Adopting a third dog?

The other day I was jogging at a nearby greenway in Nashville. This particular stretch begins/ends near the Metro Animal Control office, so, as I’ve done before, I stopped in at the end of my run. I figured since I have time, why not drop by to say hi to the doggies.

I strolled to each fenced-in dwelling, chatting with the four-legged guests. It wasn’t too long ago I came across an energetic dog named Bailey. I sat with her for awhile, and they even let me play with her outside for a bit. She was a great dog, yet my heart didn’t feel a tug. I knew she’d be adopted soon so I had no inclination to adopt her. This time around, a whole different story!

In a stall next door to the one Bailey was in (she’d been adopted by now), was a boy dog named Pharaoh. I knew I was in trouble because my heart felt a strong tug! He had blue eyes, and a spotted pink nose. He was mostly white with a few big brown patches. They said he was an Australian Shepherd mix. I learned this when I chatted with the workers there as I was on my way out. I was also told that Pharaoh was available, darn it! And he might be deaf! Well, now I just wanted to be the hero that saved him! Couldn’t they have said he has a history of biting people’s faces? He walks upright and drinks beers? He loves to pee on carpet? Maybe he’s pro-choice or something? Anything that will deter me from wanting to adopt him!

Anyway, I left to finish my jog and head home, all the while feeling that tug on my heart. For the rest of the afternoon I went over in my mind what kind of changes another dog would bring. Two dogs is one thing, but it seems like three is a whole new ball game. I researched. Mostly the adjustment was financial, but also there was a 10 or 15 year commitment to grapple with. My two dogs (Piper and Asia) are 8 and 6, so adding Pharaoh as a 1-year-old would extend my guardianship quite a few years. I decided to pray about it the rest of the day, research, sleep on it, and then see how I felt in the morning. Along with what I was feeling, I also knew he’d be adopted pretty quick because he was a beautiful and seemingly well-behaved dog. In fact, before I had even met him, there were two other families who put a “hold” on him but after 24 hours, their claim had expired.

I went to bed thinking I’d go visit him the next day, no matter what my heart was feeling when I woke up.

The next day I made my way over to the shelter mid-afternoon. I said I was there to pet the dogs. I also asked about Pharaoh. You see, I was still curious but if I’m being honest, I knew this time– in my heart– it was not my task to make a home for him. Although he would be a great dog, I’m sure, I felt a peace that he was meant for someone else. Well, when I asked the woman, she said he’d been adopted… THE DAY BEFORE!

Yeah, the same day I met him! A few hours after I left, he was gone! It’s so funny to me that once I got home after meeting Pharaoh, not knowing he would be adopted that day I prayed and prayed, I thought and thought, I went to bed hoping for clarity, then awakened with an inkling of a feeling, but still praying and thinking. Meanwhile, Pharaoh had been with his new owners for half a day already.

My prayers had been answered before I even prayed them. Pretty amazing! When I was told he was adopted, I didn’t have a feeling of regret, no anxiety about missing out, I was just happy for Pharaoh. Hopefully he now has a great home to run and play and be loved in. And meanwhile, me and my little pack of three are very content as a triple-threat 🙂

-Out of the Wilderness

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And I’m running again…

Today I pounded the pavement for a couple of miles, my first time to run since this pretty epic fail last week. I felt some familiar aches but overall I’m happy with how it went. The weather is warm and muggy, but cloud cover kept the sun from blazing down on me. I also liked jogging over fallen fall leaves. I know I’ve got a log way to go to run my fastest 5K time, but I will get there. I must get there!

-Out of the Wilderness

Jogging in what’s left of Hurricane Irma

I was about to title this The Art of Running in the Rain but I didn’t, for a couple of reasons:

  1. It’s too close to the title of a great book called The Art of Racing in the Rain*
  2. It’s not so much artistic as it is just keeping your head down and finishing

Yesterday, as Hurricane Irma continued to dwindle down to a misty precipitation, I set out to run. The original plan was to drive over to a nearby Greenway but it was 4pm. So while getting there would be a cinch, afternoon traffic in Nashville is anything but. I’d get stuck in Google traffics dreaded red line with all the other people heading home for the day. I kept the car in park and went on foot around the neighborhood.

