Tuesday, January 14, 2014


I love to inhale her. I always have.

Gracie's fur is a comfort and fragrance I had when I was a toddler, carrying my 'blankie' around with me everywhere I went, until it was no more than 4 inches long. I buried my face into my 'blankie' and its fragrance brought me peace.

My little blind Petite Basset Griffon Vendeen, (PBGV) is gentle, kind, fun and funny.  She is also angelic.  This I truly believe.  For it is with her that I find peace and love and a kindness lacking in most people.  She quite simply stole my heart at 7 weeks of age.  She was to be euthanized because she had severe and irreparable vision. She couldn't be sold or bred! So not surprising the answer was to euthanize this little puppy the next morning.

No, quite simply 'no'...this was not acceptable. Would you dispose of your children in such a flippant manner, totally lacking any regard for life?

She has been mine ever since. And I have been hers.  She is now bordering on eleven years with me and that is not nearly long enough. The lessons she teaches me daily are nothing short of miraculous.

The most recent lesson learned was a couple of days before Christmas when a dear friend came to my house with her son, a special needs little boy, but more importantly a very special little boy! I met them in my garage on my way to walk little Gracie around the neighborhood for a few minutes.  In only one instant the child fell hopelessly in love with this little blind dog as I explained her condition to him.  It was a moment I shall never forget nor ever want to.
He sat down next to her and with all the love and gentleness possible, he stroked her head and back and spoke to her so quietly I could not hear the words. His tenderness and instant love was overwhelming.  She turned over onto her back and begged and cooed to have her little pink tummy scratched.  He obliged willingly.  I explained to him that Gracie could not see him, but it was obvious she loved him and saw him with her heart.  I thanked him for being so gentle with her and explained how Gracie made sick people feel much better when she visited them in hospitals.  He said, "She makes me feel better." 

He kept looking into her eyes and whispering to her words I will never know.  Then he turned to his mother and me and said "Gracie has snowflakes in her eyes.  Aren't they beautiful?"

It was all I could do to swallow the tears, as I said "Yes they are so beautiful."  I just stared into his mom's eyes and we understood.  We understood this thing called nonjudgmental love.  He could not have loved her more had she been perfect.  He loved her because she wasn't perfect, and he found a great beauty in her lack of perfection.  He found snowflakes ~ snowflakes in her eyes.

I remembered a quote by a little seven year old girl when asked what love was.  She quite simply said, "When you love somebody, your eyelashes go up an down and little stars come out of you."
What an image.  If only grown ups could be this innocent, compassionate and loving.

We could all learn a great lesson from children, if we would only stop and listen. Perhaps you too might find snowflakes in the most unusual places.

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