Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Life lesson learned from a dog, who thankfully does not have an eternal soul and therefore is good for teaching me these things.

Bo is finally, finally all better from his surgery. The other night, we looked at the incision and the last bit of it had finally turned from the angry red color we've been seeing to a normal brown. And it seems like the energy that he didn't expend (or wasn't allowed to expend!) during his recovery was just being stored up until the moment he was finally better. When we jog with him in the mornings, he runs double-speed from one sniff-spot to another, zig-zagging back to us and then off again. It's nice to have him back. :)

I'm not condemning myself here, but I realize that my actions were a big reason why Bo's recovery took so long. I didn't leave the cone on him during the night because I felt bad for him. I felt bad shoving his medication down his throat, so my frustration (when he wouldn't eat it wrapped in ham) just made the experience more stressful for both of us. I felt bad when he wanted to run and play, so I took him on longer walks - which only irritated the incision. Bo didn't know why he had to take it easy on exercise, or why he had to take medication, or why he had to wear the cone. And he didn't like any of it. But I knew why those things were necessary, yet I didn't follow through because I felt bad.

God doesn't do that for us, and I'm so thankful. God doesn't spare us from consequences or even spare us from pain that He knows will strengthen us and grow the spirit of Christ in us. Even though I don't have children yet, this experience with Bo taught me that a loving parent does what's best for their child, even when they feel bad about it.

I'm thankful that my parents disciplined me. I'm thankful that they sometimes allowed me to go through experiences that I hated because they knew it was what I needed. As sorry as I felt for Bo, I imagine I'd be even more sympathetic toward my child. But I hope I will be a parent that does what's best, like my parents did.

Right now, Bo is out on the deck. He sees something off in the woods that he wants to chase, and he's whining and fussing for me to move the chairs and let him go. But I know it's not a good time for him to go roaming around the neighborhood, unattended, even though he so badly wants to. I've got to tell him no, not right now. And I just did. :)


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