Today is the fifth birthday of my sweet Zen dog Baxter. I am amazed at how quickly time has passed and how rich my life is since he adopted me just five years ago. It is truly amazing the energy and spirit he brings to my life and what he continues to teach me and remind me about what it means to be fully human as well as what it means to be a citizen of this planet.
Five years ago I found myself dog less as both of my previous beautiful dogs passed. I had Basil for 15 years who passed from old age and Anise who passed due to a liver disease. Both of them were a tremendous joy and brought such light and love to my life as I crossed the country dancing and making work. They were two of the best well traveled dogs one could ever meet.
Once they both passed, I promised myself I would let time heal my loss and be sure not to replace them or the memory of them with just any dog. Since I knew I would know when the time was right, I simply waited for the right dog to find me, and find me he did.
I spent about a year and a half open to seeing dogs, going to rescue places and just waiting until I knew. One August day I happened to walk by a rescue site that sets up outside of Pet smart. I began walking slowly looking in the crates. I make sure to make eye contact to see the light in the eyes of the dogs and to feel is there is a connection. When my attention was drawn to a crate a little up the way, I looked in and two giant green eyes surrounded by chocolate bliss were staring back at me. It was then I knew he was meant to be with me.
When the volunteer took him out and put him in my arms I could feel it in my bones. His coat was ratty due to having just been getting through carcoptic mange, but his energy and spirit would have made you believe he never had a rough day in his life. So full of light and spirit was he that all that mattered was to simply be held in the arms of me.
We spent some time together walking and just being. I knew that quiet time was an indication of many things. His personality, his energy and maybe even a relation to the spirit of Basil was very much the same way. There was something about Baxter that had much of Basil in him. It made me wonder if perhaps Basil had come back to spend some more time with me. If he did, he certainly made his way back well through the cosmic soup.
Whatever it was, we found one another that day and for this I celebrate and honor him on this glorious day of him. Happy Birthday, Baxter! May I give to you even half of what you share with me.