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Sunday, February 27, 2011

PetWise #6 - IS LOVE ENOUGH?

PetWise through Judy

2/27/11 #6 Is love enough…?

Katie Lou and Mom are both ready to tell her story now. They both have been reluctant because it’s sort of painful to remember this part of their time together. Katie’s ancestors were Lhasa Apsos that Mom would discover too late not only had physical/neurological problems, but also tended toward aggression.

“I was separated from Mom for a short period during my puppyhood, but she embraced me with her whole heart when I returned, even unkempt and flea ridden” Katie reveals.

“Early in my life I began teaching her what my boundaries were—for example, I wanted little to no attention once I had ’settled in’ for the night or I’d ‘come up fighting’. I always tried not to hurt her too much even in that state of grogginess. I also felt compelled to nip at other people sometimes,” she confesses, “until I became COMPLETELY unpredictable, which was doubly dangerous since I was too cute to resist >smile<. Eventually I had to be ‘quarantined’ during ANYONE’S visit!”

Then there was the shock collar incident Mom has a hard time talking about when she got talked into because Katie barked too much at a friend’s neighbors. I do believe she may have lost a little more of her mind over this. Katie suggests, “Humans really ought to try it on themselves sometime! When Mom reached her hand under my chin later on that day, without thinking, I reacted so fast I drew blood, but still Mom kept right on loving me!”

“Eventually Mom thought maybe I was having some sort of ear problem or perhaps even bad teeth because I did it again—a more severe bite and to make it worse, I couldn’t seem to let go this time!” exclaims Katie. This reaction was NOT understandable to either of them. Katie’s health was excellent, so Mom got her checked out and her teeth cleaned which helped for a while.

She goes on, “When I wasn’t having these episodes, I loved to love on Mom, cuddle, and be a normal canine ‘kid’ especially thrilled with ‘mothering’ all my stuffed toys. I even played with Black Jack sometimes. More often as time passed, though, I bullied him and made his life to be a bit like hell.”

So Mom simply had to do something. One of the pet communicators she sought out, who also tried a sort of electric type of therapy a sort of re-programming presumably, claimed to discover that in a past life I was devoured by my off-spring. “Well that would most certainly have given me a bad attitude for this life!” Kate shouts.

Another endeavor to control her behavior was obedience training, which was probably the most traumatic attempt to solve the problem. Mom was advised that all dogs need to be shown who is in charge. “Consequently for months we lived a nightmare nightly as Mom followed this program rigidly, keeping me CAGED through the night. I know she is now so sorry (more of that ‘guilt’) she listened to anyone other than her own heart. You see I had always had a phobic fear of being caged—even at the groomers.” She sadly admits, “It felt like I literally lost even more of her mind through this ordeal.”

“Our lives became so unbearable that Mom actually considered assisting me to LEAVE. Even when not caged, I began wandering the house at night barking at random and so Mom very rarely slept during these several years. She tried comforting me, even lying on the floor beside me, but nothing worked”, she continues. “I so much appreciate Mom for making a total commitment to me for my entire lifetime even at her own expense. But then regardless of this tormented time together she and I both knew we had an inexplicable bond that went even deeper than any of her other dogs.”

With sadness, she says, “Then just before my 16th birthday it was finally time…that day after my daily walk, my body suddenly also began to fail. I was weak and didn’t want to eat or drink anything. Although Mom nursed me for days and had a vet try, her gifted healer friend told her I trusted her to quickly give me release not only from this physical decline but the mental agony as well. Since I was nearly uncontrollable in spite of my physical weakness, the kind vet who put me out of my misery for Mom told her it appeared to him that I may have had a brain tumor.”

There are so many messages for everyone in this story such as all the what ifs of hindsight… inbreeding… foresight (medical advancements now available)… mostly though, that love transcends all…

P.S. she adds, “I’ll have Mom write about my angels sometime.”

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

PetWise #5

All One Spirit?

Mom really loves her time spent with Day, the spirit communicator who helped with our passing, Katie Lou and Black Jack agree…not to mention the amazing healing massages she gives. Well, she shared that a lone small white butterfly accompanied her on a portion of her walk the other day which we all know is simply going to always be Black Jack and her ‘thing’ (just like leaves skipping along with her are Katie’s messengers)!! Then Mom wanted to show Day the little red rock heart that she had discovered in the street a while back. It was resting on Kate Lou’s special shelf, positioned for best display. As they were admiring it, Day saying she’s always thought of it as a ‘gift’ to her, Mom noticed she’d inadvertently placed it right next to the red heart shaped name tag that Katie always wore—she was filled with gratitude to Katie for giving her such a precious gift, even if it took her a while to realize it was from Katie Lou!

