Thursday, August 15, 2013

A Lesson from Marty

Marty and I have been together for 12 years. He was two-years on when I got him. We started our journey together when I lived in Maryland. We drove cross-country and lived in California for two years. We packed up again and headed back East. We've been in Charlotte for seven years now.

Marty still does the happy dance when I come home and he struts around the block for our evening walk without a problem. Yet, he's no spring puppy. Nothing illustrates this more than his run-ins with the chihuahua puppy next door, Beyonce (yes, my neighbor's named their dog Beyonce).

Beyonce is never on a leash, so when she sees us out for our walk, she darts past Marty, barking (actually yipping). Marty offers a little bark but not and starts to give chase yet he never quite follows though. What can I say, my dog knows his limits.

I wish I could say the same. I think a lot of the time we either ignore our limits totally or we use them as an excuse for not doing anything.

My cousin, at age 40, tore his Achilles tendon. He thought he could just run out onto the basketball court without stretching. He was wrong. After a long healing process, he still hadn't learned his lesson. This time he tore his other Achilles.

On the other hand, I remember back in college when I could take back-to-back aerobics classes and then work out! I work out pretty regularly now but not at that length or intensity. It took me a while to get started again because I was so hung up on what I used to be able to do. Since I couldn't do that, I opted to do nothing. My limitations didn't just limit me; they stopped me.

Eventually I realized that I too wasn't a spring puppy. However, this old (well older) dog still had some fight left in her! I might not be able to do what I used to do but I could do something!

Age, and life in general, brings changes but change is rarely an ending, it just means a different way of doing things. A lesson that Marty has learned well.

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