Many of the comments were along a line I’ve heard a million times before when people learn about our participation in animal rescue. They all go something like this: You guys are angels! You have an amazing heart! I could never do what you do! I wish there were more people like you!
I appreciate it, I do.
But here’s the thing. I am nothing special.
I’m not putting myself down by saying that. I wish people could see that what we have is nothing more or different than anyone else.
Our heart’s aren’t bigger. When we started participating rescue and especially when we took on the rehabilitation of Keely, we had no more resources or knowledge than the next person.
We make the mistakes and lose our temper and patience. We learn the hard way. There is nothing glamorous about us.
But still I hear so often, I could never do what you do.
You know what I think people are really saying? I think what they are actually saying is that whatever it is looks hard. I think they are saying I’m afraid I’ll fail/get too attached/get hurt/be sad.
The answer to that is YES. YOU WILL.
But here is what I’ve learned. We’ve been fed a lie-the lie that tells us that comfort and pleasure are the aims in life. That if we live a life of ease, with the latest vacations and gadgets, we win. Now, I’m no expert but I don’t think that’s what we really want-what our soul really wants.
What we really want, what we keep searching for in the latest stuff, is MEANING.
And you can’t have meaning without a little discomfort, a little sadness, a few hard lessons.
It’s worth it, you guys. It is SOOOO worth it. I cried so many tears during Keely’s rehabilitation. Jason and I got mad at each other. We often felt like failures. But seeing our little girl through that process and coming out the other side-it still counts of one of the things I am proudest of in my life.
I helped save a life. That is an amazing and humbling thing to know about one’s self.
So what am I trying to say?
I am trying to say that you can too. Maybe animal rescue is not your thing. But if I could share anything and have people listen it’s stop assuming that you can’t do something just because you don’t know how to do it NOW. You don’t have to have all the answers to make a difference. YOU DON’T.
The next time you say to yourself, I could never do that, do me a favor and stop for a second. In saying that, is there part of you that’s really saying I’d LIKE to do that?
I bet you that’s what it really is. And I think when you realize and ACKNOWLEDGE that part of you isn’t afraid, that part of you WANTS to take this thing on (whatever the thing is), it becomes a lot easier to move towards.
That’s my experience anyway. And I’m nothing special.