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What I learned this week: be like a dog

Sara Lingafelter
Sara Lingafelter
2 min read

This is a cop-out of a post, since I overslept my writing alarm clock and it’s a work at home day that I have to be in the office, so I have approximately eleven minutes.  Go.

Maile the Great, my roommate’s best-dog-in-the-world, has been staying with me and my man at his house the last couple of days while Teresa is out of town for work.  She loves his house — he’s got a big, play-friendly backyard, and she loves to run circles in it.  There’s a cat next door who sometimes pops over the fence to be chased.  She’s allowed on the bed in the house (although NOT the sofa, which she’s perplexed about, even though the rules are the same at home).  When she and I stay at home alone when Teresa’s gone, she sleeps all day and mopes ceaselessly.  When she and I stay at the man’s she’s a picture of balance and happiness.

When we get up in the morning, she’s not quick to join us.  She lounges in bed, until she feels ready to start her day.  At that point, she slips into the spare room — it’s the room where he makes music, where our ski gear resides in between trips, and where I meditate every night (when I haven’t fallen off the wagon, like I did last week) — and does her morning Doga practice.  We don’t notice her headed in there; we just notice that the house is quiet and she’s no longer on the bed, and if I investigate I’ll find her in that sunrise-warmed room, facing the direction that feels right to her for that day — sometimes East, sometimes West.  I imagine her in a little doggy meditation, or perhaps dreaming dog daydreams of snow or squirrels.

Maile loves with her whole little body, and she’s very good at getting what she wants most even without being able to communicate in English.  Like on Saturday, her (and my) little day was made when the man saw a sunbeam in the living room that could only be improved by the presence of a little dog in it.  He moved a table so that her bed could go in that sunbeam, and on that bed she laid for as long as they sun shone.  It was a reminder that sometimes love leads others to look out for us, too — if we’re really, really lucky.  It was a reminder of the simple pleasure of a sunbeam shining in through a late winter window.  It was a reminder that it’s a good thing to stop and sit for awhile, when you find somewhere very happy and comfortable.  And it was a reminder to seek out company carefully, and to surround myself with people who look for sunbeams that they can move tables to make room for me in, once in awhile.

There will be no post this Thursday since I’ll be six miles off the grid in a ski hut with no cell service and no WiFi (praise all that’s good and holy in this world).  Have a lovely week, and try to take Maile’s advice… take some time to meditate each morning, and look for sunbeams with your name on them and good-hearted souls to help you make your way into them.


Sara Lingafelter

Sara (Grace) Lingafelter takes steps forward and backward toward a right-sized life on a daily basis.