Then Day shared a recent very special experience involving the spirit of a loved one who arrived ahead of her to assist with a big purchase! This began a discussion about whether spirits of loved ones are still here with us after they’ve passed on to possibly another life and time. After Mom’s experiences with us—all of us lately—she assured Day she thought the we must all have ‘moved on’ by now but because Spirit includes all of us from forever into eternity, they could surely still be with us, too—in more than one place/time at a given moment. So the two of them simply agreed to leave it a mystery, choosing to believe what was in their hearts that gave them the most comfort.

Then just yesterday Mom saw the lone white butterfly again...and this time ALSO, in a different location, what appeared to be a magnificent Monarch (although Mom isn’t up on butterfly species very well)!! She just knew this butterfly was very large with brilliant blue flecks in its yellow & black tail. It allowed her to get very close and she admired it fully.

Now, could we say maybe, just maybe these ‘gifts’ are confirmation that trusting we are always with our beloved humans, no matter what experience the ‘other side’ is providing, could be true?!

Or do we have to send bigger, more beautiful or whimsical messengers yet??!!

Monday, February 14, 2011

PetWise #4

PetWise through Judy

Time for a new ‘love’?

“Hey, this feels very strange! I finally ‘get it’ that I don’t have to rush home from my grocery shopping because someone is waiting, depending on me!” After living her life for others beginning with her birth family then husband and child, and always her beloved pets, Mom is finally just beginning, for the first time ever, to understand the mixed blessing of freedom. She can get a full night’s sleep and begin to give to herself.

While the reality is that there is NOT someone waiting to love her when she comes in the door or accompany her on her walks and trips can make her feel sad, in her case, it’s important for her to feel all the ramifications of that freedom so this time she can choose that responsibility for herself when the time feels right to her.

This can be a really confusing time for her, too. Recently celebrating her friend’s newly adopted Layla, who is the ‘spitting image’ of Bubbles, certainly gave her pause. She was left wondering, will she know when the right time for a ‘new love’ IS. Well, the obvious answer is that it’s unique to all humans AND us animals, too.

Bubbles, no longer able to remain silent, suggests, “Here’s one example of choosing too soon (which--no accidents--happened to be the RIGHT time for Mom and me!). I was adopted with the best intentions for the family’s only child, Robyn, when she was just 7 years old. As is so very often the case under those circumstances, after all the snuggling and cuddling on my adorable fluffy puppy hood, the child lost interest and my care and feeding fell to my Mom.”

“Years later,” Sugar I takes over, “Robyn felt ready so I became a member of the family. Then the Dad had Olga the Great Dane, Mom had Bubbles and the child had me, in the fluffy little white cockapoo body. I suppose we looked a bit like a canine version of the 3 bears!”

“Through the fun times and some health challenges, my best friend Robyn grew to womanhood, leaving for college and work”, Sugar continues. “She labored over whether I’d be happier in a more stable home, better able to manage my health, but she just couldn’t bring herself to make such a choice, my care and maintenance once again falling to Mom—for a while. Boy, I had lots of adventures with both of my girls for a whole 18 ½ years! Tenderly, peacefully passing in my child/woman’s arms was devastating to her after such a long, meaningful relationship. It was four whole years before she could even entertain the thought of ‘replacing me’.”

Thinking maybe a retriever would be a nice companion, one day Robyn found herself just ‘browsing’ the internet for such a dog who might need her. Sadly, finding no one in Arizona, she was about to turn from the computer when she decided to just check out one more Retriever Rescue organization.

“Well, it was instant passionate LOVE when she saw my beautiful red face!” a voice exclaims. “Only trouble was I was in Louisiana. And another slight problem—my name was also SUGAR!”

But the connection was so very strong there were no insurmountable problems.

“Surely some real magic was happening here”, the second Sugar goes on, “Turns out I was a pure Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever NAMED SUGAR II! Yes, my new Mom had thought of giving me a different name, but when she discovered it actually written down as Sugar II on my health records, it was sealed. We’ve been a perfect match from the git go, too.”

So we’re telling our stories today to remind Mom and anyone else who may be struggling with ‘WHEN is the right time for a new love’ to relax into memories of us until the mind will allow us through your heart to choose—whether it turns out to take just one day or a whole decade!

And Mom wants to add a special footnote today: “I wondered again why it felt like I was procrastinating finishing this article and understand now that my job is taking care of unresolved issues from my past in order to even more fully give as well as receive love the next time around. But even more importantly to remember to thank my sweet, troubled Katie Lou for showing me I am capable of a magnificent unconditional love and my devoted boy, Black Jack, for reaffirming that lesson for me.”

Surely there’s a higher wisdom at work here…