trying to clarify what is bugging me lately.

Posted: September 26, 2012 at 6:38 am

you know…that post below wasn’t really accurate to what i was feeling…my current human burn out and pettiness is bigger than that. i don’t really care all that much if i get honorary mention in the animals passings or not. i actually do much prefer generic condolence comments that either simply state your own peronal feelings of loss or sympathy for the group alltogether…staff and volunteers who may keenly feel the same sense of deep loss.

i don’t like the sometimes sense of imaginary ownership here…that somehow any animal belongs soley to one particular person or a small exclusive group of certain people…that is untrue. none of these animals belong to anyone cuz if they did, they would be in a home of their own and not here.

many times when someone dies, i see post after post of deep sympathy exclusively to that areas volunteers…it is like one or two mornings on the weekends committment was the only worth mentioning relationship these animals made.

so what about the people who cared for them when the volunteers are not here…the other 21 hours a day, 5 or 7 days a week? is the assumption that our anmals live in an emotional vacuum without any other relationships worth noting?

i am not saying that special relationships between humans and animals are not made here…jelly adores KO’s volunteer days, jesse loves being with mo or renee, marvin waits for tammy’s extended lap time, and daphne’s highliight of the week is when jenn is here. BUT these are not the only people who love them…these are not the only people who care for them, these are not the only people physically and emotionally invested in loving them. and these are not the only people who will one day grieve for them and feel their loss.

this week has been a bad week for me being bombarded with various individual human emotional needs and the one that always gets to me is the exclusivity of caregiving priority. i am the only one who cares…i am the only one truly committed…i am the most important one because i love this one or that and they love me back.

if this was true, the animals would be screwed because none of them could survive or be happy the other 140 hours of the week when that special someone is not here. given a choice, daphne would choose to be with jenn over me but that does not erase the night after night of her sleeping safely and well loved tucked into my side or the hours that KO carries her around in her arms….especially when it is rainy or cold.

everyone comes and goes here…most of us have lives outside of saints…we work, we go on vacations, we have homes that we go to with our own families there. no one has the exclusive right to feel more loss or more important to that animal than the rest..except maybe for me. people sometimes do forget that as janice said…i am actually the one who stepped up to the plate and made the life long commitment..i am the one who did give them a home and if i am willing to share and recognize the many relationships that others have with them..why is not everyone else?

when these guys pass..i am not hurt more than someone else..but i also do not feel their loss or care less than others feel and this is true for all of us here. there is not just one or two people caring for each animal here…there is a small army, that we are all part of on the days we are here and on the days we are not.
to think love and concern and care are exclusive to only our individual selves is incorrect and disrespectful to everyone else. that is what is really bothering me..the unrecognized and unacknowledged caring of others..this has always been a group effort, we are too large for anything else.

9 Comments on "trying to clarify what is bugging me lately."

  • Nicole says

    Sorry, this is long winded but I just have to say it!

    I have always just assumed that everyone thinks the same way I do, because to me it is just so bloody obvious who has made the ultimate sacrifice here – and it really is a sacrifice. It might be something that you love, it might be something that you feel a need to do, but at the same time, it is YOU who has made the absolute sacrifice by opening your heart and home to roughly 130 abandoned animals!! Not to mention giving up your financial freedom!

    You have no downtime what so ever. There are many days I come home after working 10 or 11 hours and my dog, Lilly, is just so excited and thrilled I’m home. It’s play time now. It’s dinner time now. It’s rub my belly time now… it’s give me my medicine time now… it’s pee time now… it’s walk time now…. It’s throw my ball time now… and so on and so on… and so many of those times, despite the fact I love her, and would never have it any other way, because my life would not be the same without her, but I think “please, just one night… just one hour even… please… I just need some me time”…. and how many do you give that love and devotion to? And believe me, we all know (even the most critical of people reading this blog) that to do what you do, that you are extraordinary. How many people out there care for the number of animals you do every single day, every single moment of every day, because I’m sure you are thinking about them and worrying about them when you’re not with them, and I’m pretty sure they enter your dreams often too.

