#Reverb14: Prompt 5- Listening

I took a short break from Reverb14, but am back (in my effort to catch-up, I might skip around the prompts depending on ease of the question).

Prompt 5 comes from Isabel Faith Abbott.

Prompt 5-

What is the sound of your own voice?

This prompt made me immediately think of my dog Forrest. My husband and I rescued Forrest on December 6, 2013 from the Savannah Humane Society. Forrest is a collie mix and quite a character. He loves being sung to, Mondays, and wearing things. This Halloween, he had the opportunity to wear all the things when he dressed up as Wolverine (I dressed up as Jean Grey and walked him around on his leash. And yes, my husband accompanied us as a brooding Cyclops.)

Forrest trying out his Wolverine costume for Wag-o-ween

A photo posted by Josh Nichols (@technicalpickles) on


However, Forrest does NOT like sounds. He was three when he came to our family, most of his history unknown to us. We knew he had been an outside dog with 9 other dogs for almost a year before we met him, rescued off the street by a well-meaning dog owner who finally decided he’d be better off with a family who could pay more attention to him. It was also apparent he had been well-trained and taken care of at some point in his life. What we soon found out is that Forrest had picked up lots of anxieties to ordinary noises in the first three years of his life.

The dishwasher.

The SodaStream.

The click of the stove being turned on.

But more than anything, Forrest HATES the sound of my voice when I am on the phone. He barks and howls and runs to one of his hiding places until I end my call and return to what he wants in his normal doggy mom.

I’m assuming it has to be comfortable A photo posted by Josh Nichols (@technicalpickles) on

I always thought I gave good phone voice, but now I am not sure what my voice sounds like. Is it too shrill, Forrest? It’s certainly made me wonder what energy I give off when I am on the phone that I don’t when I am talking to someone in person. Somewhere in my life, I began loathing talking on the phone, something I am sure my parents never pictured occurring when I was 14 and spent hours talking to people on my pink neon phone that lit up when someone called (why didn’t it light up a special color when it was a boy?!?!). So if I am talking on the phone, it is likely under duress and I am on edge, or I’m asking someone for something or using my best customer service voice for a potential client. I am probably not speaking from a place of power.

Forrest has inspired me to remember the power of the sound of my voice and to be more confident in it, to own it. And to remember that the world is a better place the more you wag your tail, literally or figuratively

Forrest à la #hyperlapse

A video posted by Josh Nichols (@technicalpickles) on

 How can you wag your tail more with your own voice?

  • Noel

    Own it!! I love this.

    • I am always surprised by how much I am inspired to do things by my dog. :)