As I grieve the loss of my dear Lucy, I thought it might be helpful to write about how 15 pounds of Pure Love changed my life. Lucy was a very special dog. She taught me many things about myself and inspired me to be a better person. And as a therapy dog in my counselling practice she helped change other people’s lives too.
These are Lucy’s special lessons that I will remember:
Approach Life with Curious Eyes and an Open Heart
Lucy woke up every morning with big brown curious eyes that seemed to say, “What’s happening?” She made me smile just to look at her. Even when I wasn’t in the mood, she made me go outside and check out what was going on. If she heard kids playing or a baby crying, she immediately wanted to get involved. She was patient and loving with everyone regardless of age, ability or circumstance. She was a role model for all of us.
At work, Lucy was the “greeter” and the “comfort spaniel”. She provided a welcome and warmth that went beyond my skills as a therapist. She could be fast asleep during a counselling session but if someone became emotional or teary, she would immediately wake up and move toward them. She had an uncanny sense of knowing what people needed. Lucy touched people deeply with her gentle nature and her loving presence.
To learn more about Lucy’s work as a therapy dog, go to my article Moments of Magic.
Count Yourself In
Before I had Lucy, I was often in my own thoughts and would walk past people barely noticing them. If I was in a hurry, sometimes it seemed people were even in my way. This became impossible as the human at the end of her leash. Lucy oozed personality and truly believed that everyone wanted to know her. She regularly approached strangers on our walks. She had this gentle way of inviting attention and connection. As Lucy’s circle of friends grew, our short walk to work became an extended pleasure of meet and greet. I suppose I was just along for the ride! I took note of her wisdom. I learned how to slow down. I met my neighbors and developed a deep sense of belonging in my beautiful neighborhood.
Live in the Present Moment – It’s all we really have
Living in the present moment includes embracing our worst days in the darkest moods as well as our most beautiful experiences. We can’t hold on to what is happening in any moment – all we can do is experience it right here, right now. Knowing this gives me comfort in these early days of grieving Lucy. I know that however intense my experience of loss is, that it will shift and change in time.
And now I’m going to wipe my tears and go outside and see what’s happening…
I am very grateful to all of Lucy’s friends in the neighborhood, at work and beyond.
You were all part of helping me give Lucy a wonderful life.
Rest in peace Lucy…you will be missed.