the rescuers hair shirt.

Posted: January 6, 2012 at 8:00 pm

janice and i talked for almost two hours past her end of shift…ooops..sorry janice!

but here is the thing about rescuers…we may not agree on some things..but rescuers always understand where another rescuer is coming from. so when i say i don’t celebrate the things i have done right because i am too busy cataloging all the things i have done wrong and wallowing in past guilt..someone like janice will get it.

she won’t tell me about how wonderful i was to take in and care for pops, or puff daddy, or any other the others…she shares the things she feels she failed at too. and if she just sat there and shared all of the good and wonderful things that she has done (of which there are many…) quite frankly, i probably would not even bother to talk to her. it is the measure of the pain and regret that we carry that determines the strength of our committment to the animals and rescue.
cuz here is the thing..rescuers will always measure themselves by their failures, not by their success.

pretty damn easy to float thru rescue on the happy and feel good cloud, it is a whole different story to get up and keep going each morning, day after day, when you feel overwhelmed, out of your league, inadequate, lost and afraid.

yet there are feel good moments every day, even on the worst days of rescue..and today was far from a bad rescue day. it made me feel pretty happy to see nicole turn odie into a freaking blind puppy moron…jumping and flipping and acting totally insane, seeing meghann on the couch surrounded by a pack of freaking happy to have her shitzheads..watching ryan pick up papa john and give him a gentle and loving cuddle on the way to his bath, finding krista here an hour after her shift ended, fussing with tammy about making life perfect for our frailest cats..marvin, granny, sydney, ollie and maybelle. there was that extreme act of kindness and generosity when i went into the Valley Feed Bag to pick up our canned dog food for the week, and they handed me our christmas gift…a $200 gift certificate..that paid for 2 weeks of pedigree pop top food for our dogs!

it felt good when i found some new donated catnip toys on the counter in the medical room and handed them out..cocopuff liked hers and so did marvin and syndey..sydney most of all! i watched janice give brad a pig kiss right on his happy, beautiul face and when she finally left here tonight..she came back because there was frost on her windows and she was worried about crosby (who we had just today moved back to her outside turkey pen house because she seems depressed living inside the rabbit room.)

the things that gives me great joy and satisfaction are not the things that i do everyday..it is watching others do their special caring things..it is witnessing their special moments of caring that are just part of every saints working or volunteer days.

rescue is an emotional conflict..it is filled with such beauty and pain.

janice told me tonight that we have to somehow learn to forgive ourselves for our mistakes…and i knew while she said it, that she had no more idea than i did on how to accomplish this. we just learn to live with it and keep going on the next and next day and we find our strength to go on in the trust we see in each animal’s eyes and face.

we might not believe in ourselves all that much..but they believe in us so we have to try to do the best that we can.

No Comments on "the rescuers hair shirt."

  • lynne says

    and i found that the volnteers at saints feel the same way. like last weekend when i came in on sat and found erin in tears because of pops and kim crying because of him too. we also feel and hurt and it sucks when i can not take big bambi for a walk because i have spent so much time cleaning and i have to get home. i see her looking out the door, yes brenda it is not my imagination lol but i have been taking her for walks for quite a while now and i feel like shit when i can not we see buddy pining for you, we see mandy not being able to get up it hurts us too and i feel good tho when i know you will be home soon to give them all hugs, kisses and loves. us volunteers care so much about those animals it is scary. it sucks having to leave them when we think we could have given them all one more hug. as bunny said, we may not see them tomorrow. but it is so nice to be able to say goodbye to our friends.

  • Penny says

    Carol – do you want to keep the rabbit run available for Crosby in case it gets really cold again, or could we move Leia back into her old run? Leia seems depressed and unhappy in the new run and has never adapted to it. I could move her back on Sunday, if you think it’s O.K?

  • Janice says

    I enjoy our conversations Carol after work and escaping into our world if only briefly to share before the work starts again at home. Still, we are not talking about Mexico or trips abroad are we LOL It is good medicine and it is what has laid the foundation in our friendship all these years. We both know there is no going back , taking a break or going home we are home and there is only going forward and we must make it and do better , get bigger and help more -it’s a hell of a weight to carry 24/7.

    Penny I too have awesome volunteers and when they leave and still have us on there minds this single difference between so many others is what highlights a great volunteer, a real friend to both us and the animals – when they become an extension to us , to our arms and minds and what we all want so very much for the animals in our care . And for those who need us to be there, who are out there waiting for us to find them. We can’t do it , without you.

  • Janice says

    Sorry Lynne I typed Penny’s name in my reply to your post as i was thinking about Crosby and then Leia’s well being .

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