    I know in the beginning, when one of the animals was lost, I would post my condolences to you, but I have to admit, that I think I just started taking it for granted that you must know, and probably didn’t want to hear 20 people giving you condolences every time one of the SAINTS was lost. But I’m sorry Carol. I know. I know others know too. I can only imagine how you feel every single time you have to say goodbye. My heart swells with a certain love for you, because I know how much you must love each of them to do what you do every single day of your life!

  • another Doreen says

    Very well said Nicole! I agree, but wasn’t sure how to put it all into words!
    I know I couldn’t do a fraction of what you do Carol and know you love all the animals, especially when you agonize over making the tough decisions for them! I also know that you don’t appear to desire a lot of praise and glory for all that you do, but respecting that leads to the fine line of appearing to be taking you for granted, which I don’t think anyone really means to do.
    I also think that giving condolences to specific volunteers is only acknowledging their dedication to SAINTS and acknowledging that certain animals affect or bond with certain humans in special ways. Perhaps they share a kindred spirit or a memory of someone from their past. I don’t think anyone means to minimize the commitment and caring of Carol or any of the staff or other volunteers!
    Just my humble opinion! I know I feel various emotions when any of the animals pass on, depending on the circumstances, but don’t feel the need to post condolences every time as I assume everyone knows we all feel some sort of loss.

  • Penny says

    Well said both Nicole & Doreen. It’s only human nature that we bond with the animals we care for on a regular basis, and some touch our hearts more than others. I love all the animals at Saints, but the bunnies and the MP room cats hold a special place in my heart. And one of those bunnies (Leia) even more than the others. It’s just that special bonding that we can’t explain. In the same way, we tend to bond with the group of volunteers that we work with on a weekly basis, and our hearts go out to them when one of the animals in their area passes on. It doesn’t minimize the high regard we have for Carol and everything she does and often agonizes over, or for the staff and other volunteers who care so lovingly for the animals and bond with them as well. I do agree with Carol, though, that a more generic condolence on the blog is probably more appropriate, encompassing everyone at Saints who’s heart breaks when an beloved animal passes on.

  • Carol says

    myreal point is tho..that there are people who have been involved and bonded with the animals here that no one ever even considers.
    no one knows that meghann comes and goes thru the bunnies one by one, clipping nails and checking bums?
    or nicole comes when no one is here and does nails and ears…she has played battle with pete (and trimmed his feet too)) for many years…jenn comes and takes pictures and spends time with all of the animals in all of the areas here..capturing the realness of them with her lens.
    laura doesn’t work in any area but knows all of the animals here because she does the tours.

    the animals are not special to just any one person or one particular group. many people invest behind the scenes that no one really sees too.

    and i do esp.think the staff and behind the scenes people are rarely even considered when losses occur. and i want people to think about this. it is not about me or any individuals, it is about acknowledging that there are many people involved here…not just me and a few.

  • lynne says

    you are right a lot of us, me icluded focus in on the animals from our own perspective and do not take into account all of the people and probably animals that feel their loss. point well taken.

  • Caylee says

    Kind of off topic but just wanted to say I miss you, Carol and I miss volunteering at SAINTS. I hope I get to visit before winter. You have been a huge positive influence in my life and continue to be and it means a lot to me. *Hugs*

  • Brenda says

    Caylee, we miss you too on Sundays! I was just asking Carol about you the other day, so really nice to see your name on the comments – and thanks for the post Carol, it does give me pause for thought too.

  • Carol says

    hah,,the gift was mine caylee!..it has been my complete and joyful pleasure to watch you grow up into such a kind, generous and amazing woman.

    i hope you can visit soon….the mongolian monster misses you too!!!

  • another Doreen says

    The final “S” in S.A.I.N.T.S. is for Society and it seems to me that it truly is a society that takes care of these animals (much like it takes a village to raise a child).

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