We seek the comfort of another.
Someone to share the life we choose.
Someone to help us through the never ending attempt to understand ourselves.
And in the end, someone to comfort us along the way.
~ Marlin Finch Lupus
Today I am celebrating the birthday of one of my greatest teachers. I have had many teachers in life. Many of them were people, and many were animals. But the teacher that I am celebrating today is a dog.
I have only known her for three years, but I feel like I have known her for lifetimes. She is my constant companion, my friend, my guardian, and my teacher. She is my dog. I am her human. And we love each other more deeply that I ever though possible.
Hocus (and the rest of our animal menagerie) have taught me some of my most valuable lessons in life. Because of them, I learned to see life through the eyes of an animal. I learned how to live life to the fullest, and to never take things for granted. They showed me how to trust more, give more, love more, feel more, and share more. They showed me what unconditional love and loyalty really is. They taught me how to slow down, and how to love myself more. They showed me how to play more, why it’s good to be goofy, and to not care what anyone else thinks. They show me why it’s safe to be my authentic self, and not be afraid to hide who I really am, and what I really feel. They showed me how to move through fear gracefully, and how to never regret a damn thing. From watching them, I learned that I am never a victim of the world; I have the ability to create my world. They taught me to not take life too seriously, but to give 100 percent to everything I do.
My teachers taught me when you breathe into fear, it becomes adventure. Adventure appeals to your sense of wonder, your inner child, and most important, your creative self. It also reminds you that you make new things happen- the world doesn’t just happen to you. ~ Sonia Choquette
How do you give thanks to someone who gives you these kinds of gifts every day? It’s easy; by thanking them each day – not just on their birthday.
So here we are. It’s a day after her birthday, but I don’t care. It’s not about the date. It’s about honoring and celebrating her every day. So I made a promise to do just that.
For the rest of my life, I will celebrate her. I will celebrate the day she was born. I will celebrate the day she came into our lives. I will celebrate every day. I will celebrate all of them.
I made a cheesy video for my husband, who once again, has to be gone for long lengths of time, so he cannot be with her during her “birthday extravaganza”. I wasn’t going to share it with anyone but our family, but I finally decided to share it with other families who love their animal companions as much as we do. My hope is to inspire you to celebrate your furry, feathered, or scaly animal companion every day of the year.
If you choose to, you can watch the video here.
Let’s stop waiting for birthdays to do “special things” with our animal family members. Go on an adventure together on a Wednesday! Offer him that rare, special treat on a Tuesday! Spend quality time with her on a Thursday! Make time for them every day.
The earth trembled and a great rift appeared, separating the first man and woman from the rest of the animal kingdom. As the chasm grew deeper and wider, all the other creatures, afraid for their lives, returned to the forest — except for the dog, who after much consideration lept the perilous rift to stay with the humans on the other side. His love for humanity was greater than his bond to other creatures, he explained, and he willingly forfeited his place in paradise to prove it.”
~ Native American folktale, Ojibway tribe
How do you celebrate your animal family member’s birthdays? I would love to hear!