Wiley's Wisdom

Joy: From the Ground Up

The Truth About The Worst Case September 2, 2014

It’s a little tough for me to wrap my optimistic doggie mind around. To be entirely honest, it’s hard for me to understand how my otherwise positive-thinking mom can even feel this way. Yet she does and I know she has her reasons.

Lately mom has been going through this negative thinking phase in her life. Everything (and I mean everything) is the worst case scenario. Truth be told, it’s tough to watch. Me

If something happens with Carter (he hits his head, cries differently, or basically does anything out of the ordinary), the computer, phone and tablet are instantly all in use searching to make sure he’s okay. She is way more tough than she should be on her post-knee reconstruction surgery and post-baby body. She had a bad dream (or I guess you could say nightmare) the other night about something terrible happening to me. She frequently talks about what emotional turmoil she would/will be in one day if/when my dear forever dad leaves for heaven because he is seven years older than her and because men die seven years sooner than most women that means she will be alone for at least 14 years.

It’s exhausting. Even for me, a doggie that has been through my fair share of things in life. But even thinking about that, I am forced to remember why she might be this way.

Five years ago, she lost a job she loved and her dad died suddenly within two weeks. Given the world of hardship and loss we live in, it might not sound like much. She knows and respects and understands people lose a lot more in one fell swoop all the time. Or they were never fortunate enough to have anything so special to lose in the first place. And, while I know her heart is with these people, I know (and see) the emotional aftermath on an almost daily basis.

It might be tough for me to wrap my optimistic doggie mind around, I understand she has her reasons almost as much as I see the progress she’s made. I know things were bothering her today. I know she had all kinds of negative thoughts running through her head. But she paused and found joy in life moments. She sat on the floor and had a (baby) talk with Carter when she got home from that place called work. Dinner was (for a change) not quite perfect, but she and dad got a good laugh about it regardless. And when the time came for our daily love fest tonight, she was 100% present for that too.

I know life can be tough. I know the worst can happen. But I guess what I learn from my dear forever mom is that even the worst case scenario isn’t really the worst. There are better things in the future. You just have to believe.

 

I Don’t Buy That April 3, 2014

Money is kind of a foreign concept to me. I know my people go to that place called work for it. I know they spend it to buy me things. But the overall concept is one that doesn’t really apply to a dog’s life as I know it.

I frequently find some solace in this, as it seems to do nothing but add stress to the lives of my people. But today I heard something that brought it home. Baby Carter has taken to watching cartoons on what I used to call the big moving picture window in the living room. I now know it as a television, but occasionally I wonder what Carter thinks of that big ole thing.

On the Road AgainHe obviously can’t tell me what he’s thinking at the tender age of three months old, but today I got a sense for it. Mom had the Disney movie “Aladdin” playing and every time the genie was on, Carter smiled. I don’t know if it was the colors or the voice or what. He just smiled so big every single time.

My first thought was how I am right there with him. I frequently long for such a genie to come into my life and grant me wishes. The first of which would be for enough money so mom could stay home with me all the time. Especially now that Carter is in the picture and he brings her the most pure sense of joy I have ever witnessed.

Alas, I won’t be the one to break the news to Carter, but there is no genie. Just like there is no way mom can stay home with him and I all the time. But there was a lesson to take from the song about Aladdin being a street rat.

“Riffraff, street rate, I don’t buy that,” Aladdin sings, “If only they’d look closer. Would they see a poor boy? No siree, they’d find out there’s so much more to me.”

Money might be a fairly foreign concept to me. Especially since I too have lived life as a street rat. But I see a lesson in dear Aladdin’s words that I hope is in some way imparting into baby Carter’s little mind. It doesn’t matter how much money we have. Or what people call us. It doesn’t matter where we come from. It matters where we are going.

 

Making Sense of the Chaos March 26, 2014

You’ve heard it from me. And – if you’re anywhere in the central United States – you’ve been hearing it for months. It’s been a tough winter around here. I’ve done my best to make light of a negative situation, which has been made a lot easier thanks to my mom being home from that place called work for so long. I know it was to take care of baby Carter (not little ole me), but it doesn’t matter.

I’ve loved it. Especially since the weather has kept us all cozy together inside. I know it goes against every canine bone in my body to say this, but it hasn’t been so bad for me. Sure, I miss the warm weather and all things that come with it. I miss walks in the neighborhood, adventures at the dog park and the (rare, but oh so exciting) endeavors beyond city limits. I miss the days when I came first, before this dear little person who I do love so much.Snuggle Bug

But I’ve had my snuggles. I’ve had irreplaceable time with my forever mom. I’ve snuck my way into time with her and baby Carter. And I’ve come to look forward to what happens after mom leaves the door slightly ajar in the morning. That means guests are coming. Guests like Auntie Morgan or mom’s mom, or one (or more!) of mom or dads friends.

It’s a far cry from my former life as sole daytime guardian of the Schmidt abode. There is very little time for myself these days. Less time to drift into the daydream kind of sleep I used to when it was me, myself and I all day long every weekday. Less time to do as I please from my spot in the window. I guess you could say it’s less time to be myself.

But that would be silly. Because I am probably more myself now than ever before. Now I am a companion, not just to my people, but to whomever comes to watch over dear baby Carter. I am a protector of dear baby Carter. And I am myself. Nothing could ever change that.

Not even how awful a winter we’ve had around here. Silly me thinking last winter was rough. This winter has reminded me to slow it down. To remember what really maters. To make sense of the chaos. It’s the only way to live.

Here is the video you’ve heard so much about, featuring my forever family. Note my forever mom picking up dear baby Carter about halfway through, and then her bringing Carter into our kitchen and the end. To me, it brings things full circle. Which is a wonderful place to live.