Somehow, I need to find the best way to re-introduce you to them and especially to Dolores. She is now back in training to be a therapy dog and it is a good thing. If ever there was a dog more fit to love and help people, I never saw one. She has these big, soulful eyes and she looks at you so deeply, no words are ever needed.
You never doubt that she not only loves and wants to help you, but she understands the importance of touching. The moment she gets close enough to you, she lays her sweet head next to yours and then she instinctively lays her hurt leg in your lap. It is almost like she is telling you that she knows about pain and suffering and about disappointment.
Dolores has this amazing capacity to love a human so much that she actually cries out loud until she can close the gap between the two of you and she can touch you. She knows about touching.
Now that you are properly reintroduced to this dog, let me tell you this story. If you’ve been reading my latest “View” columns, you are aware that our entire Colorado family has gone through some very difficult times lately.
Because I always try to help carry any physical or emotional traumas, by the time the worst was over and everybody was finally on the mend, I just sort of folded. Everything made me cry — the good, the bad, and just the utter fatigue I felt. I knew I needed help. I called Terry to make a date for her, me and Dolores to simply go to sit by the river. It was clear that Dolores was an integral part of the date.
The next day at noon, Terry drove up to my house and honked. Dolores was sitting in the front passenger seat, and when she saw me walk towards the car, she began to cry. She continued to cry while she went to the back seat and I sat in the front. She cried until she could lay her head next to mine and present me with her damaged front leg and, with a deep sigh, she was quiet as I wrapped my arms around her soft body. It was I who cried then, just feeling this deep connection we shared.
We found a table and two chairs in the shade and close enough to the water to hear it singing. Dolores laid under the table with her head on my feet as Terry and I talked and listened and shared the lovely silence that can exist between two friends. Every so often, each of us reached down to stroke Dolores’ body, both of us aware of the peace she gave us in the stroking.
I know I must sound like a broken record when I talk so much about the deep, almost spiritual, relationship that can develop between animal and human. Forgive me. It is just that I am so constantly moved by having this in my own life that I want to make sure that you, my readers and my friends, experience the same joy. All I know is that spending just two hours with Dolores and Terry sitting next to the Arkansas River made all the difference in how I was seeing and feeling life that day.
The view from the mountains is wondrous.