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August 1, 2013

Wednesday - Greet Everybody With All Your Heart

Diesel the dog getting pets from his Dad, Chris. Welcome home Dad!
Dad, Chris and Diesel
greet each other
We have seen a lot of loving feedback on our Facebook wall with words of sorrow and encouragement. I can’t thank everyone enough for their support. Much of the feedback involves comments about tears. I just want to say that tears are good but we certainly don’t want to cause mass depression among our loyal fans and readers!

I’m posting this series of blogs in order to help those of us who will be experiencing this very situation when the time comes for our own pets. If we watch and listen to this story, we might take something away from it that will help us in the future to better cope with inevitability making that heartbreaking decision; leading our beloved pets to the Rainbow Bridge.

Today’s blog is about what we can learn from our dogs. As Jennifer and family continue to cherish their last days with Diesel they have decided to sit back, listen and learn what they can from this happy, free spirited dog. As you read about Poooh Buster’s final visit to Diesel’s yard to service it, you’ll see exactly what I’m talking about.

Jennifer’s account of Wednesday really opened my eyes to how different we humans with all our baggage need to change our approach and thought process towards our canine counterparts.

Alex, our Route Supervisor was lucky enough to have one last visit with Diesel. We at Poooh Busters feel extremely fortunate to be a part of Diesel’s final journey with his loving family.

Jennifer writes:

Poooh Busters' last visit with Diesel the dog
Diesel with Alex from Poooh Busters
"Diesel is truly excited to see Alex, his Poooh Buster buddy, this morning. (Truth be told, he is every time, but I usually keep him in his kennel because he bounds and hops so much that he's wiped out for the rest of the day from his adrenaline rush.)

Today, however, when I heard the gate open and the pack began to bark their "hellos" (Stimpey howls, he's unique) I kept everybody inside except for Diesel.

Today is Diesel's day to live fully in the moment and be all that he can, no matter how much he might not be able to move later... it's "go hard or go home" kinda day.

Why? Because this is the week I have promised to "just listen" - to not interrupt... because the last few months have been stressful with us chirping at him to "sit down" or "stay" or kenneling him so he won't hurt himself... we think we are reacting because we love him but I have come to realize that we are really reacting out of fear.

Our own fear - not his. He's in the moment.

We are in the future or remembering the past when he'd slip (the past meaning 5 minutes prior to us kenneling him because he did slip, repeatedly, his back legs reacting as if his paws had skates and he was walking on ice, and that's what freaked us out in the first place thereby leading to the raised voice and commands for confinement)... we are his guardians and our human interpretation of that is to fiercely protect those we love from harm including any situations in which those may harm themselves.

But love isn't fearful - love is about understanding, listening, unconditional acceptance and is nonjudgmental... when I look at things from the "now" point of view and add in some unconditional love then I am able to see what Diesel taught me today.

** But first, because I am human...
I find it interesting that my instinct is to "fear" the consequence of actions so much that I have to verbally tell myself things will be okay before fully allowing myself to "enjoy the experience"... I marvel how Diesel has no regard for this "consequential resulting anxiety pre-curser" to situations - or as I have now deemed it, "CRAP", that humans seem to perpetuate and I wonder silently what DNA strand I am missing that would seem to enable the enlightenment our dogs have from their first tumble out of the cardboard box we put them in beside our beds the first night they come home - they just do... they don't think about outcomes...

** Secondly, because he's not human...
Diesel has heard none of these noisy thoughts stated above that have raced through my head and is simply wagging his tail and beginning to squeak out his excitement at Alex's arrival - like air being slowly let out of an over inflated balloon. **

Today I watched as our 75 lb. Boxer started tap dancing at the first sight/sound of Alex arriving - and then he did his cute little wiggle thing he always does and put himself front and center at the gate on the deck.

I saw him physically become ready to greet his friend with the enthusiasm we might reserve for a long lost relative, high school reunion, favourite rock star, or absolute royalty. Without a word, his message was clear: “I’m so excited you’re here. Please come and pet me. I’ve been waiting anxiously for your arrival.” He said it all with his heart, mind, body and soul - he was "all in"... and this is just a dog’s “hello" might I add...

So I held him until Alex was ready and had set his equipment outside the gate... then Alex started up the stairs to greet Diesel so it wouldn't hurt his back, but I said, "its okay - he'll come down" - then I restrained Diesel (like literally) from bolting down the stairs on two paws... but when he hit terra firma - I let him go.

I let him go.
Diesel the dog greet Alex from Poooh Busters with his usual enthusiasm
Diesel greets Alex with his usual enthusiasm

With my heart and all my human "CRAP" reined in like horses ending a chuck wagon race, I held back the chirping I have grown accustomed to immediately flapping from my lips and, instead...

...with all my love, understanding and appreciation for the "now" , I let him greet his friend with all his heart, mind, body and soul...

and he did...

...and they both loved every single moment!

...imagine if we all greeted every moment with our entire being - without fear of all the CRAP that inhibits us from being enlightened...

I started to think, how do I greet Chris or Alyssa or Gage when they get home? Occasionally with a big hug or excited welcome, but sadly, more often than I'd like to admit it's with an enthusiastic “Hey” or monotonous "How was your day?" as I peer up from my computer or cellphone or television show. I'm only 75% in...

Prior to this moment I didn't think about it, but now - in this moment - Diesel showed me that my "welcome home" greeting is really lame.

Gage the boy spends time with Baxter and Diesel the dogs
Gage with Baxter and Diesel
Diesel, today I am taking a cue from the world's greatest teacher... no more CRAP - I will greet each moment of this life with my entire being - I will honour their presence, show appreciation for the experience, I will be "all in"... I may even add the tap dancing and wiggling if your spirit moves me.... and I am sure it will...

We  U Diesel. With all our hearts, our minds, our bodies and our souls... your pack has always been all in.

('cept the drool - jury is still out on "enlightenment" with the drool buddy)"

I wish I could post all of Jennifer's words, they are very inspiring. One of my favourite quotes, "Getting what you you want is not nearly as important as giving what you have".

1 comment:

  1. Jennifer writes so beautifully with all her heart, soul and mind. I may be a big sobbing mess of tears when I am reading her posts BUT keep them coming...they are inspiring, beautiful and written from the heart. I LOVE what she is learning from Diesel and sharing!!!! I just lost my 12.5 year old Boxer a month ago, so this all hits home pretty hard. As I said before though...loving every word and the lessons learned are simply amazing!!! xoxoxo