Time for another look into the inner workings of my mind. Scary thought, isn’t it? The brave among you will keep reading.
I got another lesson in self control over the weekend. Someone called and wanted me to take their parents’ dog into rescue because said parents had their house re-carpeted. My first thought was, you’re kidding, right? Sadly, no. The caller went on to explain that the dog was now living outside in a kennel but it had a dog house. Like the dog house was some great gift that made them caring, compassionate human beings. Never mind that the dog was now probably wondering why he was suddenly relegated to live his life outside, away from his pack. Winter was coming the caller informed me so they wanted to turn the dog into rescue before it got too cold. Did they want a gold star? It seemed so.
I’m proud to say that I did not let any of the comments racing through my mind come out of my mouth. Some of the kinder among them were: idiot, moron, are you serious? I bit my tongue and kept them to myself. Why? Because I’m a good person? No. Because I knew that if I alienated them, I would not get the dog who would then spend the winter cold and alone. So as is always the case for people who do dog rescue, it’s about the dog, not about me or anyone else. It’s about saving the dog. That’s why I continued to be pleasant and helpful.
Whenever something like this happens that my mind can’t come to peace with, I try to frame it by Gandhi’s Top 10 Fundamentals for Changing the World. If I can’t deal with it, I look to another source. Prayer sometimes helps me but I want to change the world so I put it into this formula.
- Change yourself. I’m trying to change myself, that’s why I didn’t blurt out my feelings.
- You are in control. I was in control for that moment. Yay, me!
- Forgive & let go. Well I don’t hate these people. That’s something.
- Without action you aren’t going anywhere. I referred the people on to our rescue intake coordinator to get this dog to us.
- Take care of this moment. See #2.
- Everyone is human. Maybe when these folks were younger they were better able to deal with having a pet. Maybe they have health problems that make a dog too much for them.
- Persist. Well, I will continue to rescue dogs. I don’t know if I really persisted in this instance.
- See the good in people and help them. Even though I don’t agree with the decision, I will try to help these people rehome their dog.
- Be congruent, be authentic, be your true self. Not sure if I did this by keeping my mouth shut. Helping the dog is what I do and who I am though.
- Continue to grow and evolve. I’m working on it.
Somehow I can’t help but feel I fell short with this interaction. I didn’t teach those involved anything. Maybe that is not my purpose. I will have to learn to be content with whatever comes of the situation. I will have to put more effort into learning how honor number 3 on the list. At the very least I got a notable story.