My life changed dramatically and forever when I lost TJ.

I welcome you to follow along as I adjust to my "new normal".

It is not all puppies and ice cream but it is my life....real and honest.

Thursday, January 19, 2012


I have always loved animals. My Mom used to frequently dream that I brought home a stray elephant I had found. Throughout the years I have adopted numerous stray dogs and even a few barn cats.  For me, animals bring so much joy into my life that I can't imagine being without them.

They can sense so many of our emotions and give us unconditional love. I believe one can find so much symbolism in the way they behave and often times parallels between their life and ours can be drawn. I want to share with you one such true story.

Quite a few years back an injured dove showed up at our house. I don't know if he had been shot or hit by a car, but his breast was completely sliced open.  I first noticed him while I was throwing scratch (cracked corn) on the ground for my chickens. He was trying desperately to steal some but the chickens kept chasing him away and it was obvious that he could not fly. I threw him some scratch off to the side so he could eat.  For the first week he ate alone, away from the chickens and away from me.  Every morning he would appear for his share of some scratch and it wasn't long before my chickens began to accept him and he blended right in.  Over time his breast began to heal and he could fly a little bit at a time; not very long and not very high but to me it was fantastic improvement. During his healing he learned that I was not a threat and he had no fear of me.  When eventually he could fly good as new he never left our place.  He would always be waiting for me when I went out to feed in the morning and often when I would leave for work he would ride the bed rails of my truck until I pulled out of the driveway. He would then fly up to rest on the power lines. Often he would be waiting on those same lines when I got home. As I pulled into the driveway he would swoop down and ride the truck to it's parking place. In the evenings, as TJ and I sat on the patio discussing our day and planning the next he would happily perch nearby. He eventually found a mate and they built their nest on our patio right outside the back door. While TJ wasn't happy with the mess they were creating, I convinced him to please let them be. They raised not just one but two families right on our patio.

When I moved from that house after TJ died there was no way for me to bring him with me so I was forced to leave him behind and it broke my heart. I can still vividly remember the last time I pulled out of that driveway and he was on the bed rails of my truck. When he flew off just as I pulled into the street I stuck my hand out the window and waved goodbye.

I was leaving my old life behind to begin my own healing process.  I was beginning my own journey to learn how to spread my wings and fly again. Small short flights at first, as the pain held me back. But with time and nourishment much longer and higher flights. I am not yet soaring above the power lines, but I will.


  1. This was a beautiful post and such a tender story. Amazing how you are able to relate the story to your own experience. Soon you will be soaring too.

  2. beautifully written. poignant and filled with hope.

  3. This is such a poignant story! I love that the dove came to trust you so much and blended in as part of the family.

    I feel the same way about animals :-)

  4. That's an awesome story Sandy. I'm sure you miss having to leave behind that home and that Dove. I hope you found some new friends like the Dove at your new place. Thanks for sharing.

  5. What a neat story Sandy - thanks for sharing it. I hope you can find those connections in your new home too!

  6. Moving. Heartbreaking.

    So many beautiful layers.

    thank you. Xxx Thinking of you.

  7. What a poignant story of love. It always makes me sad that we can't explain what's going on to our animal friends. I had to tell myself that the dove was OK because you helped him heal so that he could survive on his own.

  8. Just beautiful, Sandy. And so moving. Love it when you share! Hugs, my friend!


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