Wiley's Wisdom

Joy: From the Ground Up

A Dog’s Year In Review January 13, 2014

I think we all had a feeling. And it wasn’t even the kind of feeling that we really just wanted it to be over and behind us. It was the kind of feeling where we just knew we were ready for the next chapter. So it was really no surprise to me when Carter Joseph Schmidt entered the world almost three weeks early. Looking Forward

Tomorrow marks his two-week birthday (still a couple days short of the January 16 due date) of December 31. It also marks the two-week observation of New Year’s Resolutions for people all over the world who aspire to make 2014 the best year ever. For some, these resolutions – eating better, exercising more, finally kicking that bad habit – are in full swing. For others, they’ve already been forgotten.

That’s why I don’t particularly care for the theory behind resolutions. So last year I resolved not to make resolutions. Instead, I set goals for myself to live in the spirit of Christmas every day, love actively and live life forward. Because in reality you can’t really put Christmas away when you live a life of joy. From the ground up, it makes its way into everything you do. Everything you are. So I committed to living life forward by sharing everything I am with the world, hoping to touch a few hearts in the process.

Little did I know the impact a little terrier mutt like me could have on the world with something as simple as my perspective on the everyday happenings in my world. My musings have hardly gone “viral,” and yet I am touched daily by the kind words of readers who I have come to see as a whole other kind of family in my life.

Family has taken on a whole new meaning to me this past year. I’ve always been a people watcher, but as I have observed my little family more closely this year, I have learned so much about people. And relationships. And love. From the moment I knew mom was pregnant to the first time I met Carter, family means something bigger now.

I would say 2013 was a success. Not just because I  (for the most part) met my (somewhat challenging at times) goals. But because doing so helped me get to know myself a little better. And getting to know oneself is always the first crucial step in being able to truly help others in the most selfless of ways.

My feelings about when Carter was due to arrive were right. Maybe my feelings about 2014 will be too. And I am ready for the next chapter. Because if its anywhere as good as the last one, I know it with all of my little doggie heart. I have a lot to look forward to.

Happy trails in 2014, ya’ll.

 

 

Not For Doggies September 12, 2013

I love you. You complete me. Eat pray love. When it comes to three-word phrases, less is more. And (uncharacteristically) I love that. Unless the sentence is “not for doggies,” in which case please keep your thoughts to yourself.

I hear it all the time in my house, and it breaks my little doggie heart every time. Grapes? Not for doggies. That delicious smelling melty stuff called chocolate? Not for doggies. Onions and garlic? Not for doggies.Yummy

Why (oh why?) must all of these things that (I think) would bring me happiness be off limits? Moreover, don’t people realize that they are even more attractive when I am told they aren’t for me? It’s not fair.

Perhaps that’s part of the problem. I am making up my mind about what is and is not fair without all the information. Sure, I think these things would bring me happiness, but would they really? My people generally provide me with all things joyful, so there must be another reason I can’t sneak a grape, lick up the chocolate frosting off the floor or swoop up one of those delicious-smelling garlic cloves when it occasionally flies off the cutting board.

Mmmm...Ice CreamThis occurred to me as I’ve noticed that for some time now there have been many things that are also not for mommies. That baked brie mom loves to serve at parties with apple wedges? Not for mommies. The glass of wine (or two) with dinner? Not for mommies. Those foul-smelling little seafood rollups (I think they’re called sushi)? Not for mommies.

At first I felt smug about it. Like she’s getting a taste of her own medicine. Not for pregnant ladies is her version of food-related torture. But that didn’t last long as it is not akin to my normally loving and optimistic way of thinking.

So I’ve come full circle to the only conclusion that makes sense. Not for mommies is a way of life right now because she’s putting the baby first. Who cares how much she loves brie, wine, and sushi if these things could harm the baby?

Finally I think I understand. Not for doggies is for my own good. There must be something about grapes, chocolate, garlic and onions that is bad for me. That doesn’t mean I’m going to stop trying to gobble it up any chance I get, but at least now I know the reason for the madness. Maybe “not for doggies” is more akin to “I love you” than I thought. Because we don’t always know what’s good for us, so it’s a good thing someone does.