Dog Love

Love
Advertisement

It’s Not Magic

When we are asked to about the 3 magical words, we automatically think about “I Love You”. But there are another 3 magical words – It’s Not Magic. This applies for everything in life. Most importantly when you are getting an ill patient treated.  In short, it means to do the work and then be patient.

Let me give you an example of my dog. Earlier, when he used to fall sick, I would take him to the vet. The vet would treat him or prescribe some medicines, and I would expect results immediately. If my dog was not showing results, I would Google his symptoms and automatically assume the worse; followed by calling the vet and bombarding him with questions. That’s when one time; the vet told me “it’s not magic”.

This statement has been stuck into my mind ever since. I thoroughly understood what he was trying to say with these 3 words. From that day forward, I started applying these words even in other aspects of my life.

Don’t hurry. If you must, then hurry slowly. Nothing is magic. Everything takes time. Having patience means being able to wait calmly in the face of frustration or adversity or anxiety. Basically patience is essential in every part of life.

The moment the vet told me “it’s not magic”, I immediately slowed down. I had just got Junior treated. I had to be calm and keep my patience for the magic to actually work. Results take time, which I used to forget in the time of urgency. There are times when we have to take immediate decisions. But immediate decisions don’t mean immediate results.

Keeping calm and having patience also saves us from making wrong decisions or going over board when it’s not needed. As I mentioned, earlier I used to stupid. Imagining that the vet treated my dog, means he has to start being active immediately or illness has to be cured immediately, and if that did not happen, I would Google his symptoms, or sometimes even talk to people and ask for advice. Forgetting that they are not professionals and every dog is different resulting to different results and different forms of treatments. After all the chaos, I would put myself into deep anxiety and bombard the vet with questions and even ask him to do many other tests. Again, forgetting that he is an experienced professional, and if needed, he would advise me to get my dog tested further.

It’s not that the doctors do not make mistakes. They do. They are humans after all. But they are definitely far more experienced than us. And I am not even trying to saying that if we have a question or a doubt, then we shouldn’t address it. We definitely should. But then, once again, once we get the answers, we should be patient. Remember – it’s not magic.

Same way, when we start a new business or a new relationship, we cannot expect results from day 1. We should let it grow. Nourish it. Be patient. Do the hard and smart work. And then one day, our patience pays off. If everything was magic, then there would have been no meaning of life. Patience teaches us to even appreciate of what we have, how far we have come and eventually enjoy the results.

Each time now when my dog falls ill, I follow what the vet says and stay calm. No matter how long it takes to treat him, as far as my dog is getting better, I am patient. Most importantly, I have vowed to NEVER listen to idiots giving free unasked advice.

I also apply these magical words in my daily life. Even if I have fallen ill, or started a new side hustle, or have started a new relationship, I am patient. Just like “Rome Wasn’t Built In A Day”, the same way, nothing is magic.

Velcro Dog

A Velcro dog normally means a clingy dog. Sometimes, dogs are simply clingy because we allow them to be, by giving them a little too much attention. A dog’s everlasting devotion is one of the best traits. However, it is possible for your dog to be too clingy – a Velcro dog that sticks to you everywhere you go. Junior is a classic example of the same.

You might not mind if your dog rests their head in your lap every time you sit to watch television, but it becomes a problem if they exhibit destructive behaviors due to separation anxiety. But that is not the case with Junior. Since years I have been leaving Junior alone at home for work and come back with everything at its place. No destructions and no accidents (unless he is unwell).

Junior is simply clingy. When I am at home, he will follow me from room to room, and even in the bathroom. He just wants to be around me, because I give him a lot of attention when I am around. The reason for this behaviour is because Junior had developed separation anxiety after Casper passed away.

In true honesty, I love it when Junior is clingy. It gives me a sense of being wanted. His warmth and love makes me feel comfortable and stress-free. A feeling of being unconditionally loved is something that no words can explain.

