There’s a New Man in my life. Not that his presence hasn’t brought its own set of complications and responsibilities (as all new relationships with males tend to do), but he has rekindled the laughter and love that has been missing for a very long time. A special joy.
My New Man has made me realize what unconditional love – which all parents understand (I have no children) – is all about. When I am gone for any period of time, he misses me terribly (as I do, him) and is excited to see me upon my return, full of warmth and kisses that just make my heart melt. His affection can bring me out of the darkest of moods. And, according to my doctor, my blood pressure has dropped to a point where I may be able to give up the meds. (NB: In all fairness, this may also be due to the absence of my soon-to-be ex-husband.)
My New Man is often at my side, watches TV with me at night and hangs out in the office during the daytime. His warm body lies close to me in bed, and I smile as he hogs my pillow at times and snores. We go on long walks together, enjoying the nature that is found around our country home. He is my protector, always alert. He loves my family and friends, and they adore him.
No, my New Man is not the two-legged variety. He’s my dog, Cody, a male Dachshund/Basset Hound mix puppy that I adopted from Adirondack Save-a-Stray (a no-kill animal shelter) up the road from where I live. I saw him one day when I was delivering my bi-weekly supply of newspapers (which are desperately needed for animal cages, by the way) to them. He looked up at me with woeful eyes that asked to be taken home … so I did. And it’s been a wonderful love affair ever since.
Adding a dog, cat or other pet to your household should not be a “spur of the moment” decision. Rather, it is something to be well considered. For me, I had been planning to get a dog for some time, although I was steering towards a female Labrador Retriever (from a rescue group) and not Cody! Because I travel for work, it was important for me to have someone who was an animal lover and would enjoy caring for Cody (and my cats) as much as I do during my absence … which I found in my good friend, Kim. Kim lives down the road, and has a handsome Golden/Labrador Retriever mix – Tobi – from the same rescue group. In fact, she encouraged me to get a dog after my husband’s abrupt departure. Cody and Tobi hit it off, and I imagine provided some entertainment for Kim and her family during Cody’s recent visit. Tobi will be our welcome guest when Kim and her family go on vacation next summer … or any time.
I hope others find joy in adopting a pet from an animal shelter, giving them a permanent “furever home”. The “second chance” at love you give these deserving dogs and cats (I adopted a cat from the same animal shelter several years ago, and she has been a wonderful pet as well) will be returned to you in spades. And yes, it may even drop your blood pressure in the process.
May you experience love in your hearts during the Holiday Season and always ~