An open letter to my dog
Remember the other day when we went for a walk, and we found that field of wild poppies and Queen Anne’s lace, and you just lost your shit because it was so amazing? And I just stood there kinda grumpy (because menzies), while you literally frolicked through a field of wild flowers without a care in the world?
You don’t remember? Of course you don’t. You’re not one to dwell on the past. You’re so busy shredding the Vote Leave flyer I gave you to chew on and completely loving it that those flowers don’t even exist to you anymore.
What I’m trying to say, little man, is that you are GOALS. You’re like my life coach. You’re always reminding me to live in the now; to get excited by how amazing everything is; to NAP FREELY. It gets me thinking about how much better we’d all be if we were just like you. And then you start licking your balls and I think maybe not just like you.
You know what else I admire about you? The way you love. Human’s talk about unconditional love and selfless love and sure, we’re capable of those things, I think, but they’re not easy. They take work, and sacrifice, and sometimes that can lead to resentment. Our kind of love is so seldom perfect, but you met mum’s priest that one time and ever since it’s like Christmas morning for you whenever he walks through the door.
I don’t know if you know this about me, Teddy, but I’m really hard on myself sometimes. When I don’t do my best, and when I don’t accomplish my goals, and when I’m not the person I want to be, I feel worthless. And sometimes I try and talk about it with another human. And I’ll be honest with you, little man, most of them are smarter than you. They can have a lot of wisdom when I’m awash with sadness, and they can see me clearly when maybe I can’t.
But I look at you, and you have as much adoration in your eyes as you do when I’m feeling on top of the world. You don’t care about my successes and my failures. You don’t care if I’ve gained weight or haven’t washed my hair. You, too, see me clearly, and you never, ever judge. You don’t even know how to. Just imagine a world in which all we humans were as free from judgement as dogs. Is that the paradise you dream of when you bark in your sleep?
And there’s more. You never lie. You never hide who you are. You never hold your stomach in for a photo or pretend to agree with someone just to fit in. You are your complete, honest self, all the time, and you have never once worried about what the other dogs think of you. You know you don’t have to, because the other dogs are just like you. Just as wise to the simple rules for happiness and the best way to live: authentically, for today, with an open heart and endless wonder.
I think maybe, Teddy, you’re a human’s best friend because you’re so damn good for us. You remind us of our flaws and show us a better way. You’re generous with your joy. You bring us into the moment. You love us no matter what.
So thanks, for knowing how to relax; for being just so crazy excited to see me; for loving the outdoors and nature; for being fascinated by everything; for reminding me to live more like you.