I have to apologize up front, this isn't exactly a dog training or even really an animal related post. It certainly contains thoughts on animals though!
I am 37, and in those 37 years I have lived many places, done many things and met many people. At this point in my life I have begun analyzing what "home" means and I have come to realize that one little word has so many meanings and can represent so many things. A couple examples; I was born in Massachusetts, my family is still there, so for me that is home. However I grew up and lived more years of my life in Vermont and so there is a much stronger feeling of home for that area. I feel at "home" reading a good book, hiking in the woods, lying on the beach, teaching dogs and their owners, in my husbands arms and holding on to my children. So you see…many meanings. The one place I never considered home was MO. Sure, I would say "I'm going home" and mean my house in MO, but I never felt at home here, in fact I hated it for a long time. I felt out of place and confused by the culture, hated the landscape and saw no beauty around me at all. It was a miserable existence here for a long time. Now, as I prepare to leave and head to yet another home, NH (which actually has a strong feeling of home for me), I am coming to realize that the feeling of home can sneak up on you and can come in the form of people rather than just places. My definition of home is stretching to include some amazing people that I never really realized had claimed a place in my heart until this moment. I would like to express my feeling of gratitude and love for people I hadn't realized had become my home.
I thank Alicia and Janette for their profound friendship, silliness and companionship; you both kept me sane in a crazy sort of way.
I thank Misti Fry, Carrie Galvan and all the trainers with Sidekick Dog Training for helping me uncover my passion and encouraging this journey I am on; For teaching me so very much and making me your friend. I am forever grateful for the path you helped set me on.
I thank Amber Wallace for being my first friend at The Summit and helping me feel like I fit in a little better!
I thank Penny and Brian for letting me see that we could fit in here and find like minded people if we only looked. Your friendship has meant so much to me.
I thank Laura Skiles for raising such amazing daughters that my daughter just loves. They are the type of friends I wish every parents child can make. I sincerely hope our children can keep connected!
I thank the amazing people that care for my animals. Camp Bow Wow, Beanie's home away from home. A place and staff I am so very grateful for and whom I will miss terribly. Brenda Treece, who cares for my cats as if they were her own and whose generous heart and rescue spirit is heartwarming to behold. Dr. Denise, who has seen 2 of my animals over the rainbow bridge and did so with great compassion and respect and who has cared for my other animals with love and kindness.
I thank the amazing teachers and staff at The Summit that encouraged my children and supported them in their educational pursuits as well as cared for their unique selves. It is an environment I will miss greatly but one I am so thankful my children were a part of even if for a short time.
I may not have appreciated it at first but I certainly do now, you have all helped redefine "home" for me and will forever be a part of that "home" feeling. Home truly is where your heart is and after all the places I've been and people I've met, my heart seems to have a great capacity for that word and I have a feeling it will only increase. I extend my deepest gratitude to you all.