I just got back from walking our 2 dogs, I went our usual route through a cow pasture, across a semi busy road and into a playing field.
I let them off lead while they are in the playing field and they run around sniffing and chasing each other and generally having a nice time.
Today, as we were on our second lap they both suddenly took flight in the same direction, this would normally signal another dog had ventured too close and they would go for a look-see. After a moment I saw what it actually was.
Three deer had entered the field from over my shoulder and were sprinting top speed to get to the next field along which would give them cover (we live in a semi rural location). I called after both dogs to no avail. Off they went at top speed heading after the deer, that were now heading for the busy road!
My heart stopped momentarily as our Labrador has chased deer in the woods before and she goes deaf to our calls. I started running in their direction calling each over and over in as calm a voice as I could muster, but they kept on running. The deer went out of sight but the dogs continued chasing.
Thankfully, whether they realised they would never catch the fleet footed deer or whether as they approached the road they realised they should have their leads on – I don’t know, but they both turned and trotted back to me with very proud body language.
Good dogs, good dogs, is all I could say with my heart in my throat. I quickly reattached their leads and calmly walked home.
On the way I thought about that fearful feeling. It’s always to do with loss. Some may say fear of pain too, but I’m not sure. Women accept pain in childbirth, boxers accept pain in the ring. Pain is feared when it’s attached to loss of control.
So, if fear is about loss – how can we move past it, through it?
I suppose we must accept the loss. Accept the pain that may accompany that loss. And then fear will have no hold over us. Easier said than done in the heat of the moment. I was afraid for the loss of our dogs and I don’t know how I could accept that.