Monday, September 3, 2012

Kate & Jeanette: Seeing the World

The dynamic duo does not even begin to explain these two! I have seen other duo's like this but Kate & Jeanette have been paired together as if they have one mind. Jeanette is a 3 year old yellow lab -- product of doggie school training specifically for the blind. Kate is a young woman in her thirties, maybe the same year as Jeanette in doggie years? I am not sure how that works but  Jeanette is a young dog, Kate is a young woman who just wants to do her best in life. In many ways they are helping the other to live happily, experiencing the best of life.

I have known Kate for a few years now. She is a licensed massage therapist with myriad interests in the healing arts. She is trying to grow her business which is a hard task for anyone young, newly licensed, with the indomitable spirit that comes from being talented, giving with an insatiable love for learning. I am not sure how I ended up on Kate's therapy table but she did craniosacral work on me as she learned and perfected her art. A placement of hands on different positions, with the pressure of a "quarter" with the intention of manipulating human tissue and bones that have been otherwise shifted or in need of re-arranging. Esoteric? I thought so when I first experienced this touch. But she learned as she gave me weekly and monthly sessions. And I learned too, mostly that I was feeling things. Of course I couldn't articulate what I was feeling but as the universe has a way of working, I just started feeling better. She played her magic week after week, month after month as she tried different manipulations.

 So, she had given me a gift.

Jeanette laid on her blanket in Kate's little office space very quietly as we nattered on about the world, our lives and our various aspirations. One time Jeanette licked my toes during a session reminding me that just because she was an esteemed graduate of doggie training school, she was still out to have a little fun. Kate & Jeanette came and stayed with us for a very brief visit just a few days ago and this was the first time Jeanette had experienced the great outdoors in our country heaven. She ran around the perimeter of the house like a million horses! I don't think I have ever seen a dog have that much fun! She would come in the house occasionally to make sure Kate thought it was OK for her to have this fun -- like she was asking permission! Needless to say, by the end of that day we had one tired dog! Later, Kate and I just nattered on and on about almost everything and decided to take a walk down the country road right outside our house. Kate walked along with my cane, I rode in my little golf cart and Jeanette walked along without a leash. We talked as Jeanette stayed close to Kate and wandered off once in a while but always came back to check on her, she also always came back when Kate called her. Impressive to say the least! Of course things that moved things like rodents -- gave Jeanette a chase or a mucky ditch was more interesting to Jeanette than anything she sees on a daily basis! But she was always close by and never let Kate out of her sight. But that is her life occupation, a seeing eye dog. In this case, a life companion as well. So we walked almost a mile, maybe more but once again Jeanette was a pooped dog!

Time was nearing for Kate & Jeanette to get on a bus back to Syracuse. Kate packed up and Jeanette watched knowing something was about to take place as she watched Kate place her working dog "harness" in the car. 

I'll be honest with you, we never give some animals enough credit for what they can do for us. Just watching a dog mold to her human's wishes and needs leaves me speechless. Jeanette never complained about anything but Kate is careful not to ever make a situation where Jeanette might cross the delicate line that is a part of their relationship. Kate also doesn't "coddle" Jeanette too much, just enough that Jeanette knows the value of Kate's love.

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