Don't feed OCD, phobias or ticks...
There's a television show that I used to watch called Monk. That show was the inspiration behind my original blog name "Here's the thing...". If you've been reading me a long time, you'll remember me using it as a tagline. Anyway, the character Monk was a crime detective who had OCD, and multiple phobias which made the show very funny.
Christopher has Monk tendencies. Though he does not have diagnosed OCD, he has multiple phobias. Because of this, I intentionally withhold information when it's necessary and I have an undercover nickname for him. Monk Johnson.
Last weekend when we had nice weather, and he was bored, I said, "Let's walk the trail." As nice as this little area is in our neighborhood, we only do it once a year if that. We absolutely can't go in the spring because of the pollen. We can't go in the fall because it's still "summer". The best time of year to go is now.
Why winter? See Exhibit A.
That yellow sign says, PLEASE Don't Feed the Ticks!
A few years ago, daddy was visiting after winter, after pollen, and before summer.
The weather was nice and he had never been on the trail with us, so we decided to walk through.
Christopher hadn't eaten breakfast yet but wanted to go with us. I said, "Grab a pop tart and bring it with you."
So that's what he did.
When we got there, daddy paused at the sign. "Ticks?"
I tried to rush Christopher past the sign as I always did, because I wanted him to proceed and not worry about what was in the woods. He said, "What do they mean, don't feed the ticks?" I looked at daddy and shook my head and stretched my eyes to silence him. I said to Christopher, "Don't worry about it."
As we entered, Christopher was walking slowly. I said, "Come on son. Why are you walking so slow?" He said, "I'm worried about my pop tart. I don't want the ticks to get it." Daddy and I pressed our lips together to hold back laughter. I said, "Well hurry up and eat it." He proceeded to gobble up the pop tart like he was cookie monster.
All the way through the trail 'Monk Johnson' asked more questions about the ticks, to which I replied "I'll tell you later."
Fast forward to the present day.
I said, "Let's walk the trail" and we decided to ride our bikes.
We both paused at the sign. In my mind I said, "Alligators?" I swear that sign wasn't there before.
We entered. I reminded myself that it was "winter" and everything on that sign is tucked away somewhere.
In my mind I flash forward to kids being kids, turning over rocks, poking sticks in the river and running in the woods. This is a nice trail but I don't want him in here unchaperoned.
I snap out of it as a voice a little deeper than three years ago asks, "What exactly do ticks eat?" I said, "Hold on let me take your picture", intentionally withholding information until we were on our way out.
I took some pictures along the way because knowing Monk Johnson, after our tick conversation, he won't be interested in going back.
So here's the thing...
I may have said, "Ticks eat people. They suck your blood and they give you a disease" along with too much information about not going in there with his friends.
I didn't volunteer that everything would probably be just fine if he stays on the trail.
He's probably not going back, so I have nothing to worry about.
Don't feed OCD or phobias, unless necessary.