1 month before Bear past she was attacked by another dog and lost most of her right ear. It took two men to get the other dog off of Bear and because it was incredibly traumatic those 5 or so minutes felt like a lifetime. I took a LOT of guilt home with me that day and carried it around for quite some time. I felt as though I had failed Bear, a dog that had given me her trust after 14 years of abuse and neglect. My duty was to protect her and here she was injured and terrified after fighting for her life.
It happened at the shelter where I now volunteer. We were there to visit and see the lady that helped us find Bear when she was last abandoned. This dog had pushed through the gate as someone was walking through and she A-lined toward Bear. Those moments to follow were filled with painful moans and fear of the unknown, would she survive this? She did but looking back I’m almost positive she held on because of the intensity of my own grievance.
Almost a year has gone by and in that time I worked through the pain arriving at a more peaceful inner place. Along the way as I would share this experience it was often said that this animal should be put down. Overwhelmed by everything I didn’t put much thought into how to help this other animal but certainly I did not feel in any way this life should be jeopardized because of this incident. Surely, there was much hope for the future of this animal with total commitment being key to her rehabilitation. Well, Great Spirit gave me the blessing to continue this journey and hers. She has been brought back to the shelter where I am on the adoption team. I mean this was huge! I didn’t allow myself to think of the million ways our meeting could go, instead promised myself to be fully present while it unfolded as it were meant.
I was overcome by the love I felt approaching her space, she appeared much smaller than I remembered. Her eyes were so soulful and filled with the highest gratitude. I could see myself in the reflection of her golden eyes. She pierced my being, I love her just as I loved Bear-fully with no conditions. Her behavior toward other animals is a response to the despicable teachings of humans but it is not her natural state of being. She exists on the field of purity, of love, of loyalty. On that day nearly a year ago I couldn’t see that her and I weren’t yet through, we have a lot of work to do, I promised her we’ll do it together. While I was there I couldn’t help but notice a shadow of light dancing around us feeling Bears presence as if she were responsible for our crossing paths.
When life interacts with you, how do you respond?