As some of you know, I have an old dog named Oakley. She's pushing 90 in human years. When she was diagnosed with leukemia the vet said that with chemo, she could last another one and a half to two years.
That was one year, ten months ago. We're doing palliative care in bonus time now.
I had moment the other week when I thought we might be at that point, the point of the final goodbye. When she got up to greet me in the morning she could hardly move her old bones around and it broke my heart to see her. But the next morning she greeted me with a smile and begged to go on her walk.
Not yet. It's not yet time. Tweaking her treatment has made her almost frisky again.
So the other morning we were doing our slow stroll along the neighborhood streets. Out of the blue she stumbled and sat down in the grass next to the curb.
She does that sometimes now, when her weakened legs give out. She struggled unsuccessfully to get up. I patted her head and quietly told her that it was okay, she could take a minute. After a moment I reached down and lifted her up, giving her a chance to find her balance again. On we went on our slow way.
Later I thought that perhaps this was the best any of us could hope for in life. Someone to walk the journey with us, no matter how slow we seem. Someone who, when we fall, will put an arm around our shoulder and say quietly, "It's okay. Take a minute." And then who helps us back to our feet.
Someone who doesn't write us off for falling. Someone who absolutely knows that we will get up and continue the journey again.
Who walks with you in your life?
Who needs you to walk with them?
If you're a woman in midlife, we have a community of women to share the journey with you. In the Good Life @ Midlife you'll find a monthly master class, a chance for questions and answers and talking together and a supportive Facebook community. Find out more and join us at Heart Callings.