hope floats

Posted: January 22, 2014 at 7:26 pm

it wasn’t exactly the calm and peaceful re-grouping day that I had envisioned. whatever, we will get there, given the alternative, we don’t have much choice.

I think the biggest part of the problem is a very real lack of understanding of the reality of both myself and saints. I have invested more than 700,000 hours, $600,000.00, I gave up my marriage, I have sacrificed my retirement, I juggle a fulltime job with here to pay a crippling mortgage and I continually short change my kids and grandkids of my time to care for the animals here.

am I not freaking wonderful?

no. but I am committed.

I get that others have also invested in here…but there is a great deal of difference in the size of the sacrifices and commitments. the reality is…other folks have a full non rescue life outside of here..they have their homes, their families, their friends and their jobs. they have the full and wonderful lives that they chose to build for themselves and NO ONE tells them how to live it.

I also truly do understand that sometimes people looking in from the outside or on the periphery are sure that they could do this better. but the question for me that always comes to mind is..well why then are they not out there doing it?

I have never once in my entire life tried to take over, knock down, undermine or belittle someone else’s work. I have never once told anyone in my entire life that they sucked at what they were doing. and I never once in all of my years in rescue used the “i am doing it for the animals” shield to justify tearing  someone else down.

however…when I looked around me in rescue I decided that the way I wanted to help animals was different than what I saw. so I went out and did it the way that I wanted to do it…causing no harm, no foul.

I make no excuses for who I am or how I chose to do things. for me popularity comes second to meeting my responsibilities. but never mistake how serious I take this, nor how successful and competent at this I actually am. I will not be bullied, I will not be bribed, I will not be threatened or held hostage and I will not be sold into prostitution to promote an untrue airy fairy, warm and fuzzy, feel good  rescue story to increase donations here.

I am truly blessed..we have a board of directors whose ethics, integrity, sense of honor and very real commitment to the rights and wellbeing of the animals and saints mirrors my own. do we sometimes disagree on the details? hell yes but we never disagree on the goal. and they all unanimously and respectfully agree that inside these gates where the animals and I live, is 100% entirely my fish bowl. the fish in the bowl that I care for so well have not floundered because of my care. I protect every inch of saints with my life. one day it will be someone else’s responsibility to protect but not yet.

it is my choice on how I wish to share the experiences of my rescue life here. I have chosen to share it with the staff and volunteers, and I have chosen to share it with the public on tour days. I have also chosen to share it with folks who chose to read the blog.

I have never once lied to anyone here. I tell the stories, the heartaches, and the freaking insanely irritating shit as accurately as I can. are they my perceptions of what goes on around me, well of course they are because I am the one living them. do people always like them? no but then I don’t always like living them either.

there is no doubt that I march to my very own drum and that drum has served both the animals and saints very well. I may not dance to the tune of others very well but I am ok with that because others are not doing what I am.

it took me a long time to realize that I do not have to be perfect here. I don’t expect perfection from the animals and they don’t expect it of me. I also have learned that most of the people who do truly value saints are willing to be fairly forgiving of me. they come here, they see us, they read this blunt and honest blog and they get that this very real life I have chosen, is not all that easy or fun.

I have no desire to present myself for sainthood, this kind of shit would be easy for saints and I really struggle most days. I much prefer to present myself more honestly… as a real life flawed human being who tries pretty damn hard every day to keep hope floating, even when it freaking well sucks.

hope floats because I am just too freaking stubborn to stand by and let it sink.

2 Comments on "hope floats"

  • lynne says

    and hope floats for the animals because of your love and deep compassion. i would like to see me or anyone else walk in your shoes, not an easy and sometimes not a fun job. but all the animals are safe, happy and well loved, that is really the bottom line. no one can take that from you, your not perfect, as we are not, but your pretty damned perfect to these animals. the love they have for you is unconditional and that alone is worth everything, i think.

  • heidi says

    I really appreciate your honesty and integrity, Carol. You are very honest about what goes on at Saints and what you like and don’t like, what people are doing well or what needs to improve….but you do that with yourself as well and with the animals. You openly admit what you don’t like about yourself and what you could do better…most of us have a hard time admitting that to ourselves let alone to everyone on a blog. You don’t treat anyone differently because they volunteer a huge amount of hours, or they donate a lot of money, or you feel sorry for them…you do things that will benefit the animals…end of story. What you do though, is give people and animals the benefit of the doubt and a second chance if warranted. I hadn’t been in touch with you for quite sometime and you could have said no to me fostering an animal…she hasn’t donated any money, she hasn’t spent anytime working here but I think you knew the animals would have had a great home and that is all that mattered to you.
    I think as supporters, volunteers, blog followers, its easy to let ego get in the way and need validation, kudos or just to be right…I’ve done it myself, more than once…but ultimately, its the animals that again pay for our needs, wants and egos.

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