Thursday, July 17, 2008

Something to Cry About

One morning recently we enjoyed a rare treat of breakfast in a restaurant. Ron normally cooks something special on weekend mornings, but a planned power outage meant that we would have to wait until noon for that first cup of coffee. So we chose a place outside the blackout area and had a delicious meal.
As we lingered over our third cup of coffee, a family was shown to the empty table beside ours. A man, a woman and two preteen children sat down. The boy was clearly sulking, his face screwed up in a frown. The woman, who was sitting beside him, said in a stern voice, "Now don't you start crying or I'll give you something to cry about!"
Ron and I exchanged glances, abandoned our coffee and left. Neither of us cares to be around children misbehaving in public.
Do people really still say that to children? I haven't heard that particular expression since I was little. Back then it was extremely common, and effective too. I quickly figured out that sulking and crying were very unwise and learned to control my emotions at a young age.
That included complaining about discomfort. If I protested when the tangles were brushed out of my hair, well, we all know there's more than one use for a hairbrush. Even legitimate distress from injury or illness was likely to result in anything from moderate disapproval to physical punishment.
So since stoicism in the face of pain resulted in parental approval, if not affection, I resolved to be very brave, to conceal any number of foxes beneath my cloak and to endure silently whatever hurts came my way. I was passionate about cowboys back then - those were the days of Roy Rogers, Gene Autry and Hopalong Cassidy - and everyone knows cowboys don't cry. I could be just like those cowboys.
It may be that this is why I am the way I am; then again, it may not be. I am not sexually aroused by any painful experiences other than spanking. Having my teeth drilled without a local anaesthetic, for example, wouldn't turn me on. But I am an extremely co-operative patient, and what happens is, I develop something of an emotional attachment to any doctor or dentist who is doing something unpleasant to me.
Not too long ago I spent a fairly difficult half hour undergoing what should have been a simple medical procedure. The specialist involved was having trouble, and frequently asked me how I was doing. Each time, I answered, "Fine." He finally said to me, "It's all right. You can say it hurts."
I didn't know what to make of that. I have no inner armor to protect me from kindness. But cowboys don't cry.


Paul said...

Hermione, and I hope that you never develop armour against kindness.
Roy Rogers, Gene Autry and Hopalong Cassidy, I've seen all three wipe a manly tear away.
So if a tear should escape, don't worry you are still as good as the movie cowboys.
Warm hugs,

dwcmike said...

Hermione; Part of our upbringing is so very similar. Thus, being stoic when something unpleasant occurs, shields us, and allows us to persevere. Thus, it is with difficulty, that I am trying to not be stoic when obtain the full benefits of each spanking.
Haven't heard about your new treasure being used. Hope it happens soon.

smith said...

What a heartfelt blog. We all build up our armor to protect us against all the hurt we have to endure. I do the same thing with medical such an attachment. Thanks for sharing...Cowboys might not cry but Cowgirls are allowed.

big hugs,


Hermione said...

Thank you, everyone, for such kind, caring comments. I feel better for having shared that. And you did make me cry, a little.


Terpsichore said...

Thank-you for sharing yourself.