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Monday, November 28, 2011

Days 5 and 6: I'm thankful for...

Welcome to days 5 and 6 of my ongoing attempt to focus on one thing I'm thankful for in my life every day for 1 year. Why? Because I'm a grumpy-ass curmudgeon who finds great pleasure in grousing. I fixate on what's wrong when I have so very many things that are right in my life. So, I thought I'd try looking on the sunny side for a change! Can I do it for 365 days--from Thanksgiving Eve 2011 to Thanksgiving Eve 2012? Since this is a 2-fer post, I guess I'm not doing so well at the daily posting, but I'll get back on track and keep trying. Let's see if I can do it!

For Day 5, Sunday. 11/27/11, I'm thankful for my wonderful dog Muggle. He's a 3 1/2 year old Tibetan Terrier we rescued from a kill-shelter in the upstate 2 years ago. We got him based on a photo, with no idea how big he was ("Medium" - what's medium? I thought Spike was pretty medium at 60 lbs.) We called the rescue organization on Monday. They picked him up on Tuesday. He was groomed (shaved because he was so matted) Wednesday, neutered Thursday, and we picked him up on Saturday. He walked into the house and peed on our antique  bench.

Turns out, Muggle wasn't housebroken. Or trained. At all. He was also what I'd consider a little dog -- only 21 lbs. Matt's first reaction was, "I thought you wanted a bigger dog?"

Then Muggle went on to steal our hearts--mine, Matt's, Minerva's, Spooky's, the neighbors' and their dog's, everyone's. He was a fast learner. Before long he'd graduated from beginner obedience at PetSmart, Advanced Obedience at Lowcountry Dog Agility, Intro to Agility, Obstacles II, and within 15 months of our adopting him, he participated in his first agility trial--AND Q'ed!

Muggle makes us laugh, brings us joy, and fills our home with activity and even more love. We can't imagine not having Muggle. He was meant to be ours, and us his. I am so very thankful for our boy, Muggle.

In this image - upper left: photo we saw when we found Muggle, upper right: day1 at his new house with his haircut, lower right: at an agility run-thru.

Day 6, Monday 11/28/11. Today, I'm thankful for my mother. As with all mother-daughter relationships, sometimes it's trying, but that just goes with the territory. Regardless of how much we might bicker, we love each other. She's always there for me, even as I try to not let her be. She has always been the first person I turn to when I have a problem, but as she gets older, has to deal with her own health problems, worries about Michael, is occassionally overwhelmed by her two aging cats and new dog, I try to be less of a burden. I don't want to add to her mountain of worries. But it's comforting to know she's there. If and when I really do need my mommy, she's only a phone call away.

Moms are our security blankets. They give us the tools and ability to leave the nest and soar, to fly far away and return when we want to or need to. A successful mother is one who does her job so well that she can confidently let go, knowing letting go isn't turning away, distance isn't separation, and love doesn't need a leash. No matter how far and wide I roam, no matter what binds I get myself into, I know I can get myself out of it because my mother raised a responsible, self-sufficient, competent and capable daughter. She not only lets me go, but cheers me on and gets out of my way so I can succeed or fail on my own. And when I do succeed, she's there to share the joy, and when I do fail, she's there to give me a hug, kiss the boo-boos and make them all better, and get me moving forward again.

For having a real mom, not a helicopter parent, not one who's living vicariously through me, and mostly, for having a mom with her own life, who knows my brother and I are parts of her life, not her life and vice versa, I'm thankful for my mother.

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