Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Older Dog Wisdom #6 - Optimism

We had a major snow storm move across our area on its way to the East coast. We got about four inches of snow, not a big deal in comparison to the eighteen inches others got, but for a city that doesn’t usually get a lot of snow at one time, it was a big deal.

Tux, my ten-year-old dog, has become the family optimist. Having grown up in Vermont, a little of the white stuff on the ground doesn’t concern him. However, he hasn’t quite figured out that if the white stuff is in his back yard and it is freezing cold there, it’s probably that way in the front yard as well.

He is convinced that just because it’s too cold for a walk out back, it must be warm enough, i.e., above freezing, in the front. He insists that a walk in the neighborhood park won’t result in frostbitten noses on his human friends. He is deeply disappointed when he’s not invited to join us in the car.

As each day dawns, Tux’s optimism is renewed. He’s sure that today is the day that his humans will get off the couch and take him out for a long walk. He is doomed to disappointment, but that doesn’t stop him from knowing that things will change overnight for him.

There is much to be learned from Tux here.

Lesson One - Remain Positive

Remain positive in the face of physical evidence that says that there’s nothing to be optimistic about. The sidewalks are still treacherous, the temperatures remain in the low 20s, and there is no way a walk is in the works.

Lesson Two - Hope Springs Eternal

Hope remains eternal. Putting a positive face on adversity allows one to hope that the adversity will depart. The sidewalks will be ice free, the temperatures will get above 32, and a walk is possible.

Lesson Three - Spring is Eternal

Spring is eternal. Temperatures will rise, sidewalks will become safe again, and walks will return to be an everyday occurrence instead of an occasional event.

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