The first Christmas that I remember is when I got best gift I have ever gotten. Ever since that one fateful night, my life has changed forever. I had my first best friend. A sweet little terripoo (terrier-poodle cross) puppy came out of a big paper-wrapped box underneath our Christmas tree. We named him Tramp after the 1955 animated Disney hit movie, "Lady and the Tramp". I watched that movie alot at that age.
During my childhood, he was my partner-in-crime, protector, and pillar of strength. Everyday, we had a new adventure to explore together. It could be something big like going camping in the vast mountainous forests of British Columbia or small like the small plot of our front yard. Everything with him was an experience. It always made me smile and it still does to this day.
That little dog as taught me alot while I was growing up. Responsibility, kindness, but the most important lesson he taught me was how to love. Nothing weird but love in general. Love is always there when you need it the most. It holds you close when you are hurting, It keeps the monsters in the closet from coming to get you, and it is always there for you even when you aren't at your best. When life is cruelest to you, you've got that light there waiting for you, promising that everything is going to be okay.
Life is full of ups and downs, feeling whole and getting your heart broken, but true love is everlasting. Sometimes it isn't with a spouse. Sometimes it is a friend. Sometimes it is your child. And sometimes it is a pet. People always wish for love in some form or other but I was lucky. My love isn't a person but the animals who shaped me into the woman I am today.
My two guinea pigs just passed away today. They were the latest pets I had. I wasn't planning on getting new pets when I met them. But they were in a bad place. They were on craigslist. My cat had just died. I was devastated and lonely with her being gone when she has been in my life for thirteen years. She was a big milestone in my life. The time when I was on my own. But the point is, I fell in love with them at first sight. They were mal-nourished and in the most filthy cage that I have ever seen. I had put in an offer for them and promised that I would give them a better life. I think I succeeded.
I talk about my latest pets but it was my first pet that taught me, how important it is to focus on the needs of those who love and need you the most. They ask for nothing in return but your time and attention. We have to ask ourselves if those two things are really so much to give. You may have a broken heart when you lose those you love but ask yourself this. What would your life be like if you didn't have them?
I can't answer that and if you can't; you must be doing something right. I can't tell you how much I am grateful to know that there are beings out there that loved me as much as that dog did when I was growing up. I found others to love me along the way but in the end it is the tramp that teaches a lady to love.
I hope to all those out there who are looking for love, look no further than your beloved pets. The sign of love is right in front of you. Never take that for granted.
About the author
Erika Ravnsborg is a writer/blogger/adventurer/explorer living in Canada. Her goal is to travel all over the world and write amazing stories about it. Find more of her adventures at https://www.magicalstoriestoshare.com/