Joy’s Journey

Today’s adventure:

This morning began early, I woke up at 5:51am. I thought about going back to sleep, but I realized I was awake and when I tried to lay back down, Joy, my Golden Retriever, was all over my pillow with her head with mine and she was awake too. The cat had already been in my room and he’d come back on the bed now as well. Then, when he crawled on my chest, Joy jumped off the bed and it was a matter of seconds before she barked at the back door to go out. So… I was up.

I let her out and followed her onto the deck. I sat in my wooden chair, my command center, and without my notebook or phone, or anything decided to do my meditation right then and there. I did it and it was good, very good. I followed my normal process and I was pleased and felt wonderful, but very quickly, instantaneously really, forgot my experience without my notebook or phone to record during my session. It was what it was, and I went inside.

I washed up with the delicious and wonderful skin products that I’d just begun using 45 days or so ago. I love them and my skin does too! For some miracle, my hair looked fairly good down this morning – that’s a first, believe me, so, I brushed it a little and went about starting the morning.

I went to my bed and Joy was there waiting with her paws dangling off the side in anticipation of breakfast and the day. I fed her and the cat and saw the creeping of the dawn beginning to the east out my kitchen door. Just two blocks away, is the most spectacular place on the planet, in my opinion, the beach. The Atlantic Ocean is my sanctuary and favorite place to be and the sun would be up soon. I started to change my clothes and Joy was back on the bed waiting for what was next on the agenda, her agenda! As I grabbed my tennis shoes, I whispered to her that we were going for a walk. Just the hint of the word walk elicited a reaction in her that was unable to be contained! I took a quick video and a photo of her going crazy for what was to come. I grabbed my phone, a little bag for Joy, in case she had an accident, my camera, put on Joy’s leash, and we were out the door. She was on her walk and she could cross that off her itinerary now that we had begun.

Onwards to the beach we walked. She knew the way. She could lead me there blindly, either one of us could be blind, she knew the way. Her new leash worked fantastically and it (hardly) let her pull me, which was excellent for me and my new hip. Nearly 11 months have passed since my surgery and I haven’t felt so amazing in years. We walked the two blocks and crossed A1A.

Clouds in the sky, I googled the time of the sunrise. 7:01am, and it was 6:58am. Perfect timing. Nature would bestow what perfection would become with the gray clouds, but I believed it would be spectacular no matter. Just the fact that we were going to put our feet on the sand was excellent enough for me. Dogs are not allowed on this section of the beach. Less than a year ago, Joy began training as an emotional support/therapy dog with an incredible ex-soldier, wounded in combat, who now trains dogs for just this purpose. She is allowed on the beach with me for this reason, but I respected the regulations at the beach anyway and kept her back along the ledge wall as we watched the sunrise quietly with the birds.

She loved digging in the sand while I took my pictures. She had her agenda, and it was not my photography session, but she obliged me anyway and even posed for me. I had no doubt that she was the Diva and she tried to dictate her plan, while she stayed busy digging in the sand to the other side of the earth.

The sun rose this morning in an amazing shade of ambrosia and pure gold seen with the naked eye. The camera captured the beauty of the miraculous sight, best it could. The birds were on standby for me, as usual, ready to be called into the photo, and today there was a plethora of them in the sky ready for the queue. The sun did its thing, Joy did hers and I took pictures best possible while I held the leash with a dog that was trying to dig to China in the sand. Dogs did this, she did this. I even got her to stop and pose for a couple of shots in front of the incredible view and unfolding of the day. I wonder if she knew how breathtaking it was to witness. I knew to watch her as part of the package brought me utter joy, so maybe she understood perfectly. You might have agreed as you have now begun on this journey with us and have seen some pictures for yourselves.

After the sun erupted from the horizon and lifted its way into the clouds, it was covered temporarily, only to be contained a little, as it held so much power. Shortly, the rays streaked their way out where they could and I caught a few more shots. Then, a person had begun walking by us and we caught each other’s glances and smiled at one another. He smiled down at Joy, most everyone does, even though there are many that do not, and that is ok, since I can’t force anyone to experience Joy. He came over to pet her and we talked briefly.

He shared that he had had a Golden Retriever once and loved it so much. It passed on and had broken his heart and he had not gotten another. I shared that I have lost 2 Goldens and each one had been a loss for me too. I shared that when Joy was put in my arms, at the right time it was for me to have had this third Golden beauty, the hole in my heart sealed instantly. I knew this was for now, but isn’t everything, anyway, just for now?

He also told me about his son who had found a dog that had buried a hole to die by his dock slip. That he had come across him, rinsed him off and loved him back to life. He shared pictures with me, of the rinsing off and then the dog now. His son took the dog everywhere with him, he even rode on his motorcycle with him with sunglasses on. The dog, and I imagine the son, were incredibly happy – in fact, I had no doubt. I asked the man his name and I shared mine and Joy’s and we parted ways. Before he left, I planted a seed for him to get another dog, to risk it again, as dogs teach us how to love. I have not only lost dogs, but many close people, tragically in fact, and I shared that with him too. I told him my purpose was now to spread Joy and love and I spread the sparkle one person at a time. He touched my life with his story and I hoped we did with ours. That’s what it’s all about. We walked home.

Joy got a bone and decided it was best to bury it in her hole in the backyard, another route to China, while I wrote in my notebook. We went inside after she was done, not me, her agenda, not mine she is the Diva, LOL. Once in the kitchen, she got her water and crashed on the cool tile of our Florida home. I got my laptop and typed this. This was our adventure this morning. It was only 9:49am, and we still had the whole day ahead.

My youngest son was awake, my sweet sunshine. He has Autism and was my rate-limiting step of every day. I have been a pharmacist for 20 years and have had many a chemistry lesson. I remembered after he was born about rate-limiting steps and how they dictate the actions of chemical elements in equations. He is mine. Sometimes his/my life worked quickly and other times slow and even other days completely unexpectedly. He will always be my sunshine and my teacher and besides, that is a whole separate blog! Until next time!

XOXO, Chara.