The Story of Growl by Judy Horacek
Weight: ½ lb
Method of Disposal: Left in a parking lot in East Atlanta, along with an empty journal
My father has reminded me over the years about a time we went to Florida together as a family. My brother was social and made new friends on the day we arrived. He always did it really. It did not matter what time we got in or where we went. My brother always surrounded himself with new people right away. At that time, I did not have a lot of friends. At home, it wasn’t for a lack of trying. I was always socially awkward. At the beach, though, it was because I did not see the point. One day, he asked me why I did not talk to any of the kids my own age. I immediately responded with something along the lines of “Why would I want to get attached to any of them if I will never see them again?” I spared myself the heartache. That is how I have always been. I do not want to develop friendships that are not meaningful and long-lasting. It is really an unfortunate disposition, and it does not spare you from hurt. It probably just makes it worse.
I expect to grow “older and wiser,” but I am surprised to find that I never completely ousted the child. I am still her. Why make the investment if the return is not worth it? The pain of loneliness is nothing compared to the pain of loss. Loneliness even has perks. Lots of them, really. Maybe I missed some key life lessons or chose not to listen to them.
I am getting rid of The Story of Growl, which I enjoyed a lot when it was given to me, in recognition of the missed lessons. It is an adorable children’s book about a monster that loves to growl but is no longer allowed to. Eventually, she has to growl at an intruder and the people realize the value of growling and so she is allowed to revel in her passion.