I had a beautiful little Westie dog named Bert for over sixteen years. Do you know how old that is in people years? Lots! He was a great little guy, always patient and always up for a walk. I say little because he was small for his breed. We got him from a foster home because he had been abused as a puppy.

We gave him love and attention and care. Still all his life he was afraid when we brought out the broom. He remembered what his early life experience had been.

I learned a profound lesson from him about this. Even though early life had been rough it did not make him bitter. He did not bite, he did not bark very much and when people would come over he would show them affection too. In some way he found the willingness to move on.

When Bert was about eight he developed diabetes. He required two shots of insulin a day. That taught me the lesson of focus and attention with patience.

It also taught me to treat each being with compassion and presence whether they were animal or human.

As Bert got older he became deaf and blind.  Still his energy was amazingly strong. He would wander around the house until someone would take him for a walk.

The lesson I learned was even if you can’t see or hear you can still play the game. Bert never quit.

In his final days he would walk around the house and get himself trapped under a chair or desk. Instead of fighting it he would just lie down and go to sleep until we found him.

The lesson I learned was that when the going gets tough it’s best not to fight it. Go with the flow and when you get the chance take a rest and let your mind and heart clear. Something will show up to help the situation.

As you go through life you will learn many lessons. Some will be helpful and perhaps some not. In any case pay attention to what you are learning and where it is coming from. You may learn the best lessons from the oddest sources.

 Howiej

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