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Saturday, December 12, 2015

"We are going together, White Dog"

A video posted by Katherine Dunn / Apifera Farm (@katherinedunnapiferafarm) on


Every morning I spend time with the animals, but of late I have been taking more time with them, because I need them more than ever. I am very agitated with the process of selling the place-it is what it is-I have sold seven houses on my own and know how it goes in ups and downs. It is uncomfortable to have strangers walking through your house. The limbo stage of not having sold so we can't pick our new home is unsettling, but as my mother always said in all the times they sold houses,

"It only takes one right buyer."

Oh I miss her through this process, but I hear her voice daily as we go jump through the hoops to sell.

So in the mornings, I have a healing sessions with Benedetto. The White Dog is special, we all seem to know that. He was born a healer, no doubt in my mind. Some animals, like people, are more inclined to be healers-such as our dear departed friend, Stevie, or the little donkey, Pino. The White Dog arrived a year ago out of the sky from who knows where. He was a mystery we gave up trying to figure out, and instead, accepted him as a gift. From the start, I always felt there was a reason that he came here, specifically for me. I still do. That might sound egotistical, I'm sure he has many purposes on this realm, but I do believe he is here for me specifically.

Each morning after feedings, I spend quiet, wordless moments with him. It begins with looking into each other's eyes. I read once that studies showed that our dogs emit some kind of feel good hormone when we look into their eyes. While some dead stares at animals might be taken as aggression, I can honestly say that with Benedetto our eye sessions are deeply moving and satisfying for both of us. {I wouldn't stare into Marcella's eyes like this for too long}. I'm sure Benne senses my anxiety. When I stop and divert my eyes in our morning stare downs, he puts his paw up on my arm.

I used to think that paw up was met as, Don't leave, pet me, hold me  but perhaps it is really him saying, It will be okay for you, and us.

For twelve years I've put Misfits on the top of the priority list. I will continue to work with animals, and hope to move into healing work with animals and Elder people once we get to Maine. I never got it off the ground here, never made the right contacts or contacts that followed through. But, Maine will also be a new place for me, a place to switch up some things. I need to fill my well, tweak how much caretaking I am doing. Benne knows this. He senses my anxiety.

I hold Benne too. He is a big guy, about 90# and when he stands his head is parallel to mine. But I often hold him as he stands, like we are dancing. Or I get down on his level and hold his neck. I will then talk to him, and tell him that everything is okay, but of course as I've said before, it is he who is saying that to me, I am just repeating what he emits. Once I figured that out, it gave me great comfort, because for many years I thought my value was in my helping animals. But what I'm learning is, I have value even if I was living all alone and wasn't helping animals. I have value just by being me. And Benedetto knows that and reflects that understanding back into me when we have our morning sessions.

What I say to him, and often Marcella if she is near us, is,

"We are going together," and they respond with open brown eyes, receptive to my words, but more importantly, to my intentions.

One of the things I've also been careful of with the animals of late is to not make a promise I can't keep. But with The White Dogs, I make sure I tell them every morning,

"We are going together."

They already knew.

3 comments:

Lynda Gene said...

I think you will like this story from when I volunteered at an equine rescue called Last Chance Ranch. A farrier who volunteered her skills had taken in a big and very spirited black gelding who'd been passed about like a bad penny. She had the heart and head that he needed and things were going OK. Then she sold her place and bought a better one. She said the gelding loaded into the trailer, head down and dejected. When he was unloaded to the new place and saw the same person, all the same animals together in the same place, he looked completely different, as if for the first time, he really, truly KNEW that he was with her for life.

Katherine Dunn said...

BEAUTIFUL story, thank you or sharing! I was working with a healer friend and we were talking about Boone, who I said was very stoic, which he is. But she reminded me that that doesn't mean he has concerns and wants to know for sure he is in my life for ever, which he is. I hadn't considered this, I just figured 'good ol' boone knows its all fine, he is stoic,' so now I talk to him in the morning-'it's okay, we're going together, we'll end up there together."

Marguerite (Tina) Smith Hart said...

What a wonderful post! I have had this quandary for many years, wanting to move from the little trailer I rent to a quieter place with more hope to it. But here is always my problem, the 11 rescue cats I care for + 4 new strays that showed up to eat make it almost impossible for me to consider leaving this area. Because they are rescues they want to be able to go in or out as they please and although it worrys me to have them go outdoors I have learned to live with it. They are familiar with the area and stay in the yard or close by. If I move what will happen? What about the strays who rely on me for their food each day? Caring for life's forgotten ones can be tough, but also rewarding in so many ways so I find contentment here while I pray for a solution someday soon! You are lucky to have white dog, he seems like such a tender old soul! Many blesings to you and yours Katherine!
Tina xo

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Thank you for reading! The farm and my art/writing keep me hopping, so might not respond immediately. Thank you for understanding. ~Katherine & Apifera ~