Anytime I leave Junior at boarding/lodging when I am going out of town, I feel empty. I feel like a major portion missing out of my life. I won’t be wrong if I say that I am actually clingy. I have got so used to Junior sleeping next to me, that I get sleepless nights when I am out of town. I don’t enjoy my evening Tea alone, that I enjoy when Junior is sleeping on my lap and I am sipping on my favourite Tea.

It’s a Velcro relationship. We both are clingy. We both cannot do without each other. I don’t know if this behaviour is bad for the long term, but for today; it’s the best I can ask for.

Dogs that have anxiety issues often develop clingy behaviours. Interestingly, dogs can also become clingy if they sense our stress or anxiety, and I suffer from self diagnosed anxiety. Surprisingly, my vet has recognized this behaviour and often recommends me to “be prepared” as my dog is turning old. But no matter how prepared you are, you can never be prepared.

Let me not get into the negative aspect of this. For now, Junior is my tail. Wherever I go, he follows. Today, for the first time I let Junior walk off leash. I have never tried this before. But he followed me so well, I was shocked. I had never done this before because I live in a crowded city; too many people and vehicles all year round. I always feared Junior running away or meeting with an accident. But today he surprised me. Like a tail attached to my body, he kept walking with me.

It’s bedtime for Junior right now. And he is sleeping right next to my chair instead of sleeping on the bed in another room. The unconditional love and companionship he offered to me is something I cannot get from anyone else. I have tried to give him his space in the past, but failed. Either he got frustrated and stuck around me or I couldn’t manage the distance and clinged onto Junior.  

Having a clingy dog is not necessarily a bad thing. Many people wouldn’t have it any other way. I personally love having my dog by my side. The moment Casper died, I wanted to prove to Junior that he was loved and he was not alone. I wanted Junior to feel secured. And somewhere from within, I too wanted to fill up the void Casper had left. Fortunately, this did not create any behavioural issues with Junior as he sleeps in peace when I am not home. And also plays and stays well when he is at the boarding/lodging.

Clinginess is not all that bad unless your dog has some medical issues and displays it in his behaviour. If that’s the case, you should immediately jump into correcting the behaviour or show a vet. Otherwise, enjoy the love and affection from your dog; because such pure love can only be shared between a parent and a child.  

The Unspoken Words

The Unspoken Words between our dogs and us.

A pure bond where words are not required to communicate, but just eye contact is enough. The eyes are the windows to the soul – so so so true. It gives the opportunity to be completely present and available to whatever emotions are being conveyed.  

Dogs understand both, the meaning of words, and the tone used to speak to them – to a point. Though they do not understand full sentences, but the words we used to train them is what they attach the meaning to it. For example, the word “sit” is followed by teaching them how to actually sit down with the help of treats. But let’s not get into logic here.

I am pointing out at the emotional and funny part. Let’s start with the emotional one. As I have mentioned in one of my previous posts, there was a time when I wanted to end my life. I was all prepared and just sat one last time on the bed reflecting on all the life’s troubles and crying my eyes out. Somehow Casper understood what I was going through and immediately jumped on me and started licking my tears. He saved my life. He understood his Mumma was going through a bad time and his sloppy kisses would solve the problem. Indeed, it did – without me saying a word.

Even when I am unwell, and do not have the energy to play with Junior and keep attending to his demands of feeding him out of time food, he somehow understands and never bothers me. Somewhere he knows that Mumma is unwell and he should let me rest and recover. On other days, he doesn’t leave me alone even for a second. The moment I sit with my Tea, he feels that “how is she relaxing? She has to be on my duty at all times”. And he would keep tapping his paws on me till I give in.

The funny part is; I talk to my dogs in 2 languages – Gujarati and English. And they understand both of them (not in the literal sense). When I am in public and talking to Junior, it amazes people that my dog understands what I am saying.

But these are words that I speak. However, dogs do understand the emotions and we understand theirs. The unspoken words where we know that our dog is unwell or something is wrong, or when they need extra care and love, and vice versa. The eyes and the emotions behind it don’t require words to be spoken. And this can happen only if the bond is strong and pure.

