Monday, November 14, 2011
Saturday, November 12, 2011
Friday, November 11, 2011
If you've ever given up on a family pet, I think you should know what happened after you walked away. Or if you've ever considered it... then you should know the truth before you do. It's not about "how hard" it is for you. This is about them. I challenge you to care enough about them to hear their side of the story. It's your choice, of course... but it's a life-or-death decision.
I've rescued a lot of dogs. The neglected, the abused, the sick, the maimed, the elderly. In short, the walking dead. But some of the saddest cases I've ever witnessed... are the Owner Surrenders.
When a dog is taken from a horrific situation and brought into a loving environment like the K-9 Corral, it's honestly like Heaven for them. Suddenly, they have warmth and food and joy. Playtime and walks and fun. For the first time... they know love, and they love it.
These dogs are waiting... for their families to return. They're waiting... to go home. They're waiting... to go back to the forever they were promised.
With every day, every hour, and every minute, they're waiting for their moms and dads to come back for them. With every car, every visitor, and every walk outdoors, they're certain they're going home. With every breath, every blink, and every sigh... they're wondering where their families are. What's taking them so long?
In their eyes, there's the undying wish forhome. In their smiles, there's the unwavering hope that their wish will soon come true. And in their tiny bedtime whimpers, there's the slow realization... that they may never go home again.
In the early stages, most surrendered dogs never doubt for a second that their families will come back for them. So... they sit, they watch, and they wait. But over time... that wish becomes nothing more than a dream... and that dream becomes their worst nightmare.
It's beyond heartbreaking to watch them wait, day after day, for a family that won't be back for them. Especially when I can't help them understand... and even if I could... I couldn't bear to tell them. Obviously, some dogs don't know that they've been abandoned. But with Owner Surrenders... there's another heartbreaking group. The dogs that knowthey're being dumped. They just know. These dogs are often dragged into the animal shelter by their families... as they desperately try to resist the inevitable. Their eyes plead with their moms and dads, begging for a second chance. They'll use every ounce of energy to try and leave with a family that doesn't even want them anymore. And as that family walks away... these dogs will cry out for them: "Wait! You forgot to take me with you!!! Please don't leave me here! Please!!!"
Even though these dogs realize what's happened-- their devotion never wavers. They'll still wait, every single day, for the very family that dumped them. When anyone walks through the animal shelter, these dogs will eagerly press their faces against the cage... tails wagging... to see if their family has come back for them.
Then, the hope in their eyes is replaced with despair, as they realize that it isn't their family after all. They'll slowly walk back to the corner... the corner they now call "home" ... head hung... heart broken. And they'll repeat that same process... every single day.
In no-kill animal shelters, these dogs have all the time in the world... to wait for a family that will never return for them. But in kill shelters, Owner Surrenders are often killed immediately. Why so? Well, stray pets must be held for a certain number of days, in order to give their families time to reclaim them. But with Owner Surrenders, there's no mandatory hold time, which means they can be killed immediately. And trust me, if space is limited, Owner Surrenders will be the first to go. Check out Fort Worth Animal Care and Control or Dallas City Shelter.
Other pets may be given days or weeks... which will be spent waiting for their families. And when their time is up, they'll cry out for those families... as they are killed.
Sure, you can sit back and blame the kill animal shelters all day long, but they didn't dump your pet. You did.Basically, you handed them a very heartbroken dog, and said, "Here, you deal with this." Then, you turned and walked away, convinced that your dog would find a good home. All the while, millions upon millions of pets are being killed in shelters every year. You're certain that your pet will be the exception? Are you willing to bet his life on it??But that's part of the problem here... people are allowed to ignore the truth. Every day, pet owners are carelessly making major life-or-death decisions... choices that have the potential to ruin their pet's life... or result in their death. And sadly, there were so many other options...
Maybe you "feel bad" about dumping your pet. Maybe you even said, "I'm sorry" before you left them. But your dog doesn't need to hear "I'm sorry"... they just need "I love you." Because even after you dump them... they still love you. Every minute, they'll think of you. Every day, they'll wonder if you ever think of them, too. Every night, they'll dream of you... they'll wish for you. And believe me... they'll wait for you... until their very last breath.
