Crowz Nest

Because it's time... as it was once before.

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Location: Port Murray, NJ

I'm a bit old to be starting out in life again, but that's where I am. Sadly. Or gladly. It's where I am. Come along. Watch the fun. Inch by inch, row by row, gonna make this garden grow.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Two of my teachers

Two of my dearest teachers are getting older. Both of them are models of grace and dignity as they navigate the later years of their lives. Both of them just continue to live, to do, to learn, and, for me, they continue to teach. Neither of them live with me. I've been fortunate to have them move into my life through the random bisection of my life with others' lives.

This is Grandma Otter. You've met her here before, and you know I think she is a grand old lady. She was, as a youngster, a uniquely funny, charming, and appealing girl. She retains those traits in her older years. Through Otter, I have Crow and Hudson in my life, two of her children, and they are the richest and most rewarding piece of my life. But Otter has given me so much more than this. The greatest lesson Otter has taught me is that if you stand with open heart and open hands, and wait, sometimes someone wonderful sees you and cares enough to place their heart and their hand in yours, freely and unexpectedly. It has been an important and humbling lesson. I hold Otter's friendship and love as one of the greatest gifts in my life.

This is Sid. Sid recently had extensive surgery. I had worked with her owner, Jane, just prior to the procedure, holding open a window through which Jane could see past her worry and her concern what it was that Sid wanted and needed. I anxiously awaited word to see if Sid had fared well in the surgery, and was relieved to learn she had. Later that week, I attended a seminar and learned that Sid was likely to be there with Jane. When I met Jane, though, Sid had been left home because Jane was concerned that she, one of the primary players in the seminar, would be unable to properly tend to Sid's needs, and that the day would be too tiring for Sid. I said I'd be happy to tend to Sid, and the next day, I looked for Jane as soon as I arrived, eager to meet Sid in person. When Jane placed Sid into my hands, tiny, tired, impossibly frail following the surgery, I realized how much faith and trust Jane was placing in me. She was placing her precious friend into my care.

Sid and I spent the next two days together. The first day, we were getting to know each other, but slowly, as the hours passed, I could feel Sid relaxing. Finally, she voluntarily crawled under my shirt, and placing her incised belly up against mine, I felt her give over her trust completely as she fell soundly asleep. I held her gently, and concentrated on giving her as much energy as she would take from me. The most amazing thing was the moment when I could feel her begin taking it. By the end of the weekend, I had lost my heart completely to Sid, who taught me, in less than 2 days, how much you receive when freely giving. I'm told that Sid benefitted greatly from our time together. I'm glad for that. I just wish there were some way to express the scope of what Sid did for me.

These are two of the many animals who have graced my life with their wisdom. These are two of the teachers for whom I am so grateful. These are two animals who have spent their lives with other people, who love and are devoted to others, but who have freely and openly let me into their hearts. I am thankful.


Blogger sibtigre2 said...

Aw, Beautiful Otter. It's hard to believe she is as old as she is. But I have trouble believing Crow and Hudson are as old as they are as well. And Sid is adorable. Makes me want a rat for a pet again...Alas, I just don't think I'm at a point in my life to give one the proper attention they would need...

It's amazing who is sent to give the lessons, isn't it?

4:20 PM  

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