Saturday, January 1, 2011

And so another year begins

My years are not marked so much by the dates on the calendar, but by the critters that come and go. I think in terms of “that was the year I lost my Caleb” or “that was the year Oliver came into my life”.

And each January 1st, I find myself reflecting “What has changed in this past year? How is my life different now?”

And so it is today, this New Year’s Day 2011.

I began the year sharing my home with four dogs and a cat – Charley, Sadie, Belle, Oliver and Allie. The passing months saw the loss of my two precious shelties, Belle and Oliver. Oliver passed away six months ago today, and Belle one week after that. I miss them still, and always will.

In September, pregnant foster dog Lucy came to live with me, and October saw the arrival of her ten pups – Deli, Peanut, Hubbard, Pumpkin, Zuke, Patty, Bo, Nugget, Acorn, and Summer. Fourteen animals in my home. It was a busy time, a very busy time. By the end of November, the pups were all gone, and yesterday funny, silly, smart, loving Lucy left for her new home.

And so I end the year with just two old easy care dogs and a mischievous cat. It is awfully quiet around here. I can’t help but wonder what this next year will bring. What critters will arrive, pass through, pass on, or stay?

I am hard pressed to think of anything inspirational to write this New Years day – the bittersweet feeling of placing Lucy yesterday is at the forefront of my mind. And I think of all my human friends who have lost canine companions in this past year or welcomed new ones to their homes. Each leaving, each arrival, affects our heart forever. Last night my friend Ellen sent this quote to me, and it is so right, so perfect, for those of us who love animals:

It came to me that every time I lose a dog, they take a piece of my heart
with them. And every new dog who comes into my life gifts me with a piece of
their heart. If I live long enough, all the components of my heart will be
dog, and I will become as generous and loving as they are.
- Cheryl Zuccaro -

Happy New Year, everyone. May we all become as generous and loving as the critters we care for.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Happy new year Jean, Charley, Sadie and Allie. And an especially happy wish for Lucy in her new home. As anyone who has fostered a dog knows, the gift is in goodbye and you have given lucky Miss Lucy a very special new year's gift, although it probably doesn't feel so for either one of you right now.

Here's to a wonderful year ahead!

Deb S. & crew