Welcome. Thank you for joining me today:)
I have a nice treat…Kim, the author of the blog Talon , is here to share some Wisdom with us..
When I visit Talon I am full of wonder and awe at the gifts shared there…glorious photos, poems, stories… all pull at my heartstrings…I experience a vast array of emotions depending upon what is presented…I leave inspired and enriched…and I celebrate the gift that has been shared…
Thank you for sharing your Wisdom here with us today….
First of all, thank you so much, Joy, for asking me to do a guest post. I always enjoy your positive energy and your honesty in sharing your life journey and life experiences with your readers so I’m truly honored to contribute in a small way to your beautiful blog.
When Joy asked about a guest post, I thought of her Wednesday Wisdom posts. Wisdom comes to us in different ways – some through experience, some through observation. And some of the earliest wisdom I learned came from an unusual non-human source.
When I was seven, my uncle (a Sergeant in the army) was sent from a base in Ontario Canada to a base in Germany for five years. This meant my aunt and my two cousins would be joining him. It also meant that their beagle, Spotty, would have to be quarantined for quite a few months if he were to accompany them.
My aunt was a dog lover. And she had fallen in love with Spotty (then aged 2) when she found him at a local pound. His original owners had abandoned him. They no longer wanted him. My aunt did and Spotty adjusted well to his new home. I learned the lesson of compassion from my aunt and acceptance from Spotty. He was always a welcome visitor in our home (except, perhaps, by our Persian cat, Peppy) and my younger sister and I loved when he came to visit. We would immediately insist on taking him for long walks, lavishing him with pats and hugs and pretending, if only for a little while, that he was our dog. He soaked it all up.
Because Spotty had been cast off and had spent time in confined quarters before being adopted, my aunt knew that he would not tolerate the months of quarantine necessary before he could be with them on the base in Germany so she asked my mother and father if they would consider taking Spotty. Spotty was then six years old and most of his life had been spent in my aunt’s loving home. This was my first lesson on personal sacrifice. I knew how much my aunt loved Spotty and I knew how much Spotty loved my aunt. They say rescue dogs are always grateful and you could see that gratitude in Spotty’s big brown eyes every time he looked at my aunt. I know it broke my aunt’s heart to leave Spotty behind.
Spotty joyfully slid into his third home as if it had always been his. He taught me about acceptance. He didn’t pine or mope, but adjusted to his new life happily and soon became my constant companion. He would follow me to school and would, when told firmly at the school gate that he couldn’t come into the playground, reluctantly head home, tail down, casting reproachful looks over his shoulder. I knew he would have happily sat in the classroom at my feet if it had been allowed. I asked the teacher. It wasn’t. And at lunchtime he’d be sitting by the gate, waiting to accompany me home for lunch and then back to school again to be told sternly to head home once again. But he was always waiting at the gate when school let out of the day, with a wagging tail and raised ears, and a titled head, waiting for playtime to begin. He became such a fixture in my life; I couldn’t remember life before he was there. He taught me the valuable lessons of loyalty and unconditional love. As if he knew that our proud Persian cat, Peppy, was the queen of the house, he dutifully ignored her and I learned about tolerance. Cat and dog declared an “indifference” truce.
By the time my uncle and aunt and their family returned to Canada, it was clear that Spotty would remain with our family for the rest of his life. My aunt adopted a new dog – a black woolly dog named Rufus who was a delightful dog, but definitely no Spotty.
When I was thirteen and Spotty was now a stately (yes, even beagles can be stately) senior dog of twelve, he taught me the lesson of courage. I was sitting on our front porch reading, Spotty lying nearby, when a large dog—one I’d never seen in our neighbourhood before—hackles raised, growling menacingly, came across the front garden and started up the steps. I wasn’t able to reach the front door as I was across the porch and the strange dog was now at the top of the steps blocking my escape. Until then, I’d never been nervous of dogs, but this dog was snarling and snapping and I admit I was terrified. Without hesitation, Spotty took it upon himself to see off this aggressive, unwelcome visitor. An ugly dogfight ensued, but Spotty, all thirty pounds of him, took on this large dog without a second thought. Spotty was victorious in protecting his family and his home, though he sustained multiple wounds. He was my hero. He survived and thrived and lived another four happy years.
When I think of wisdom I’ve gained, I always think of Spotty first and foremost. A small dog with a huge heart who taught me some of the most important lessons of my life – compassion, sacrifice, acceptance, loyalty, tolerance, courage, and the most important one of all – unconditional love. My wise friend, Spotty, who added a beautiful element to my childhood that was unexpected and rare and never forgotten. Thank you, Spotty.
Thank *you* Kim for sharing such a beauty filled story…
May we be open to, and aware of, unconditional love as it is placed in our lives….May we graciously receive unconditional love as generously as we share unconditional love…