Friday, April 22, 2011


Gifts come in various ways, shapes and forms.  On this Good Friday I was given a gift of just two words.  "Guardedly optimistic!" 

Gunny, a TADSAW (Train a Dog ~ Save a Warrior) service dog in training has been critically ill.  He was given a  diagnosis of probable distemper, with a longevity of two to three days at the most. Today is day four.  After a zillion phone calls back and forth to the veterinarian, today we received "Guardedly optimistic."  I will take it!

This dog is a fighter.  He has the finest medical care available.  His trainer and her husband's lives, as well as their personal family dogs, have been turned topsy turvy caring for Gunny, bleaching everything in sight, force feeding him, and watching him night and day for signs both good and bad.  He is not out of the woods yet.  But prayers and excellent care are working so far.

Sometimes you just have to believe!  Sometimes believing is all you can do  ~ believe and pray.  Gunny has had plenty of both on his behalf. 

I am the visionary.  I want the fairy tale ending.  I want the dog to break free from this horrific virus he has contracted from a previous life, a life lacking in love and care.  I want this dog to go to his warrior that is consumed by PTSD and each strengthen the other. I want the 'happily ever after.'

Whether we get the fairy tale ending remains to be seen.  But if wishing makes it so.......

Today Gunny ate without being force fed.  He sat on the back porch of his trainer's home and saw a squirrel jumping from tree to tree.  He got up and ran and chased it, almost catching it.  He picked up his tennis ball on a rope and took it to his trainer.  She tossed it a few yards, and he retrieved it, dropped it at her feet and repeated the process.  Then he sat down, seemed comfy and dozed lazily in the sunshine.  We celebrated this baby step.

He wants to live.  He has no way of knowing, but there is a young man out there waiting for him.  Needing him, just as Gunny needs him. A young man who also was a fighter in a war far away.  He paid the price and is struggling.  The similarities are striking.  Please God let them meet and  live to nourish each other and to teach all of us what returning to life is all about.

Today my Christmas Cactus is full of brilliant pink blossoms.  It is Good Friday.  I am taking this as a sign.  A sign that this dog will survive to snuggle close to a young man who has found that the war doesn't end when you come home ~ it just begins. 

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