Wise words in a world of stress and misery. Let’s be happy
Rev. Shane L. Bishop
I have been thinking a lot about happiness of late, partially because so many people seem unhappy. I think that was my first epiphany upon entering the world of Social Media; people are unhappy and there are a lot of them. Now don’t get me wrong, we all know some people who wouldn’t be happy, were they not unhappy but I am not talking about them. We will just let them be. I am also not thinking theologically here (i.e. juxtaposing happiness and joy), today I am going to err on the practical and pragmatic side of things. With that being said, let’s get going.
I think most people want to be happy; they are just not quite sure how to get there from their present location. Many people honestly believe that happiness is a lucky bounce; a sunny disposition or favorable circumstances but I disagree. Happiness is a choice…
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I’m a writer. You’d think my blog would be about…well…writing. It is, sometimes, but life has a way of interfering when we least expect it. This blog tends to be about gardens and cooking and…dogs. Not that I’m not writing, or editing, or reading (research ya know) but sometimes these take a back seat. And sometimes life has a way of reminding me about what really matters
Earlier this week I helped a friend whose back was hurting get her older dog to the veterinarian for that last, sad trip. Because this is what we who love our dogs do, no matter the breed or origin of the dog. As we chatted about our years in dogs I realized once again what hold our dogs have on our hearts and souls.
These forty plus (eeep almost forty-five) years Salukis have shared my life have helped me develop promises to my dogs:
- Whether you are born into my hands, placed in my arms by your breeder, or picked up in a gutter, this is your forever home. The only way this will change is if one day you look up to find your special person.
- If you do not excel at the purpose I’d hoped you could accomplish, we will find something else for you to do to keep your mind and body in good health. If that means sleeping on cushions and chasing butterflies, so be it. You will never be discarded because you did not measure up.
- My ego will never supersede your health and safety, or your happiness. On occasion I might push you, push us all, to be more and better…only as long as we can both be happy.
- My job is to protect you from any danger, be it a rough trainer, bad dog food, or a human who does not think you have value (this had a strong influence on dating!) Your job is to be happy and healthy.
The Amazing Two Headed Saluki
Competition: Points, Ribbons, Titles…these are all ephemeral, and occupy such a small part of our lives. Time spent together matters far more. Although, yeah, it’s fun to win, it’s more fun to kick back and enjoy each other and our friends.
- At the end, when your body has betrayed you, I will let you go with tears and love. It will be my last and most precious gift to you.
My friends who have devoted their lives to dogs will understand this. Those who do not see the purpose in this sort of agreement with an animal…I’m so sorry for you.