Self- Metaphor: An Animals BFF
I have always had a fascination with animals, especially exotics. Growing up, my father was called Tarzan; he would bring home random wild animals from the Everglades. Going into the woods, he wore no shoes, no shirt, had blue jean shorts and a full on mullet. Once he brought a baby raccoon and a six foot corn snake. Of course, being myself, I befriended the baby raccoon and kept him as a pet. The raccoon grew to love us and stayed for very long until he passed away. At such a young age, already I had grown a unique kind of bond and love for animals, just being in the presence of all kinds of animals made me happy
Once I was 6 years old, I envisioned myself as a veterinarian. Unfortunately, i learned the hard parts of being a Vet, which I had never thought about before. Sometimes Vets have to euthanize pets for a variety of reasons. I did not want to be a part of that, so for a long time I gave up wanting to be a Veterinarian. From then on, I decided to strictly have them as pets. And as I grew, I did just as planned, I owned a variety of animals, for example: A Rose Hair Tarantula, a Red Tail boa, many Ball pythons, Iguanas, Scorpions, a Flying squirrel named Jellybean, Turtles, Quail, and so on. For my future, I saw myself having a huge farm with all kinds of pets. I guess you can say I wanted to be an animal hoarder in the best possible way you can think of; a healthy type of way. But now I have decided to reopen my child dream and change it up a little bit. Instead of being a Veterinarian, I am going to open up my own Exotic pet store. But of course, their appearance wasn’t my motivation.
I took a deeper look into the animals for their characteristics, how they interacted within mother nature and how they befriended humans. I was astonished by how amazing and unique each and every animal was. That is how I noticed I had a lot in common with them. And went on a long journey of reinventing myself in an entirely creative way. I was finding myself in each animal I came across and it connected them to me even more than before.
The Chameleon, just like me, has the ability to hide when desired and to show emotions when they want. They demonstrate the art of body language and adaptations used to survive. They have so much intuition and have the ability to climb to attain ones goals, which requires much patience. To chameleons, body language is key, they don’t talk or make noise but use colors and body movements to communicate. I just love picking up on facial expressions, body language and just social cues all around just like them.
Another animal that has much comparison to me is a bird, but not any type of bird. A Heron is the specific bird i am speaking of. Since I grew up in a Spanish speaking family, Heron is called Garza, which coincidentally is my last name. De La Garza in English is From the Heron. The most outstanding feature of the Heron is its presence in the environment: water, earth and air; which means diversity. These birds have many skills, can live about anywhere, and are confident about it in the process, just like me. I adapt to my surroundings and make the best of it. Because of my family crest as a Garza, I take much pride of my surname and its deep roots.
My favorite animal, the Jaguar, is not just my favorite because of appearance. The Jaguar is my Self-metaphor, meaning that i have so much in common with them that I see them as my spirit animal. The symbol of the Jaguar is confidence, power, supreme focus and preparation. I trust my instincts and have a tendency to be an introvert. I avoid large crowd and social activities, but i am much happier in small groups or one-on-one situations. I see what others tune out, the dark parts of their human hearts, meaning that I am a good judge of character. The first thing people think when they see me is an unsociable and mean person, when really I tend to love the presence of my own. Did i forget to say I am powerful?