They'd never believe, for even a second... that you actually left them to die. But even if they knew...they'd still love you anyway. That is what breaks my heart :(
Friday, November 4, 2011
Sunday, October 2, 2011
Imagine how you'd feel... if you were simply waiting to die... before you ever even lived...
This is the story of each of the dogs I save. This is their reality... their truth. Abuse. Neglect. Cruelty. Torture. Hatred.
Welcome to the only world they've ever known.
Thursday, September 22, 2011
it means I can't do it for someone else.
To let go is not to cut myself off,
it's the realization I can't control another.
To let go is not to enable,
but allow learning from natural consequences.
To let go is to admit powerlessness, which means
the outcome is not in my hands.
To let go is not to try to change or blame another,
it's to make the most of myself.
To let go is not to care for,
but to care about.
To let go is not to fix,
but to be supportive.
To let go is not to judge,
but to allow another to be a human being.
To let go is not to be in the middle arranging all the outcomes,
but to allow others to affect their destinies.
To let go is not to be protective,
it's to permit another to face reality.
To let go is not to deny,
but to accept.
To let go is not to nag, scold or argue,
but instead to search out my own shortcomings and correct them.
To let go is not to adjust everything to my desires,
but to take each day as it comes and cherish myself in it.
To let go is not to criticize or regulate anybody,
but to try to become what I dream I can be.
To let go is not to regret the past,
but to grow and live for the future.
To let go is to fear less and love more.
Sunday, September 11, 2011
But being "good" shouldn't simply mean that a person doesn't do bad things. That shouldn't be enough. There should always be an active, ongoing effort to do good things... to make a difference.
I guess that's where I get frustrated sometimes. I know so many amazing people, who are capable of so much good. Yet, there's so little motivation to actually do more with their time. To do more with their lives.
The reality is this: we're all just trying to make it in this crazy world. I get that, trust me. But if everyone just gave a little of themselves, then people like me wouldn't have to carry all of the weight on our shoulders.
Why should the few people who care SO much be expected to do it all? Sure, I care more about animals than the average person. And yes, I've made the decision to dedicate my life to saving them. I certainly don't expect everyone else to do the same; it's just not realistic. So of course I carry more of the burden than others. That's my choice.
But I can't do it all on my own; I need help, just like every other person who dedicates their life to a cause also needs help. I do so much... and I do it, because I want to do it. But with more help, I could do even more. We could do more.
Everyone can do something. Every single person. But it's so disheartening when good people choose to do nothing. Each helping hand makes a huge difference... and when the help isn't there, the entire burden falls on those like me, who are already overloaded and overwhelmed. Because we are the ones who care too much to do nothing at all.
Instead of reaching out to lighten that load, a lot of people feel comforted, just knowing that people like me exist. So, when help is needed, they figure we'll take care of it, and those thoughts help them sleep at night.
It's good to be thankful for those who are out there fighting on the front-lines. But without support, here's what happens: the people who do it all... eventually reach a breaking point. It's inevitable... one person can only do so much. When that happens, everyone loses. The world loses.
This isn't my way of saying I've reached a breaking point. This is just my way of asking for help... for me, and others like me. This is my way of encouraging all of the good people out there to act. To get involved, to make a difference, and to do something amazing with your life. Allow the goodness in your heart to drive your actions.
Just do something-- anything. Make your life count. If you're a good person, prove it :)
When you die, what will others say about you? What good did you do with the time you were given? How was your life different from all the other lives?
My hope is to inspire every truly good person to have solid answers to those questions. Otherwise... why are you here?
Wednesday, August 17, 2011
A poem to explain more:
Reason, Season, or Lifetime
People come into your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime.
When you figure out which one it is,
you will know what to do for each person.
When someone is in your life for a REASON,
it is usually to meet a need you have expressed.
They have come to assist you through a difficulty;
to provide you with guidance and support;
to aid you physically, emotionally or spiritually.
They may seem like a godsend, and they are.
They are there for the reason you need them to be.
Then, without any wrongdoing on your part or at an inconvenient time,
this person will say or do something to bring the relationship to an end.
Sometimes they die. Sometimes they walk away.
Sometimes they act up and force you to take a stand.
What we must realize is that our need has been met, our desire fulfilled; their work is done.
