It is tense, concerned and contracted.
It’s early, the air asleep.
We got broken into. The garage.
Jackie thinks, bonus! everyone’s up.
Dude, I don’t want to take you out for pee.
I don’t want to pick up your poo.
I don’t want to feed you.
I want to breathe.
Give me a second.
What the fuck happened?
Holes in the skin, I feel violated.
Like a car crash.
Thank God it wasn’t the car.
Valuables, inventory, a guessing game of what was.
Jackie’s diarrhea is at the ready.
He paces in circles, tail anxious.
Come on people, he wants to say.
It’s on us, all of it.
Hard not to point fingers.
But who fuckin’ cares?
Damage is done.
The lesson came too late.
Diarrhea out. Next step: food.
Jackie circles us expecting the normal routine.
We stand like fixtures
Scratching our heads.
A fog in the brain.
Our lives have been usurped. It’s like a hostage feeling. We are exhausted. Seven weeks of dealing with a baby that doesn’t speak our language.
Seven weeks of making him the priority.
Seven weeks of our priorities being revoked.
Seven weeks of isolation.
Seven weeks of hard training. For both dog and human.
Love has gotten sick.
I had a panic attack yesterday.
We are not happy right now.
Why is this so hard?
We moved to the beach to have a better life — bike rides, dinners out, hangouts, more yoga, friends around.
Now we feel old and unhappy; by 8p we want to crawl up and sleep.
Art has taken a backseat.
It kills me.
It’s breaking my heart.
Something has got to change.
Something has got to give.
I need perspective.
I need some clarity.
I need a massage.
Jackie the dog…was brought to the ashram when he was very young. He never mixed with other dogs, nor did he play much. Instead, he lived the life of a sadhu. He would sit in front of Bhagavan [Sri Ramana Maharshi] on an orange cloth that had been provided by a devotee and stare intently at Bhagavan’s eye. Because Bhagavan had a lot of love for him, and because he always behaved in such an exemplary fashion, he was always very well looked after… Whenever prasad [food that has been offered to God in a ceremony, then distributed to devotees] was distributed, Jackie would not eat until Bhagavan began to eat his own portion. On such occasions, he would watch Bhagavan’s face intently. As soon as Bhagavan put a morsel into his mouth, Jackie would start to eat his own portion.
I remember one incident concerning Jackie that occurred while Bhagavan was sitting by the well, surrounded by devotees. Jackie was sitting with the devotees, looking intently at Bhagavan, when a stray dog entered the ashram through the back gate. Jackie, distracted by the newcomer, began to bark.
Bhagavan gently chided him by saying, ‘You just close your eyes. You just close your eyes. You just close your eyes. If you do this you will not be able to see the dog.’
Jackie obeyed at once but some of the rest of us continued to look at the stray dog.
When I saw what was happening I laughed and remarked, ‘This is a good teaching. It is not only for Jackie, it is for everyone.’
– David Godman from Living by the Words of Bhagavan
You made me what I am today, courage at its best.
You wanted me to know no fear, a cut above the rest.
Not only did I master that, I’ve thrown in loyalty, too.
Look past my eyes into my soul, you know I’d die for you.
I’ll watch your kids, I’ll watch your house.
Your praise will be my crown,
ask what you will-I’ll do my best.
I’ll even be your clown.
But some of you don’t like me, I’m sure I don’t know why.
The only thing I’m guilty of is courage, love, and try.
But still they want to see me go, they want my breed to end.
Will I see you sitting idly by? You, whom I call a friend?
You made me what I am today, you never saw me waiver.
I’ve done my best to keep you safe. Won’t you please return the favor.
– Author Unknown
(but you can learn more about pit bulls here)
I walked slow today.
I watched my feet take each step.
I felt the sun on my skin and the light breeze play with my fly-aways.
I felt my hand on his leash, and my heart blowing kisses to my adorable dog.
I walked slow today.
I found myself utterly aware of the sounds in my place.
I caught the sun making shapes for my amusement.
I smelt the elegant build of homemade lunch cooking on the stove.
I clocked my lover’s lips curling up into a smile just for me.
I walked slow today.
I felt my fingers tickle and grip various objects.
I watched my lungs expand to catch the next breath.
I quietened my voice to make room for the subtle.
I observed my slow-moving thoughts.
Because I walked slow today.
No holiday food.
No other homes.
Lots of invitations.
This year we are at home.
This year we welcome a new member to the family so simplicity is key.
This year things are unconventional.
Am I sad? Probably not.
Am I missed? Probably not.
Am I forgotten? Probably not.
Continue reading “christmas like no other”