“Dies today at 3:30 pm!”, is what I saw. That and those terrified amber eyes.
Lately I’ve been making a strong effort to get up early, work out and use the ongoing adrenalin to write before the courage leaves me again, as it does so often. Another thing I’m practicing my discipline on is not going on social media before I have completed my work load.
Yesterday I couldn’t get out of bed. My body felt tired and achy and my eyes wouldn’t stay open long enough to let the sunlight be my helper. Everything felt whack. The schedule I set for myself was out the window and I couldn’t decide what not to do first. By the time I had a cup of coffee in my hand it was past 12:30 pm.
I opened Instagram, shaming myself about going online to indulge in distraction without having earned it. Scrolling through the pics of happy human beings, cute kittens and actor selfies I barely stopped to like; it was the usual mix of #tongueouttuesday, Trumplestiltskin rants and inspirational quotes.
Then Ace of Hearts Dog Rescue’s post came along and I got stuck. I tried to scroll by but I simply couldn’t. I was captured by the dog. His eyes reminded me of the amber stones I would look for at the beaches in northern Germany when I was a kid.
Lucky children would find one or two. Really lucky children would discover a stone with an insect inside that got entrapped thousands of years ago.
The caption of Bronx’s picture put me in a state of fight or flight. I know animals are put to sleep around the clock but every single cell in my body was refusing to let this happen. I contacted the rescue organization and said that I would go get him out but I didn’t hear back at first. The thought of the dog being stuck on death row in some shelter two hours away with only little time left, energized my body and I jumped up and hopped into the shower.
Ace of Hearts had negotiated more time for him to find a foster first. We had until noon today. Getting up early has never been so easy for me. I swirled out of bed, meditated, fed the cats. My body was in the car on the way to Apple Valley, my mind arrived long before me, at his side, letting him know that everything would be okay now. I so wanted to get there faster, sending neurological orders down my spine and hoping for my foot to obey by pressing down on the gas pedal just a little tighter.
My impatience only grew after I had signed the paperwork. I went to the bathroom and it was rewarded. It’s like when you wait for your food at the restaurant but then you go to the restroom to wash your hands. When you come back your food is on the table. Magic. The trick apparently works in shelters like a charm as well. When I walked back into the lobby I saw a black dog speed over the flooring towards the exit, in tow a poor girl that was dragged along and could barely hold on to him. The shelter staff pointed and him and said “There you go, he’s all yours.”
Outside Bronx pulled and peed, pulled and peed, leaving the girl, who was still charmingly trying to get his excitement under control, in a sweat. There was no doubt he wanted to get away but not without marking the shit out of that place. Then he jumped into my car and never turned around.
Driving back to L.A. though the massive San Bernardino mountains, some of which were still snow capped, and witnessing the little guy in my back seat finally settle down and relax, probably for the first time in months, I felt the power of being.
Then Bronx made his way into the front seat next to me. He looked at me and I felt full.
I might have never found an amber stone by the beach, let alone one with a little spider inside. I did however find those amber eyes. What a sweet twist on having been held hostage. Even if it was just for a few hours, the feeling of that experience will stay with me for a thousand years.
As much as I wish Bronx could live with me, I’m just happy and beyond thankful he gets to live at all.
Long live Bronx.