Hello and welcome back to the wonderful world of the Dogpound. I was reading the Sunday paper, and I came across an interesting headline...

Hello and welcome back to the wonderful world of the Dogpound.

I was reading the Sunday paper, and I came across an interesting headline that tweaked my interest. The title read: “My daughter told me to stop being a hermit crab.” In short, the story was about a 40-something single mom who had just gotten out of a bad two-year relationship, her first after her divorce, and she was about as low on the “loser” totem pole she could be. Her 11-year-old daughter had finally had enough and sympathetically told her mother that she had to stop living her life as a hermit crab: too much time in her shell and not enough time out in the sunshine. Her daughter characterized herself as a dolphin: curious, playful and exulting in the moment, and she urged her mother to find the dolphin that she knew was hidden inside her mother. The story had a happy ending when the mother finally found her inner spirit animal, shed her shell [hermit crabs molt their exoskeletons about every 18 months so they can grow], and she entered into the sunshine looking upward at the sun vs. looking down at her shadow.

I can relate to the narrative of this story. I have been down at times and felt like I was in that hamster cage “wheel of life,” where all I did was eat, sleep, work and repeat. Now, I do more than that, of course: get gas, go grocery shopping, clean the house, do yardwork, etc., but all of that is just a slightly different version of the same hamster wheel. Around and around you go, and you wind up back in the same place doing the same things. Sometimes we choose that environment because it provides a sense of protection from the world and because we are comfortable. We know what to expect and how it will impact us. It provides that warm blanket cozy feeling, even though we may not realize that is what it is actually doing for us. Our exoskeleton, so to speak, protects us from change and sometimes from the sunshine, so rather than cast it off, we hang on to it, build it up and reinforce it. We feel safe and protected within the womb of our making. I am not saying we cannot be content and happy in that safe place, but like a hermit crab, we were built to grow, and to do so we must, at times, shed our familiar shell and allow a new one to grow in its place. To do that one must seek out the sunshine, and be not afraid of your new shell. I for one, when asked what animal I would like to be, have said I wanted to be a dolphin. Why? They are super intelligent and playful, plus in some cases difficult to handle. Note: the killer whale is related to the dolphin. Get my drift? LOL

“I am in favor of animal rights as well as human rights. That is the way of a whole human being.” ― Abraham Lincoln


*Wherever you go, there you are. Your luggage is a different story.

*A baseball manager walked out to the mound and said to the rookie pitcher, “Son, I think you have had enough.” “But I struck this guy out the last time he came up,” the pitcher protested. “I know, but we are still in the same inning,” the coach replied.

*I always give 110 percent to my job: 40 percent Monday, 30 percent Tuesday, 20 percent Wednesday, 15 percent Thursday and 5 percent Friday.

*I have two worries. One is that we may never go back to the “good old days.” The other is that these might be them.

That is enough for this evening. As always, be good, do good, play safe, and remember to always be kind to your pets. – JR