Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Everything I am thankful for ... I learned from my Schnoodle

As Thanksgiving approaches this week, I have been thinking a lot about gratitude.  What it means to me.  Where it shows up in my life.  How I express it.  I realize that I am grateful for so many people and so many things, and that my life is blessed in more ways than I can count.  Though it is often easy to focus on the things I am trying to fix or the relationships I would like to improve, I think Thanksgiving is a perfect time to sit back and simply reflect on what feels good and brings me joy and peace.

By now you are well acquainted with Beckett, my Wonder Schnoodle, so no shock that he rises to the very top of my gratitude list this year (as he will, I imagine, every year from this point on).  But I realized, as I watched him eat his way through his latest chew toy last night, that everything I have learned from him has made my gratitude list this year.  Some of the lessons he has taught me are simple, and some are so complex that I have a hard time wrapping my head around them or putting them into words.  But either way, his presence in my life is a daily reminder of just how wonderful the unexpected can be, and of how blessings can occasionally appear in the most unlikely places - even in a rescue shelter.

So, here is this year's gratitude list with a unique twist.  I like to call it "Everything I am thankful for I learned from my Schnoodle":

1.  Life should be all about fun!  What's wrong with that?  Why should I have to schedule it or time it or ration it?  Why can't I just have it?  After all, FUN is everywhere!  In a stray sock, a new bone, a fluttering leaf, a loud squeaky toy.  All I have to do is walk a few feet and fun will be waiting in some form or other.  How easy and awesome is that?

2. I eat when I'm hungry.  I stop when I'm satisfied.  I see nothing wrong with eating a treat when I have done something well (or two treats when I have done something really well!).  I don't criticize my mom for rewarding me with food - I just do more of what she wants so I can have ... more rewards. (Don't have to be a math major to figure this one out, people.)  Food keeps me alive so I can have ... yup, you guessed it ... more fun.  (See #1 above for more details on this).

3. Breathing is important.  And not that hurried, shallow nonsense that most humans do because they're always so busy talking and yelling and worrying and rushing.  When I breathe, I breathe from my belly, deep, full breaths that fill my lungs and then slowly leave.  It's why I can run and chew and bark and jump for hours upon hours while my poor mom alternates between hyperventilating and barely breathing as she hurries through life looking at that time-telling thing on her wrist.  She looks at that a lot.

4. When I don't feel well, I nap.  When I am tired, I nap.  When I feel like napping, I nap.  Sleep restores me.  I need it.  So I take as much as I can, whenever and wherever I can.  It repairs my muscles and replenishes my energy and makes me a much happier, much more pleasant Schnoodle to be around.  If I loaded my plush bed up with lap tops and remote controls and books like my mom stacks on her bed, I'm pretty sure I'd suffer from chronic insomnia.  And while I'm at it, if the television is on, my brain is on, too.  Sleep.  It's what the body is supposed to do.

5. I love people!  Sometimes I bark at them, sometimes I lunge at them, sometimes I size them up, sometimes I circle them.  Depends on the person.  Depends on how the person treats me.  But I always give people the benefit of the doubt, since I am usually pretty sure they show up because they are interested in getting to know me better.  And most people are kind.  The mean ones eventually go away, and if they don't, well, then I can growl and hide.  But why growl and hide before I know why they're there?  Maybe they just want to play fetch and give me a cookie.  Why would I bark away THAT opportunity?!

6. I don't speak English, so people need to show me they love me.

7. I appreciate people who are willing to sit on the floor so I can look into their eyes and who don't make me struggle and jump to reach their level.

8. Home is where I live and family is who I love and who loves me.  Even though my mom doesn't look like me, she chose me.

9. It's not good going through life following people.  It's good to be a leader, ahead of the crowd. Bold. Confident.  Even loud, when the situation calls for it.  My mom is a bit of a follower at times.  She once told me that "Neutering is just what good puppy parents do, Beckett."  What good parents?  I want to meet these so called "good parents"!  Followers, the whole lot of them.  And look how that ended up for me!

10. Money can't buy everything.  Sure, it bought me lots of medical care and toys and food and daycare, but  sometimes cuddling with my person is the most priceless part of my day.  (Sometimes.  Because I did just get a cool new bone, and it's perfectly ok to love that, too!)

Happy Thanksgiving to all!

Til next time,
~ Hasky and Beckett

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for this sweet post. I shared it with the Schnoodle community (via a weekly newsletter) on PackDog.com :)


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.