wrist real good. I had been hiding from some grief that was wanting to be felt evidently.
Maybe that has happened to you. If you are an American you are probably an emotion stuffer and a small physical injury can bring stuff to the surface. At any rate I spent much of the night grieving things that had been there since childhood. It is beautiful to feel I must say. If we were not taught that certain emotions are better kept hidden we would have no trouble expressing whatever we are feeling be it grief, anger or joy. Yes even joy gets repressed. What are you so happy about dummy?
I am kind of in between things right now, not sure what to do next. I miss the streets a whole bunch but am also wanting something new. My dad has been in and out of the hospital lately with some heart problems. We had a good visit over Thanksgiving where he lives in Boise and I found out some things about him as a kid I had never known.
I figured out a while back, by intuition I guess, that he was a dreamer; raised in a community that valued getting a stable job and supporting a family. He had written a couple of stories as a younger man and had sent them off to Readers Digest which took some guts in my mind. You wonder if he had some encouragement to write more, he could have had a career in that field.
My dad’s temperament has always been gruff and charming. He was big, strong and tough as a young man and was known as someone not to mess with in the bars and taverns of his home town. But he is also a bright guy and sees people in an insightful way when he is willing to reveal that side of himself.
When my parents divorced and my dad left the house I became tight so to speak; a first class nervous nelly of a boy who felt over responsible for the emotional functioning of the household. I have sort of avoided taking on to much responsibility ever since. I felt like I had too much responsibility as a kid, what with watching over my sad mom and cranky little brother, with a lot of failures in my young mind at the time.
I have been running the over night shelter at the Reach Out Center here in town when the temperature gets low enough to allow the hobos a warm place to sleep. I feel like I am respected and well liked. But once in a while I get overly tight like when I was a kid. I do my best to breathe and pray my way through it. The same thing happens when I referee which is probably why I tumbled.
The other night I was out back on the porch drinking coffee and smoking when I heard from that young boy inside me. I found myself saying out loud, “Don’t leave me dad.”
It has been sort of a delayed journey for me fully integrating back into society after all those years on the streets, but I am making progress. I am allowing that little kid in me to worry less and play more. I think I am a dreamer like my dad and would maybe like to end up in film school some day or maybe teaching kids how not to worry so much.
Hobo John here. I love you with everything that I have. Are you a secret dreamer and who isn’t really? Well dream big and have fun why don’t you.
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