As I mentioned a few days ago, my goal is to beat my best 5K time. This run, however, I wasn’t going for gold. Just a jog pace. I needed to be in the rain. Let my mind and spirit be refreshed. I used this time to turn a few things over to the Lord. Any frustrations, nerves, fears, I prayed for God to replace them with joy.

Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.
1 Peter 5:7

img_20170914_111415.jpgGod wants me to give Him my anxiety, my worries and fears, which is totally awesome because I don’t really want them anyway! As I was running I confessed how I was feeling. I asked God to take on the burden and with the new space in my life, for joy and freedom. Freedom in my heart that will spill over into my daily life, which brings joy.

By the end of the run I definitely felt refreshed. It was good for my soul to be in that vulnerable place of admitting my feelings to the One who already knew them anyway. The frustration and anxiety were gone. All that was left was a happy albeit fast-beating heart…and wet clothes.

I didn’t break any records. No gold medals. I didn’t even run very fast. And yet yesterday did more for me than any 5K will ever do. As my pastor would say, I had a front row seat to see God work. A chance to take God up on one of His promises and know that He didn’t leave me hanging. I’d say that’s worth more than gold!

-Out of the Wilderness

*As an Amazon Affiliate, I will receive a portion of sales associated with this Amazon link

Not being lost, discovering an abandoned golf course, and bonding with my dogs

Rain, rain, go away. This week in Nashville has been a tough one where the weather is concerned. Most city league sports were cancelled every day, standing water all over the place, and we haven’t seen the sun in 40 days! OK, it’s not the flood, but it’s been rainy and dreary for days. Today, though, the rain held off long enough for the dogs and me to go on an adventure to a greenway we haven’t been to yet.

Like a bridge over troubled water.

The hour-and-a-half walk started off superbly. It was very scenic, including a bridge, flowers, a little stream, and more. 13 4 27 30 3111Not all who wander are lost. That’s mostly true for us. We were wandering, we weren’t exactly lost, but I was starting to think we were Lost, if you know what I mean. There weren’t smoke monsters, polar bears, or Evangeline Lilly (darn it!), but I stumbled upon an abandoned golf course and country club. 12 13 14 15 16 19 20 22 It was quite eerie being out there in the great wide open. Grass unkempt and wild. Animal carcasses along the paths. Nothing neat or tidy like typical country clubs that take pride in their visual appeal. The further we walked, the more alone I felt. It was like a scene out of every horror movie, including a guy I kept seeing, who was clearly an axe murderer. See if you notice him in the pic below. 21 If he runs, we run.

That is to say, the second this guy starts running towards us, we take off. I kept whispering it to psych myself up. I know I’d be the slowest out of the 3, dang it! Again, I wish I had 4 legs. But no, I’m sure this person was was a nice fellow just out for a stroll, but then again, so was Jin. Except yeah, he was a contract killer.

Good… good… good… good di-rect-ions!

All in all, I think we missed a turn somewhere to stumble onto this deserted golf course, which made our adventure pretty exciting. Check out the gallery for more pictures. And Evangeline, if you’re reading this feel free to comment with your digits!

-Out of the Wilderness

You can take the dog out of the wild, but…

We were walking, we were wagging our tails, everything was fine then BAM! I’m bleeding with poop in my hand.

How did we get there so fast, you ask? Well, it happens when you have dogs. I took Piper and Asia to a nearby greenway, one of my favorites because it runs along Mill Creek in south Nashville. About a half-mile in we left the pavement to go down to the creek. They were panting so this was a great opportunity for them to cool their little paws in the rocky rush of cool water. Totally would’ve been awesome had they not discovered something in the brush near the creek that day. I didn’t know what that something was but I could see they were both chewing it. I made haste to remove it from both their mouths, having to do a finger sweep on Piper before she ingested the substance. I usually can scare Asia enough to command obedience, but not Piper. When she’s in the wild, she’s a wolf in beagle clothing… a scavenger in every sense of the word. I say that to help paint a picture of me trying to remove what she was eating, and her actively resisting that idea altogether. She was consuming as much as my fingers would let slip by and in her haste, she bit down on my fingers, drawing blood. So now I’m faced with a cut finger that I’m about to rinse in an unsanitary creek. But that’s not even the worst part.

The worst part is I don’t think it was animal poop.

The moral of this story is cats still suck.

-Out of the Wilderness