On June 1st, my dog died. Then we got a new dog. Then on July 1st she ran away.
Things haven’t been super great here lately.
Before I go on, our new dog is safely home again. But I would be lying if I said I wasn’t still a bit of a wreck about the whole thing. I noticed that I still am looking for her, even though I know she’s safely at home. I suppose a bit of it is just habit, looking for what I had lost. But I think a bit of it is worrying that she will get lost all over again.
The night before Meli got spooked and escaped from her martingale collar while I was walking her, I lifted her beautiful face in my hands and I told her, “I won’t give up on you.”
Sure, I meant that I wouldn’t give up on helping her become a happy and confident dog in our home. But in the hours I spent walking the neighborhood holding her empty leash and collar, and the hours I spent climbing through brambles and overgrown forested areas near us, I couldn’t let go of my words to her.
I won’t give up on you.
It’s easy to give on people, isn’t it? To tell your heart to stop caring and daring. To just give up on the hope for another outcome. Because hope is just so freaking powerful of a thing, isn’t it?
So for hours everyday between when I lost Meli and when we finally found her, I’d go out walking, calling her name, and hoping I’d see her face and not her corpse.
As it happened, there was a large fire on July 4th that probably forced her out of hiding. And fireworks are legal where I live so it was fairly horrible around us what with folks blowing up all sorts of explosive things. Long story short, Meli allowed herself to get found by running out of the woods, through a neighborhood, and onto someone’s porch.
She got herself lost and then got herself found. Most likely because she was so hungry, hurt, and scared that getting found seemed like a better option than being out in the scary any longer.
We are all a bit more like Meli than we’d like to admit. We get lost and if we are lucky, we also get found.
I am so thankful for the folks in my life who have been part of my journey. And I am so thankful for the ones who may not have told me they wouldn’t give up on me, but that’s what they did.
Like Robert Fulghum encouraged us, get found folks. And may the folks never give up on us.