Arayla, almost 10 now, and a truly gifted lover of animals, has been voicing her immense, unrelenting, and at times weepy desire for a dog of her own, literally since she could form the words to articulate it. When she was 2, her father and I naiively promised her that when she was 5 we would get her a dog. It seemed so far off and easily attainable! Instead, when she was 5, we got divorced, and I became a single mother of two very young children, with no intentions of adding a dog to the mix. This has been one of the deep disappointments my girl has associated with the end of her parents marriage; that this important promise was betrayed.
It is a wild life, juggling full-on work and motherhood, and all the rest, and I have known what adding a dog, no less a puppy would be, and truthfully I've felt a lot of resistance to it. Arayla has been so persistent in this desire, (animals being her deepest passion, veterinary healing and animal-whispering being her inspired intention,) that I've had a lot of time to open and close and re-open to the idea. At first, for a couple of years, I felt convinced that I needed to wait until there was a man by my side to invite a dog into our life. Or maybe he would come with a dog, I imagined, which could be even better!
Then, a few months ago, I received a deeper sense of: there is truly no time to wait. I cannot wait to live the life I’m here to live, not for any reason. There is clearly no avoiding the chaos of this temporary life chapter living in our world the way it is right now and raising young children; all the sacred and inherent messiness of this time of life. I asked Chris, the kids Papa, if he would consider co-parenting a dog with me, if I got one for the children, and he said he would, which would still allow me the moments of freedom and sovereignty I so cherish.
And then when my girl got so sick, in October, any doubt wavering within me about getting a dog was annihilated. I was facing the horrific possibility that Arayla might not make it through, and I remember one night in the ICU saying to Spirit, "If she survives this, I will get her a dog! And I will surrender to feeling grateful for all the "moreness" this dog brings into our life."
“More is more” is my current life motto. Sometimes, certainly “less is more”, when it comes to the potency of words in powerful moments and the poignancy of heartfelt gestures; rich food and good medicine. But sometimes more is truly more! More in all ways~ more work, more love, more beauty, more expense, more reward, more challenge, more aliveness!
When I transferred the children to a new school in September, a 30 minute drive away, in spite of our highly revered and sought-after charter schools walking distance away from our home, I wasn’t the only one who wondered if maybe I was crazy, adding a school commute to my already immensely full plate. But my children have been so deeply thriving at their new school in a way that has brought so much more ease to my heart, more smiles and laughter to our life, more work yes, more responsibility yes, and also more time in the car to converse and rock out to music together; more life, all around.
I see our sweet new family member, who the children have named “Ekara Faith”, as additional confirmation of “More is More.” “More” insists that we stay focused, show up fully, and tighten up our lazy moments; to get our priorities clear, and make the deepest use of each moment. Already, in the last 2 days, she’s brought us more time outside in nature, more exercise, and more family love. I’m still having doubts wash through my being, as I stretch myself even wider to say yes to the wildness of this life, and all the responsibility and coordination it requires… but I’m continually bowing in surrender, deeper than my doubts.
Sending New Year blessings of “More” to all, with much love!~