Posted in Animals, Pets

The heart of a lion

It’s always a great honor when a fellow blogger believes in what you have to say, and asks you to do a guest post on his/her blog. It’s exactly what happened when notdonner from a dogtown.blog asked me to do so. I was so humbled and happy, yet it has taking me eons to respond back and finally write my contribution. I could blame it on a number of things but I won’t. There simply is no excuse as to why it has taken me so long, and a huge thanks goes out to notdonner for inviting me. It means a lot, and here it finally is. I hope you enjoy this little story.

I want to talk about Nikki and the special bond that we shared. This story is about overcoming challenges and the things we can learn from each other. I’m sure these lines on here will find nothing but dog lovers, although I’m aware that somewhere else she might appear as just a dog, or a pet. But Nikki was so much more than that, she was my fur baby, and over the years she taught me a thing or two.

Her life started very rough, coming from an abused background, which took years of rehabilitation to regain her trust. Humans had done her wrong in the worst way during her short one and a half year old life. What was left were broken bones and a malnourished, scared, little soul that was nothing but skin and bones after an initial brushing.

It was no wonder that she was food aggressive in the beginning, and would inhale anything she was given. Despite of being the second to come into the family, she quickly put my same age Akita Pit mix in his place by making it known that she was the boss now. After a few weeks and a few flesh wounds, biting him, I was near the unwanted decision of having to give her up to a shelter. I knew it couldn’t continue the way it was, and my loyalty had to be with my first dog which I had raised from little on. He could have easily hurt her, but he grew up as a gentle giant and without aggression. It was as if he already knew about her painful past and therefore never bite her. He simply showed patience and endured. Even if it meant gaining painful wounds from her razor sharp fangs. He too taught me that sometimes we have to endure the storms and it’s not always wise to fight back.

I remember sitting with Nikki, holding her, and telling her that she needed to stop. As if she could understand, I talked to her as if she was a person. “I can’t keep you if you keep this up” I told her, while pleading with her. Miraculously she stopped shortly after our talk, and now took on a motherly role. The flesh wounds turned into loving licks and kisses and it was the end of all the fighting. She replaced her food aggression with daily grooming sessions that Sparky had to endure. She wouldn’t stop until he was properly groomed, and if he turned his head away from her, she simply walked around to the other side to continue her task. Much had changed from fighting for scraps, defending herself, and being on her own. She had adapted to her new role full of compassion and harmony. The transition was quite remarkable, she had found her forever home and was loved in a way to make up for all the bad she has encountered before. I’m sure she never forget, but the gratefulness in her eyes is something I will never forget.

Eventually she wasn’t afraid of the hand reaching down to pet her, and stopped ducking. It became play, and years later she turned into her true self, a compassionate, but feisty and playful little pup. It was the first time I got to see the “Shiba 500”. If you don’t know what that is, it’s when your dog all of a sudden takes off running as being chased by the devil, from one end of the house to the other, around in circles, flying and leaping through the air, with ears back, smiling like crazy, bowing their front legs with their bottoms up in the air, only to take off running again. It’s the funniest thing you will see as you take cover to get out of the way.

Nikki was heartbroken and went into extreme mourning as my other dog passed. He had become everything to her and she stopped eating and lost all joy of life. I had to intervene and it was then that Nikki took up hiking, late in life, but not too late. She eventually found purpose again and a passion for Mother Nature. She loved her time outside and we helped each other get past our loss. She was the best dog anyone could ever have and lived for nearly another two years. Looking back, I’m not sure who saved who, and our bond and relationship was very special. So special indeed that I became a lifelong fan of her breed.

What I learned from her is that sometimes you have to stand up in life and defend yourself. That sometimes you just have to be the boss and take ownership, but you can just as quick lay down the role when it no longer serves the situation. She demonstrated so beautifully what a big heart she had and that it is possible to forgive those that harm us and move on. We all get hurt along the way, and it’s par for the course. It shapes us into who we are ultimately meant to be.

Nikki reminded me that there will be moments where you have to adapt and compromise. Not necessarily because you have to fit in, but to hold on to your uniqueness while respecting others to live and let live. To love unconditionally, and to never take a day for granted. She had the heart of lion and never gave up, despite her health challenges along the way. Her frail bones ached as she struggled to adjust to her age, but her heart remained full of adventure and spirit. She was a fighter and showed me that it is possible to overcome great loss, although I never managed to get over losing her. There are days I find little consolidation knowing that I alleviated the suffering for her in the end. It’s something I constantly have to remind myself of when my heart aches because I miss her. I wish that I could hold her and see that crazy smile, running through the house again. Nikki was a special family member and I know you understand. I’m sure you also have a beautiful story to tell about your special relationship with your four legged child.

I’m sending a giant hug to you and yours tonight with a reminder to hug tight and love like no tomorrow.

Thank you so much for letting me share this story and for your time. And please don’t forget to stop by at notdonner if you haven’t already and pay a visit. ❤️

#dogtown.blog #notdonner

Advertisements

Author:

Who am I, and why I write. I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one. I am the one, holding on to the silver lining when the skies are gray. I’m a believer that nothing is coincidence, but that everything has purpose. I’ve made my mistakes, don’t we all, but I see them as growing pains and they are a part of who I am today. I have lost myself in order to find myself, and I still do from time to time, but in a good way. I’m a big child who laughs until my belly hurts when life wants to be serious. Career wise: I’ve been there, done that, and I took “The jump” off the hamster wheel in an effort to change my future. I didn’t land all that soft, but I can say that I’m still proud to have found the courage to do it. Coming full circle, I had it all, and yet I was lonely and had nothing. Today I choose to be a collector of moments and I chase memories, instead of the material stuff. Less is more, and the motto is quality over quantity. You’d be amazed at how freeing it can be. I see myself as a free spirit that believes in an unconventional lifestyle. Somehow I go against the grain most of the times, not to rebel, but because it feels right to stay true to my unique and authentic self. It takes courage, and you often stand alone, but if you dare, you soon realize that it is the only way if you don’t want to lose who you are. Just like most, my past wasn’t easy and I come from a life that didn’t always give me the opportunity to be heard. Few related and even fewer cared to take the time. But that’s the past and it’s history, the future hasn’t happened and the “NOW” is truly all we ever have. In the end we all have a story to tell, and we all seek to be understood. We all yearn to be heard and accepted and still life is hard and our path is full of stumbling blocks. If we can see the lessons in adversity we may realize that the toughest moments are often our greatest teachers. There is a reason for the saying that the stars can’t shine without darkness, and it might be darkness that will show you the light.
It took a series of (un)fortunate events, to learn to glow through the pain, to learn how to dance in the rain. I believe in Magic and wonder, and the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. As an empath this old soul often feels a little too much, but I wouldn’t have it any other way.
Today, I am here to tell my story because I believe that it can help others. It is my hope to bring inspiration and strengths to you, while showing you that it can be done. I know you are out there, and I know you are suffering in silence. I am here to tell you that you are not alone, and your voice is being heard loud and clear. Hang on and be strong, transformation is yours. 
In light and love....Rhapsody Bohème 💙🦋

7 thoughts on “The heart of a lion

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s