Meet my dog Karma: part golden retriever, part chow, and part Welsh corgi. This picture was taken a couple of Halloweens ago, when he dressed up as Batman. Adorable, right?
Karma made his appearance in our subdivision in the spring of 2003. He took turns sleeping on various front porches; we posted flyers and checked with area vets hoping to find his owner but no one claimed him. Since it isn't safe to have stray dogs roaming in the suburbs, the across-the-street neighbors said if someone didn't adopt him they would have to take him to the pound. They really wanted to keep him but they already had two big dogs; it seemed that everyone else already owned a dog, too.
Except us. Because, as I explained most emphatically, I am NOT a "dog person"; I am a "cat person," but because my middle son is allergic to cats, I cannot have a feline in the house. In the end, though, I was unable to resist the pleading of those three pairs of little-boy eyes, and I was not surprised when their promises to feed, water and brush our new pet were quickly forgotten. In no time, Karma became MY dog, although I didn't realize how much I loved him until he became really, really sick after ingesting an entire grilled cheese sandwich. The moment I dropped him off at the emergency clinic, not knowing whether or not he would ever come home, everything changed.
From Karma, I have learned what the term "unconditional love" means. He follows me everywhere I go, gets depressed when I am away, and would die if necessary to protect me from harm. Also, he reminds me of the importance of cherishing every moment; yesterday, when I picked him up from a routine grooming, the vet tech recommended a couple of medical procedures for him now that he is "geriatric." It seems that that any dog over the age of seven is considered a senior citizen - who knew?
Most important, I have learned not to define myself too narrowly. Because the universe just might have a lesson in store for me. It turns out I am a "dog person," after all.
Megan - Roswell, GA
Have you ever felt like you were at a crossroads in life? Like you had a decision to make that, unlike some others, may actually determine the greater course of your life? I’ve felt like that more often in recent years, so today I’m sharing with you my favorite photo of my son. Doesn’t it just have “decision” written all over it? Don’t you hear the lines of The Road Not Travelled echoing in your head?
…. I will be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence.
Two roads diverged in a wood and I,
I took the one less travelled by
And that has made all the difference.
~ Robert Frost
It speaks to me so much I use it as the header graphic for my personal blog. It hangs on the wall in my front hall. I’m considering making it into a coffee mug. Want one?
I remember the day that I took this photo. It was early Spring and my son was a few months shy of 2 years old. My daughter wasn’t quite 2 months old, and I had not been out of my house without her… ever. This fine, gloomy, misty morning I decided to give my husband some Daddy-daughter time, and I got out onto our neighborhood trails with my son and my camera. And I caught this image. It seemed so right for the moment in time. We were a new family, a family of 4 rather than 3, with expanded roles and changed dynamics. It was a time of change, and we could fight it or roll with it.
So we rolled with it. And we’ve been rolling ever since. I could go into how we’ve also gone down some interesting, “less travelled” roads – as individuals and as a family. But not today. Today is for this moment and this photo. Peace out.
Lindy - Decatur, Georgia
It was four days in Gulf Shores, Alabama. There were fireworks, plenty of sunshine, two girlfriends and their two little girls. I couldn't have asked for better. I couldn't have asked for more. I actually sat back and rendered a loud, "Ahhhhh..."
Comment for another chance to win a Writers Li.P.P. t-shirt in our drawing at midnight on Sunday. Follow this blog too and you will be entered twice. Last week's winner is Tami. Congratulations, Tami - and thanks to all of you for your support!