The prayer you sent up has been answered and now it is time to move on.
Some people come into your life for a SEASON,
because your turn has come to share, grow or learn.
They bring you an experience of peace or make you laugh.
They may teach you something you have never done.
They usually give you an unbelievable amount of joy.
Believe it. It is real. But only for a season.
LIFETIME relationships teach you lifetime lessons;
things you must build upon in order to have a solid emotional foundation.
Your job is to accept the lesson, love the person,
and put what you have learned to use in all other relationships and areas of your life.
It is said that love is blind but friendship is clairvoyant.
Thursday, July 21, 2011
grow into a man and I hope I will
guide you on the right paths.
Daddy and I can't believe
that we really have you.
It feels like a wonderful dream.
I will always love you no matter what
and will always be here when you need
me. I promise..
Thursday, April 14, 2011
"Toddlers that are spanked more frequently at age 3 are at increased risk for being more aggressive at age 5," said Taylor, assistant professor of Community Health Sciences at Tulane and lead author of the study. "We found this to be true even after taking into account other factors that might have explained this association such as the parents' level of stress, depression, use of drugs or alcohol, and the presence of other aggression within the family."
Study authors asked nearly 2,500 mothers how often they spanked their 3-year-old child in the past month, as well as questions about their child's level of aggression, demographic features and eight identified maternal parenting risk factors. Almost half (45.6 percent) of the mothers reported no spanking in the previous month, while 27.9 percent reported spanking one or two times, and 26.5 percent reported spanking more than twice. Mothers with more parenting risk factors were more likely to spank frequently. However, even accounting for these potential confounding factors, frequent spanking at age 3 increased the odds of higher levels of aggression at age 5. Signs of aggression included behaviors such as arguing or screaming; cruelty, bullying or meanness to others; destroys things; fighting and frequently threatening others.
You can read the entire study online here
Yikes, what are WE doing???? I can safely say communication and praise are working for us. Scout is a STRONG WILLED CHILD and sometimes it takes everything I have to clearly draw the lines for him as a 21 month old baby, but it is worth it. He is an amazingly kind and compassionate soul. I am NOT saying he won't become some inhumane, selfish hillbilly who forgets to respect LIFE, but at THIS point I am proud of him and will continue to preach compassion and kindness as opposed to anger and hurt....
Sunday, April 3, 2011
One of my favorite friends and I were talking about forgiveness and saying it was one of the important qualities of a person. According to dictionary.com, forgiveness means the act of forgiving and to forgive means to grant pardon for, to grant pardon to (a person) or to cease to feel resentment against.Gandhi said it well when he said that forgiveness is the attribute of the strong. For most people, to forgive is a difficult thing to do. In fact to forgive, it takes a whole lot of courage to do it. However, why do we find it so hard to forgive someone? Is is because of the need to let the person knows that we are angry with him/her? Or is it because if we forgive that person, it means that the person wins? I feel like so many people think that to forgive is all about the other person. I think that when you forgive someone, you free yourself from anger; anger is a very strong negative feeling and it blocks you from loving. Being angry sucks and allows the person or situation to take over control of you.
Thursday, March 10, 2011
Together, we colored backyardigans, trees, and even part of the table. We traded colors, we scribbled, we laughed. It felt good. It felt relaxed.
As Lil' Nugget and I bonded over Pablo, purples, greens and oranges, I watched his eyes focus and his head tilt. I watched his little hands manipulate crayons as he continuously looked at my hands for guidance. I watched his little 19 month old body sit in a chair, calmly, learning about the world around him.
I paused to realize that we were having a treasured momma-baby moment. That in this moment, what would look to any bystander to be a "normal" activity, was, actually, something to treasure. We were connecting more than we do during our morning snuggles or our late night snacks.. We were delighting in each other in the most simple yet amazing way.
Not wanting to break his focus, or the magic of the moment, I went back to my coloring. Realizing, of course, that this was a moment to be thankful for. Sure, we'd had first steps, first words and our first day of Mom's Day Out. Our family took a trip this year. My husband and I celebrated 4 years of existing together, more good than bad :)
All of those moments were moments to be thankful for as well. Of course.
But the moments that are uncelebrated and often missed: they're the ones to appreciate and hold onto FOREVER and EVER.
