Science offers us a lot of information on understanding the inner workings of your pets minds. They are food motivated or they are toy motivated. Modern cognitive psychology tells us that our companion pets don’t do anything just because. As a pet parent I have anecdotal evidence that says sometimes that is bullwhackey. Maybe there is some deep scientific reason my pack gathers around me and comforts me and takes care of me when I’m down but my evidence is that they have a deep unconditional love for me and know their job is to love and protect me.
Last night when I got home from a very stressful day — many petsitting/dogwalking jobs while trying to simultaneous juggle my full time IT Consultant job. Yesterday my car became my home office. Thank goodness it was a lovely day out as I sat on front porches watching the dogs play and talking on conference calls or had my headset on as I hiked with one of my wards or sat in the parking lot of shopping center to do my emails and work on my deliverables in between visits. And then I got the call.
I’m currently working on a project that was supposed to be long-term, at least another couple of years to deploy in the US and with my husband freshly laid off from a failing start up company, this gig was perfect because I made enough money to sustain the family without Andy working so he could find the perfect job. Plus the work was flexible enough that I could start Kritter Keepers and work my appointments in between meetings. I have my own Mi-Fi so I literally can work out of my car — as long as I have access to the internet and telephone, I am golden. And for those “All Day Deluxe” gigs I have, I get to spend time with the companion animals while still doing my job. There have been many a conference call with a kitty purring away on my lap or a heavy-headed pup resting on my thigh while I conducted business.
The call yesterday gave me two weeks but as a consultant/contractor. The bottom line is after October 31 I don’t have a full-time, well-paying job to support the family. And my girls sensed immediately my depression when I came home yesterday afternoon. Now, they are always excited when I get home because I am the center of their universe. “The Daddy” as we refer to Andy is nice to have around and if “The Mommy” isn’t around then he will feed them and they always like that! But The Mommy is the whole in their doggie doughnuts. I rock their world and they rock mine! If they had apposable thumbs they would bring me chicken soup when i am sick but instead they rally the troops.
Last night was no different. Each dog wanted to comfort me — sometimes all together and sometimes one-at-a-time. But they were all gentle and loving and knew something was wrong. The don’t force me to “talk about it” (boy do I hate talking about it!) and they don’t ask me for answers to questions I have no idea about. They just let me go through my process of reconciling with the bad news or illness or whatever is going on in life.
The pictures I’ve included are not the most flattering of me but they are the reality of the bad times I was going through. And for their support of me during the bad, I pledge to support them during their bad. I pledge to hold them as they cross over Rainbow Bridge. I pledge to comfort them and make them feel better when they are sick and hurt. I pledge to always keep them as a part of my family.
My girls are not my surrogate children but they are my companions, my loves, my family.