Friday, July 15, 2016

Time....

Relationships take time....friends, lovers, grandchildren, dogs.  In my heart, I've known this...although there were times when I did not listen; times where I jumped into a relationship without going through the steps of developing and learning and listening...all those tiny steps that make for strength, deepness and trusting.  I'm challenging myself to take time.....all the time it needs to nurture all that I am longing for in life.



I'm working a new-to-me little dog that has been here for three weeks.  She is all trained up and shiny in the right hands.  But for me, I have my own way of doing things; my own way of communicating......and she does not understand me, at least not at this point.  In three weeks, we have done a lot.....real work pushing to sort lambs for shipping, small field work to develop understanding and trust, and a little big field work.  Most days, in the familiar, she is coming along with me.

That old phrase "it takes a year to partner up with a dog" is such a great reminder when things go...well, really wrong!  At a recent trial, I thought perhaps...with all our "coming along" I could exhaust a little with her.  And with that....pretty much everything that could go wrong on an exhaust did.....well, we did not run sheep into the fence but we did everything else really wrong.  It was a good day for me to practice all the things a good developing relationship needs to continue to be deeper and filled with trust and understanding.  I went and helped her.......immediately..... I got what I could while whisking the sheep off the field..... then, we stopped.

This relationship needs more time!  We need to chat on the phone a little, go to lunch, laugh, share experiences, watch a few movies.....all the little things that happen as a friendship begins.  I can't expect her to go from "not knowing me" to " best friend" without the time and miles.  This dog brings such perspective and I'm grateful for the reminder!!

I'm working on three things...all of which I wrote on my hand at the recent trial.  I wrote it in ink on the back side of my hand so when I looked down I would see the words and remember:

CALM
QUIET
FAIR

Bella loves it when I run with those three qualities.  Our relationship has the time behind it, plus the miles...and when I am really calm, and very quiet, and honestly fair....she shines.  I stumbled a few times while I ran her this weekend...but, with my eyes wide open....she told me when I was off.  For me, that is exactly how relationships, the good ones anyway, work.  The give and take in communication, the adjustments made based on the feedback, that miraculous dance that occurs when the partnership is in sync.....yep, this is why I go back for more.

In talking with a friend about all the above, I came to the conclusion, yet again....changing myself, growing myself, developing myself is my highest calling.  I mean really, the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results, right?  I love it when my dogs give me their all......I owe it to them to keep to my task of giving them my all right back...calm, quiet, and fair.  And when "it" goes to crap...because there will be days it will.....the relationship will be the calm in the storm.....if the time was invested.

These are the things I need to remember......

Seize the Day!

Sunday, July 3, 2016

My Addiction

I journal....no surprise that I write out all my inner most over thinking.  Writing helps me sort me.....and I do go back and read what I have written.  They say the definition to insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result....so I read myself to see what insanity I have going on.  I could do a secret true confession here and tell you I am addicted to sugar.....yep.  But really my epiphany from reading myself is...I am addicted to STRIVING.

I wondered if my addiction is unique to me...or if it is a human nature issue....that striving for more/better/change; cleaner flanks, bigger outruns, more sheep.......the list goes on and on for the things I fall into striving for.  Perhaps I strive to keep myself from falling into "settling" which is a huge fear of mine.  Not giving my all and falling short to then feel the disappointment and excuse turning into "well that was the best I could do" knowing that I gave only half a heart.

If one edge of the knife is "settling" is the other "always striving?"  The idea really smacked me after I ran my half marathon last year......it took me a good year to train and fundraise. The whole trip was magical and the run itself was a dream come true experience. But after the race......there was this huge hole in me......I'd achieved my goal and then....now what?  A faster half marathon, a longer race, a race in Europe...all the possibilities and yet that feeling of "that was it?"

Having a bit of a critical nature, being a bit of a perfectionist...well those two traits really hold hands to create a purpose of never ending striving.  I look around and see that striving might be a human "issue" really.  All those striving for more...better dogs, bigger land, thinner bodies, more money.  Of course when you mix in some comparison with the striving...well, holy hell, Batman!

I'm off to a sheepdog trail this coming weekend.......I've trained a bit and worked a lot more.  We shipped lambs on Thursday and Sis got some hard pen work mixed with learning to work with me on a quad.  I love the days of work.....with or without the dogs.  I'll head to the trial; the little test to see what I have in my relationships with my girls...how far I've come with the work in me and my fairness and partnership.  And somehow, I hope to find the tip of my knife; that little place between 'settling' and 'striving'......that place where I know....life is good!

seize the day