Today I'm aching all over, especially in my neck, shoulder, and chest. It's my own fault, really. I also am experiencing another ache--this one is spiritual.
But I am getting ahead of myself.
The saga starts a few years ago, when I started watching Cesar Millan, The Dog Whisperer, "rehabilitate people and train dogs." Cesar Millan makes it look so easy. He maintains that dogs follow calm and assertive energy, ergo, owners need to be calm and assertive. Learning to walk the dog is vital, he says. Dogs needs three things: exercise, discipline, and affection.
I can follow that regimen, or so I thought. My husband, who had owned dogs before, was dubious. But I persisted in my prideful opinion of my abilities.
Making a long story short, my husband and I decided to give my son an early Christmas present. Last weekend, we adopted a cute 13-month-old chocolate lab-mix who has lived most of her life at a dog rescue ranch. Yesterday, Cameron renamed her Theia.
Since my son is working nights, I've decided to take her for morning and evening walks for exercise. Like Cesar instructed, I've waited at the door for her to calm down. I'm outside first, and we're pretty good going down the front steps side-by-side. However, the moment we hit the sidewalk, Theia tries to gallop--not run, gallop--taking me with her. Calmly, I rein her in and sit her down and check my breathing, re-adjusting her collar, and make sure I'm holding the leash correctly. But as soon as I take a step, it starts all over again.
As for my idea of a quiet time with God while walking Theia, well, it hasn't been so quiet. Twice I've gone out with a cup of coffee in one hand, her leash in the other, and a prayer on my lips. Both times I've spilled the coffee, and my "praise God" has quickly turned into "Stop! Dog!"
In the few days since we've gotten her, I've had other disasters. Monday, thinking I was in control, I took her to meet my auntie, who lives in an assisted living apartment. After our quick visit, I had to inform Auntie's care-givers that she might have a bruise or two on her arm from Theia's exuberant greeting.
This morning, my pride is in shambles and my body is aching. Despite it, I'm certain that God will use this beautiful animal to help me in my spiritual growth. As the writer of Proverbs says, pride goeth before a fall. Ouch!
Today, high on my Christmas wish list is dog training lessons.