I just watched this video. It came to me as a forward in my email to which, once viewed, I promptly forwarded on. The message is amazingly inspirational. The story is heart-breaking and heart-warming all at the same time… and yes… I was bawling my eyes out.
I was keeping it together fairly good until they explained the X-ray and then…
I lost it.
I was watching the rest of the video through blurry tear-filled eyes. When the turn-around began and I found my smile, I found a chuckle, then a deep-bellied laugh. I realized I was still crying. And yet, I was smiling.
It was a feel good moment.
But even after the video was over and I closed the window and pressed send on my email and got up for more coffee, I found my eyes whelping up with tears again thinking back to that moment my heart literally broke for this poor little dog. And it started me wondering… what is it about this dog I will never meet, that made me so incredibly sad and so completely connected to it, that I still can’t get her out of my head?
Was it the fact that she looked like a dog I once had? Was it because I love dogs so much that I was immediately endeared towards her? No.
She was abandoned, starved, a broken back and couldn’t move, stranded on a highway road side. How did she get that way? Was she thrown out of a car by someone who didn’t care? Was her back broken at that moment or did they do it to her before? I could have been furious at the faceless person who could have done this to her… but I wasn’t crying for that.
Was it the wonderful generous acts that woman did in stopping her car that morning? A highway road side of cars speeding by with windows closed, radios turned up, cell phones turned on. It truly was a wonderful act but I wasn’t crying about that.
Was it the pain that poor dog was in? A broken back, starving… it should have been, it was as close to a valid reason as any of the others… but again, it wasn’t why I was still crying for this dog.
It was because she couldn’t ask for help.
It was because she couldn’t tell anyone how much pain she was in.
It was because even if they would have seen her… they probably would have kept driving.
It was because if she would have been heard crying, howling… they would have told her to shut-up because they couldn’t understand WHY she was crying.
It’s because we can not be told by the animals in our lives what is going on with them, in their own words. We don’t know if they are hurting or in pain… we may be able to see it with our own pets when we finally come home from work, and finish our chores, and actually pay attention to them after TV. But they can’t walk up to us and say, “Hey Joe, I pulled a muscle in my hind leg, can you get me a warm compress for it?”
They are always so happy to see us, so happy to be in our presence that they wag their tails and look up to us with adoring eyes and desire so much to just be with us, that they will ignore any ailments they have just to be near us. We say to them “How you doin’ buddy?” and they wag their tail, they don’t say anything. Maybe, if we are attuned to them, we’ll notice their ears down when they think we aren’t looking, but with our busy lives we may miss it.
Yet that wasn’t even why I was crying… The above about our own pets doesn’t count because we have a vested interest in their health and safety, they are our family… I was crying because Daisy belonged to no one. She was alone. She was hurt and alone in a world too busy for her, surrounded by people who couldn’t hear her or see her or understand if she even did cry out.
It was a miracle that woman found her and noticed and cared enough to find the help and raise the money and take Daisy in. And we all say awe and smile at the saved soul of a dog… but how many of those heart-warming stories exist for other humans? Not children, I’ll give them a pass. I’m talking about older adults, people the rest of the world expects to be able to take care of themselves. People whom, if in need of help, can ask in their native tongue… but how many do?
We see them on the street with cardboard signs, yet we think to ourselves, why can’t they get up and work. We hear about them on the news and think, that’s sad, but it’s on the news, others will help. We hear about it in our community but assume those that hear will do something so we don’t need to. We think about it for a minute, an hour, but hardly a day and never a week – and a month later we’ve completely forgotten, even though their story may still very much continue on.
We live in a society that ignores the cries of the needy, in the same way we don’t understand the pleas of the injured animal. Our needy may speak to us in our native language, may articulate themselves like the best scholar and yet we still don’t hear them – because if we truly heard, we would have helped.
I’ll tell you this much. When I see a true – human interest story on the news (which is rare) it helps me realize as human beings we are capable of more than war and hate and crime. We are inundated by stories of evil-doers, adulterers, murderers, thieves and worse… and they are out there… but we all, as a civilization, need to hear more stories of the above and it would help us, as a society, hear them about our own kind too. We need to get used to seeing, hearing and doing good for others. It needs to become second nature again.
The hustle and bustle of the big city, everyone out for themselves… I don’t know when it happened, but it needs to change. We need to focus on our neighbors more… on the people who pour our coffee… on the waitresses that bring our food… on the secretary that collates our copies… on the people who drive the buses… on the guy who mows our yards… on the person behind the register… on the mother on the side of the road… on the homeless man holding the sign… on the person pushing the cart… on the tattered coat, on the tattered soul, in the scary part of town, being forgotten, not being heard, crying, cowering, in pain, with a broken heart, in a world that has forgotten him.