Sometimes it’s so very hard to stay positive and optimistic.
We see struggles around us everyday, communication can be difficult when you don’t know where (or whether) there is any common ground.
Age and illness keep winning the battles that take our loved ones from us.
I try to consider how fortunate I have been to have had the people (and the animals!) in my life that have given me so much, taught me important lessons. And it helps remind me that I cannot do it all, I cannot save them all, but I can make a difference.
I can be the best mother it is in my power to be. I can be a loving and supportive daughter and sister. I can do my job in a way that gets past the frustrations of the day to day grind and focuses on the mission of my office, providing a valuable and possibly life-altering service.
I can enjoy the moment with my dogs, giving them care and support and structure and joy, and accept the joy they so willingly share with me.
And I can participate in efforts to make life better for people and for dogs. I have seen the ravages of illness in dogs and cats with whom I have had special bonds. I cannot change what they had to endure, but I can help seek answers so that dogs and people may have more hope for the future.
This is not, and never will be, a perfect world. But I can make an effort to make it better.
The community of people who own, breed, adore Bernese Mountain dogs have long supported health research for the breed, maintaining a health database (www.bernergarde.org) and supporting the AKC Canine Health Foundation in its work supporting ongoing health research.
This week, the 7th Willem Winjberg AKC CHF Cancer Fundraiser began. We are getting closer to unlocking the secrets of canine cancer – too late for those dogs memorialized in the Histio Roll Call, but perhaps not for the dogs resting at their owners’ sides today.
I will support these efforts, it is part of what I can do, even if I can’t do it all.
I can make a difference to people and dogs I may never even meet, perhaps even to those I hold most dear. How could I not support this work?
We may not defeat age, frustrations, or stupidity, but we can learn more about cancer and how to treat and defeat it. There is hope.