800px-A_woman_thinkingI protest pretty hard when friends accuse me of over-thinking. I’m a deep thinker, sure. I tend to run down paths that others can’t even see. I know that, while other people are out marching to a different drummer, I’m over in the corner dancing to my personal mariachi band. I can’t see how any of that has anything to do with over-thinking! It’s just my unique style shining through.

Then, there was the other night, as I was preparing to go to bed. For some reason, I noticed that my “endearing nicknames” for my pets were all rather derogatory. For instance, I call the dog “mutt-mutt.” The cats I call “turkey-butts” or “stinker-butts.” Come to think of it, I referred to my son as “turkey-legs” for a year or two.

I started wondering about the significance of using what are generally considered put-downs as terms of endearment. Is there some unresolved conflict that I need to consider? Do I feel put upon when I’m caring for the pets (or my son, for that matter)? Do I really desire to just be a hermit and be left alone? Are there two different sides of me — one outgoing and social, the other reclusive and quiet — at war with one another?

It was about at that point that I realized I could spend years (at $100 per hour or more) on a psychoanalyst’s couch (although I think chairs are preferred these days) and never unravel the mystery. Maybe it’s just not that big of a deal. My son knows I love him, and the animals seem happy and content.

I wonder if that’s what my friends see when they say I over-think things.

I’ll have to go think about that….