Are the eyes soft, loving, compassionate? Is there hardness, anger, unspoken yet felt? What about fear, or frustration? Seen in the eyes, it’s so tangible in the air as well. Be willing to look deeply into those eyes, and take this wonderful opportunity to hold this dog with whatever intensities are expressed. It is an amazingly intimate opportunity for deeper relationship.

You dance; your dog dances with you. You are sad; your dog offers you kisses. You are angry; you dog sits in the corner of the room waiting for you to calm down. You are happy; your dog joins in to share the happiness. Same way, your dog is unwell; you get anxious. Your dog doesn’t eat; you skip a meal. Your dog is enjoying the walk; you are also happy.

In all this, no words spoken; just understood. The funny thing is, when we tell guests or non-dog owners that “my dog is hunger, or needs to pee or poop, or my dog is just playing”, and look at you with shock in their eyes, as if “how do you know?” We just know J

We can understand the silence and the emotions screaming loudly behind those eyes. Our bond is special, and it requires no words. Our unspoken words SPEAK THE LOUDEST.

I Feel Like Escaping

I feel like escaping. I live in a prison of my own thoughts. Imaginary or true, I have lost the touch of reality. My thinking keeps me away from the warmth of home. Confused, discontent, sad, I don’t have the answers. Only questions keep lingering for long. Is it the search for a greener grass? Or doubting if the shine I possess is not for me? Is it just in my head? Or my worst fears will come true one day?

Some days I am caged by the past. I sit and wonder, if I had done this, then that wouldn’t have happened. If I get a chance to go back and start over, I would do it a different way. Had I taken better decisions, then I would be happy now. Or if I would have waited a little longer, then I would be in a different situation now.

Other days I am consumed by the future. As the night falls, so does my motivation to stay strong. Many nights I am at the brick of falling completely apart thinking about the future. The overwhelming fear of the unknown; the uncertainty just scares me off. The dreaded thoughts of living without your loved ones, or suddenly going broke, or doing something incredibly wrong. Forgetting that Anxiety is a story teller, I still let it consume me.

Most of the days, I am completely cut off from the present. Just living! No motivation, no goals, no aims, just half in the past and half in the future. Self sabotage is a blade, one which I possess carelessly, always cutting, but never bleeding me out.

Am I the only one? Or are there others feeling and thinking the same? Does consistent bad time really play with our brain? Do we really get stronger and learn something? Or we just get used to living in survival mode. Is it always fight or flight? Or has someone seen the sun shining bright after thunder storms?

The desire to escape is fueled by yearning to run away from the unpleasant circumstance and situation. My problem is over thinking and trying to control the outcome. It’s a burnout feeling. When I was young, my dreams were to own a house, have a car, a family of my own and lots of money. Later it reduced to have at-least enough income to buy anything without seeing the label. Gradually it reduced to being healthy and seeing your loved ones healthy and happy. And now it’s narrowed down to having a peaceful mind and staying happy in whatever I have.

Sometimes life feels so overwhelming and claustrophobic that we long to escape, leaving everything behind and start new. Most dissatisfaction of our lives is fixable, or atleast can be improved. We know all the answers, yet we have too many questions. The resistance to change and trying to control the outcome is what puts us in a negative thinking cage.

I know it all. Yet here I am, trying to escape, drying up all the hopes some days for a better future. Feeling on and off has left me tired. Anxiety is bad. It tricks your mind into thinking that nothing will ever go right. It makes you think the worse case scenarios. A persistent state of worry and displaying excessive amount of fear leaves you drained.

But am I the only one? Is it really a tough time for many whether or not dealing with anxiety/depression? I know escaping is not the solution. And it should not even be. There are a lot of little things to be happy about and content with. For me it’s Junior and my family. However, some days I just feel like escaping. Just for a little while, to come back all charged up and face the world again.