Wiley's Wisdom

Joy: From the Ground Up

Just Be My Friend October 9, 2014

Filed under: Man's Best Friend — Wiley Schmidt @ 8:33 pm
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I’ve done a bad thing. I think awful terrible bad days have a silver lining after all. Other than tomorrow. Other than a new day. From Up Above

I figured it out shortly after I published my post last night. It only took a few minutes for me to get a supportive comment. A proverbial shoulder to cry on. Somebody cared. Correction – somebodies cared.

I know it sounds silly, but sometimes when you’re amid the emotional trainwreck of a day like yesterday, it’s easy to lose sight of the things that matter. Like the silver lining. Like friendship and support from people like you.

Friendship. From the ground up, I am blessed to have good people in my life. People who may have bad days of their own, yet put their emotions aside to help others. Sometimes its through emotional help, like offering a caring ear. Or through physical help, like offering a hand with something.

The kind of help doesn’t matter. What matters is there are people there.

It reminds me of the words of French Nobel prize winning writer Albert Camus, who said “don’t walk behind me; I may not lead. Don’t walk in front of me; I may not follow. Just walk beside me and be my friend.”

Thank you for bringing these words to life for me yesterday and for restoring the hope in the silver lining I always knew was there.

This post was written in response to the “Ready, Set Go!” daily prompt.

 

The Walk of Friendship July 22, 2014

I’m not ashamed to admit it. After all, everyone has their flaws, right? Mine are few and far between (of course), but I do have them like anyone else. One of them finds its home in one of my very favorite activities: the walk.
It doesn’t matter whether it’s a quick jaunt around the block or a hike on a beautiful mountain trail. That obedience school business of walking alongside my forever mom or dad? Forget about it. It’s just one of those things I haven’t quite mastered and I would be lying if I said I wanted to because I don’t. I like feeling (somewhat) free to smell and investigate and learn and meet new animals and their people. It’s nothing against my walker at the time. These are the things that bring a walk to life in my opinion.
But today I got to thinking about it within the psychological construct of friendship. Mom and dad and dear baby Carter left for a few hours tonight to go see some friends they haven’t seen much of since mom changed jobs a few months back. These are all good friends who my mom loves and I love by proxy. They have all come and gone as Carter was a newborn and now an infant. But time and distance has made it harder to get together recently. Until tonight.Friends
Tonight all they got together and caught up and smiled and laughed. (I only wished I’d been there to see it (not only because I love seeing my people happy, but also because I miss these people). Instead, I heard the evening recapped upon their return home, which was (almost) as good as being there in doggie person. Because there was joy in friendship tonight.
It’s the kind of friendship French-Algerian philosopher Albert Camus wrote of when he said “don’t walk behind me; I may not lead. Don’t walk in front of me; I may not follow. Just walk beside me and be my friend.”
I’m happy for my people they have friends who walk beside them. Even when they fall behind or run ahead, they all catch up from time to time. And those are the moments that make me think. Maybe I’ve been going about the whole walk thing the wrong way. Dogs are a man’s best friend after all. It might be time to make a change. In the meantime, though, I will give thanks for friendship. From the ground up, it really is a sparkplug for joy.
 

A Second Spring October 2, 2013

We see clearly but not in every color. We hear a pin drop from one hundred feet away. We can taste the difference between health food and people bacon. The more than 200 million receptor follicles in our noses can smell diseases. But (at least in my opinion) we canines are cut off at the proverbial knees if you take away our ability to feel. And today I feel blessed.

It happened suddenly on my twilight walk around the neighborhood with mom tonight. I had one of those overwhelming senses of peace. Happiness. Joy, from the ground up. And I have all of my senses to thank. That, and the true beauty that is fall in my tiny piece of the world.

The trees have begun turning all sorts of varying shades of gorgeous. Sure, I can’t see it nearly as vividly as my people, but I can tell something magical is happening. To me it’s all its own kind of sunshine. The leaves that fall are the rays that leave crunchy paths of novelty along my otherwise familiar route. It reminds me a little of the peace I hear when the snow falls. I don’t know whether people hear it or not, but I sure do.

And don’t even get me started on the smells. Though I do still catch a whiff of grilled goodness wafting through the air, it has mostly been replaced with burning wood and leaves. And candles that smell like cinnamon and caramel. And pies in the oven that smell like all kinds of delicious fruits of the season. (Did I mention my love for apples?)

“Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower,” suggested French philosopher Albert Camus.

How special then that these sights, sounds and smells all align around this season of harvest. Just as crops are now ripened and gathered this time of year, we are blessed with a veritable pantheon of potential sources of joy, happiness and peace. Trusting in our senses is perhaps the most basic way to soak it all in, and (at least in my humble doggie opinion) may even be the most powerful.

So today I saw my second spring. I listened. I smelled. And I felt it. Joy from the ground up falling down around me amidst the leaves.

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