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.