I look up from my work and smile. She has taken over the yoga mat and sleeps peacefully in the sunbeam, as if the ray of light and warmth was created only for her.
She is never far. She spends her days dutifully following me from space to space. She greats me each morning as if she hadn’t just snuggled with me all night, yipping and wiggling with delight that I’m finally awake and our day together is ready to begin.
I marvel at what I’ve done to deserve her constant, steady adoration. I’m a good fur mama, I keep her warm and fed and clean and loved. But she loves me so far beyond that.
We play, but not as much as we should. We adventure, but not as much as we could. An yet, she loves me anyway.
I get busy with my days, working from home, cleaning, reading, forgetting sometimes that she is even there, quietly near, always just a few steps away.
She is at once the least intrusive and yet most loyal dog I’ve ever had. She is not a big one on cuddles, she is not demanding of attention or invasive in my space. She never forces herself upon me. What brings her peace, it seems, is simply to be close, and for me to know she’s there.
Her only goal in life is to love me and watch over me. To be present. Period.
I am in awe of her silent, steady, unwavering dedication to loving me. Unconditional companionship. Here when I’m ready.
It’s the unconditional presence that is so heart-stretching for me. Even on my busiest, most chaotic, cranky or ignoring days, there she is, just loving me.
I realize I strive to be more Bess-like in my life, and in my relationships with those I love. I think especially about my children, now busy adults, and how they don’t need me yipping at their heels demanding attention, but rather need to know that I am always right here, available when they need me or just want a hug.
I think of my soul friends and the time we spend together. I hope I can be like Bess, steady and attentive without imposing unasked-for opinions on the happenings of their lives.
I endeavor to be Bess-like for my husband, fully mindful of our life together, unconditionally accepting, always, always loving.
I aim to be present without pressure, for those I love to feel they can be exactly who they are, at any given moment. Fully themselves, fully embraced.
I am struck with wonder that Bess is like God, always nearby whether I are tuned-in or not. Ready. Waiting. Loving.
I reach my hand down from the chair, and she scoots over to rest under it. She has is satisfied that she has completed her mission today….that I know I am loved.
I wish to be like Bess.