It’s hard to believe that it was one year ago when a work-out person asked me if I wanted a cute little dog? I still don’t know why she picked me–although she said, “she just knew I was the right person for Josie.” I had starting thinking about getting a dog after my daughter recently had gotten a cute little chihuahua. So when this gal mentioned Josie was part chihuahua, I knew it was a “sign.”
I had a lot of fears and reservations. I was used to doing my own thing. I was now working from home, I liked my independence and loved to travel. I never considered getting a dog–because they were such high maintenance. But this seemed right. It would be my first dog since I was a kid. It was a big decision and yet, it seemed so right.
It’s hard to anticipate all the changes I would have to make. Would I regret accepting the dog? Would I hate having to take her out in the middle of winter? How much money would I have to spend on her? There were lots of unanswered questions, it still felt oddly comfortable when I heard myself saying, “Sure” but just on trial for a week. Ha!
Well, as they say, the rest is history. And today we are celebrating our first anniversary together. Remarkably, I have had no regrets–despite my friends and family still in disbelief that I have a dog and how much it’s changed my life.
Sure Josie is more labor intensive, it is a labor of love. I could sit at my computer all day without a break, and Josie “begging” to go out gives me a welcomed breath of fresh air. She has been a reminder of what’s important in life–family and friends. She’s definitely family.
Okay, you may not be ready to get a dog, but I want to encourage you to take a chance on something that feels right. Sure, you may not know how your decision will ultimately turn out. But the recipe for a juicy life is learning to listen to your heart and taking a chance.
When I considered a move to Asheville, my mind quickly went to leaving the wonderful friends I would be leaving where I lived for the past 8 years. My heart sank; boy, I would sure miss them.
But then I realized if I hadn’t taken the chance to relocate with my company and move to Delaware, I wouldn’t have met them in the first place. I then found it fascinating to go back over my life and think about all the changes in my life that have lead me to find so many wonderful people. I stopped when I got to Madeline whom I’ve known since I was three.
At a recent relocation workshop I facilitated, several people confessed their biggest concern about moving was making new friends. One participant repeated a saying I remembered my mother telling me years ago, “It’s hard to make friends when you’re old.” I’ll admit I even said it myself–but now I realize it is a limiting belief.
I’ve been trying to figure out how this cultural belief evolved. My friend Marie is 81 and she continues to make friends. Alice, age 90 who recently moved here to be near her daughter, plays bridge every week with her new friends in the assisted living facility where she lives.
Friendships blossom with a common bond. Certainly work is a natural breeding ground for friendships since so much time is spent there. But other places could be church organizations, volunteering, life-long learning classes, etc. You need to be willing to take a chance and invite them to coffee, lunch or another activity.
As I write this, the girl scout song I learned in my childhood, “Make new friends, but keep the old; one is silver and the other gold” is playing in my head. How wonderful that along the way some of my silver friends have turned to gold. I celebrate and value my golden friends and look forward to getting to know my silver friends better.