This goes out to my pets...yup, you are reading it right...to my pets. Oh, I know....everyone thinks that I have done them a huge favor by adopting them (why so many pets?)
But what so few people see is how they have helped me...how they have taught me patience, patience, patience....and tolerance for differences as well as a better acceptance of differences.
These little furry, feathered, shelled "people" have also guided me through the emotional ride of "knowing when to let go".... putting my own desires aside when it comes to letting one of them go.
I found the strength to continue in a profession I feel needs me since I was adopted by my little motley crew...by then the desire to serve those who were behind the "8-ball" was so very, very strong. The need to give-back to an abused being (as a way of saying a universal "thank you") for all I had been blessed with took root when I let the first pet (Toby from our local animal shelter) into my life...and into my heart. From there, it was just a short hop to working in a Title 1 School found in the "hood"....and the rest is (shall we say) history.
I hope my little group knows how much they are loved and needed....I hope they forgive any hurt I may have given them....I never meant to...
And I hope they know how much I love them ...and how grateful I am to them....for I believe that they are the instruments God used to make some good changes in me....after all, as my brother Nick once said..."God works in mysterious ways...why not through hamburger?" Well, OK Nick....He does work in mysterious ways for our benefit....why not through pets?
One of my most favorite gifts this holiday season was an icon of St. Mamas....in the Eastern Orthodox faith he is the patron saint of animals)....my daughter-in-law (boy, does it feel strange to say that!) gave it to us. Words cannot express how much I love this gift. It is to him (and God) that I ask for a blessing for all creatures and especially for my "babies"....the world is a better place because they are in my life...for I am a better person because of them....