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wisdom of dogs, Issue #073-- Year of Equanimity
September 21, 2022

Sandy's Past Comes Back

We were walking in the park when a white SUV pulled into the parking lot. A white-haired man got out. Sandy began to quiver with excitement. I could feel the happy rolling off of her.

“No,” I said. “That's not Joe.”

Joe was her former owner. He drove a white SUV. He passed away almost three years ago, shortly after she came to live with me. But she doesn't know that.

She was excited that maybe, at last, the man she loved had come to get her. Then the man opened the back door of his car and got out a black lab puppy.

She went completely still and I could almost see her heart break. I reassured her. I patted her side. We walked over and talked to him so that she could see it was not Joe.

She seemed satisfied, but subdued.

Waiting for Joe

It wasn't until that moment I realized she was still waiting for him. She was still expecting that one day, her human would come back and get her.

Despite fitting in to our family and joining into our activities, she was waiting for Joe. And he's not coming back.

I have no way to tell her that. I have no way to explain the why behind this abandonment. This is a hurt I can't make go away.

Sandy has her own version of how she got a new_family.html but she can't know the whole truth of it.

What we don't know

When bad things happen, we feel the pain.

What we don’t know is that maybe someone made a sacrifice to lessen the blow. That’s what Joe did for Sandy.

I’m sure it would have comforted him to have Sandy with him in his last hours. Instead, he gave her up before his end to make sure she never spent time in a shelter.

He wanted her to go from one happy, safe home to another. I sent him photos of her settling in to reassure him.

But there is no reassurance for her. She only knows that she was dropped off by the people she loved and they never came back for her.

If she could understand the truth, she would know how much he loved her.

Perhaps this is what equanimity really asks of us.

To know that our understanding is limited.

And to never assume that love has abandoned us. In fact, love may yet be protecting us.

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