Wednesday, March 9, 2011
Part of the meaning of life is simply being HAPPY. I suppose it means looking at ourself as a good person? I am sure most of us have been taught that if we do something wrong, we’ll pay a price or suffer, right? Maybe we don't literally "pay" the price and just end up having to handle the consequences of our actions and words. What happens to us because of what we say or do, is up to us RIGHT ? I think it is, WE have power over what we say and do. What if you slip and you are not paying attention to what you are doing and accidentally place your palm on a hot burner; you will get burned. The burn is not a punishment; it is a natural consequence of putting your palm in the wrong place. So what about hurting others? Are we just being human?
Friday, March 4, 2011
Wednesday, March 2, 2011
Now that I am kicking major butt again (TOOT, TOOT MY OWN HORN!!!!) and on my second full month at the gym, I am reading books I have collected over the past year or two. My latest victory was Consuming Kids: Protecting Our Children from the Onslaught of Marketing & Advertsing by Susan Linn and I’m so glad I actually read it!!!!It basically highlights the insanity of corporate marketing to children and just how pervasive it is in our country. It is shocking to learn that the U.S. is one of only a handful of countries in the world that does NOT have laws against direct advertising to children. Thanks to the Federal Communications Commission who deregulated childrens TV in 1984 and basically gave advertisers the green light to barrage our children to buy, buy, and buy MORE!Linn makes a strong case in the book that marketing and advertising to children is NEVER be in their best interest. She makes her case that children are conditioned to be consumers from the time they are infants and every brand is competing for our kids to be the life-time customer they want. Linn shares over and over how marketing to children is only in the interest of the marketing agencies and corporations that directly profit from this 15 billion dollar industry. It is NEVER in the best interest of children. NEVER.Many people will say it’s the parents job to counter the affect of ads on kids and that parents must be involved in preventing the exploitation of children through ads. People complain that if we parents weren’t just so indulgent our children would have a sense of responsibility as consumers. Yet, time and time again, Linn argues that we parents are up against media and marketing 24/7 and an industry that spends more advertising to children than it does adults. In the chapter discussing the “Nag Factor” and other devious plans advertisers use to get children to undermine our parental authority….our children are actually taught whining skills to us to buy the products and help secure for brands for that “cradle to grave brand loyalty”. This is so terrible but has become so effective, ugh....The book explains really well how children are marketed to EVERYWHERE–from at home, to school, sports fields, magazines, the Internet, playgrounds, on the street....The book does include many recommendations of what YOU can do to make changes. I appreciated how Linn broke this section down into practical recommendations for people like me!After reading this book and a few others, I’m on board and ready to do my part. It will become part of my social mission to protect my little nugget from this :)
Tuesday, January 11, 2011
Ok, I admit it. I haven’t been one to really jump on board with daily affirmations and I’m not sure why. I’ve tried them over the years and really believe in their power to transform and create your intention…. but…. I always seem to fall off with them after a few days. I know it does take about a month or two (for me) to create a habit that will stick but sometimes it’s a challenge to stay committed to a new practice when life gets in the way. Now this is where I intend to change. Life is what I make it…this I know, so how could things be getting in the way? I let them. I allow myself to choose to let “life” get in the way of doing the things I intend for myself. I am working through why that is and has been while simultaneously working to make sure I create the life through my choices and being aware that everything I think, say, and do matters. So today I have committed to myself to start creating my own affirmations each day to make my daily intention known to myself and to the Universe. I am writing these in my funky journal after I finish my daily writing and intend to visit them at the end of my day once again. I am moving towards a daily practice, cross my fingers:) There are so many great websites for creating affirmations and amazing books to learn the process. For me, my affirmations must be statements I truly can believe, envision, and look in the mirror to say. All of my affirmations begin with “I am” and when I say them out loud, I feel empowered. I found most of the following online but they will be my firsts :)
- I will be enthusiastic and full of energy.
- I will find something I can do today to bring me closer to me
- I will keep my dream alive, no matter what. I will not let anyone discourage me.
- I will accept what I cannot change.
- I will make someone smile unexpectedly today.
- I will make myself smile today.
- I will give everything I do my best effort.
- I will trust my instincts and follow my heart.
- I will live what I love.