Friday, June 01, 2012
Finding Contentment via My Dogs
My doggies are asleep on the carpeted floor beneath my desk chair as I write, one on either side.You'd think the tap-tap-tapping of the keys would keep them wide awake, but the opposite always happens: the rat-a-tat literally acts as a kind of 'white noise' and they fall fast asleep, whether I'm writing at 7:00 A.M., 5:00 P.M., or 12:00 Midnight. I think these two German Shepherds offer opposing sides of "psychological nature". Our female, 4-5 years-old (she's a rescue, so we don't know for certain her age)"Afton" (so named, because that is the name of the road she and her five puppies, were found wandering on), is outgoing, gentle, and always wagging her tail. I like to think she's my center, that she embodies alot of me, but this could be projection, or worse, ego. "Agent", our male, approximately 2 years old, is a black-and-tan-German Shepherd, rescued, just like "Afton", but the similarity ends there. He's much darker, in both hue, and temperament. It's not that "Agent" is mean, he's just extremely wary. Once he sees you are not a foe, he'll approach, his head down, submissive, possibly wetting himself when you reach out to pet him (we often introduce folks new to "Agent", to him outside, since his peeing is pretty unpredictable). So one dog is open, trusting, friendly.The other? Closed, anxious, (possibly still reeling from the incredible neglect, and obvious abuse we were informed of, before we adopted him), not particularly friendly. While "Afton" is much like my outer persona, "Agent" has a few of my not-often-seen, less-than-desirable qualities: I too, am often very unsure; insecure about what I may have, if anything, to offer. Perhaps it's what I told my Mom, the other evening, "Is this a Middle-Age crisis?...but hey, at nearly fifty-five...unless I live to be A Hundred and Ten, how can I call this 'Middle Age'?! Here's the thing: it doesn't matter whether you are outgoing, or shy; optimist, or pessimist; young or old; you can still commit. I guess I'm giving you kind readers and followers of this blog, advice....but I'm giving myself a bit of a pep talk, too...I mean, if "Afton" can survive neglect and abandonment, and "Agent" can survive neglect and abuse, and what separates them is how they cope, well, then, might not we all learn from them? I mean, sometimes it takes warmth (my smile; her wagging tail) to engage, to get others to open up,(and become my friends; offer her a treat) and other times, restraint (my mouth shut; his head lowered), in order to listen, and hear (and learn more about my friends; offer him a treat)what others feel. We're (hubby and I, who parallel our dogs in myriad ways and...that's for another post)working on socializing our dogs with other doggies, taking them to dog parks, enrolling them in classes, so they can have a happier, better-adjusted life. In the meantime, I'm working on me: writing, writing, writing, and hopefully, becoming happier, better-adjusted. Peace, kids.