Thursday, May 31, 2007

Finding the Light

Lucky Man

I just got back from taking Lucky Man for his daily swim. You remember a few months back I wrote about his tragic encounter with a bullet. In fact that post, "Seeking the Light," has been one of our most popular posts.

Some unspeakable excuse for a human being aimed their gun at the beautiful dog, we have raised from a puppy, and used him as target practice. This is the dog that instead of fetching the stick out of the water would bark at the stick until his buddies brought it into him to snatch away. Lucky Man loved nothing more than to run free in the woods and get on the scent of a stray deer. He never bothered anyone that we can determine, and believe me we canvassed the neighborhood.

Instead of killing Lucky Man, this "Great White Warrior with a .22 caliber gun" shattered LM's left front elbow, altering his destiny forever. When I wrote the post,"Seeking the Light," I was full of despair. Not one to be a terribly demonstrative griever, I found myself on the floor of the stainless steel kennel with Lucky Man, sobbing uncontrollably after his surgery. It wasn't that he was injured, it was that he had to wake in a world where someone would do that to an animal, even one as majestic and proud as he is.

It has taken months, but LM is gradually recovering. We tease him and call him hopalong, but he is strong and determined. But most of all he is humble and accepting of his plight. I have always said, humans can intellectualize what "unconditional love" is, but only our pets can offer it.

Each little advance Lucky Man makes, gives way to optimism that he might return to his former state physically. Emotionally he is a different animal. Once able to run in the woods, he is confined to a leash only. He spends much of his day sleeping, instead of on point. Chili Pepper, our little dachshund who adores Lucky Man has found himself taking up new responsibilities, such as lead watch dog. His companion can no longer accompany him on investigative forays, and roughhousing is severely restricted.

Now when we swim it, is for physical therapy. LM remains on a leash. He is the one getting the stick, and Chili Pepper stays on the beach barking the stick in. This activity requires some swimming on my part as well.

At the point where the vet releases us from such confinement, LM will continue his housebound vigil. Someone clearly has a bounty on his head, and should a breakout occur, Lucky Man's life will surely be at stake.

But, should I digress, this post is called "Finding the Light." We all have that opportunity every day of our lives. It's called gratitude, it's called positive attitude, and some even call it spirituality. All of these names, I relate to creativity. To me creativity is problem solving. It's not what happens to you, its how you react to what happens to you. Artists know this innately. And they are forever taking what they are given, ultimately using their imagination which is of course "a given," and creating something with it. This positive energy flow is what draws me to art, and to the artists themselves. "Finding the Light," for me is everything. How do you "Find the Light?"--Ruth Mitchell

"Flower 8" - kEith kImmell

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