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When life has dealt you a few too many blows, it is sometimes hard to learn to trust again.  We learn to stop trusting people, the system, our bodies, our minds, and most of all, we are tempted to stop trusting in the perfection of the Universe.

We start out our lives still basking in the glow of God's love.  We have just chosen to leave pure love and light to come back to earth.  Why?  While "heaven" is just that--a paradise where we have no problems, no worries, no pain, and we are pure love all the time, we realize that we are not growing, experiencing, learning and feeling emotions.  So we come back and give it another try.  When we are born, we trust completely. 

Then little things start going wrong.  Our parents aren't always there when we need them, we fall and hurt ourselves, a teacher embarrasses us, other children dislike us because we are different.  Soon enough, we have our first heartbreak, one of our grandparents dies, and most of us are by this time emotionally, physically or sexually bruised.  We start building a wall around ourselves; something that we think will protect us from further pain.  We have stopped trusting.

When we find ourselves in situations that are overwhelming, it is hard to believe that everything is going to be okay.  Most people that are reading this have at one time or another  dealt with at least one chronic illness, long-term physical pain, serious monetary problems, the inability to work, and several painful relationship problems.  To top it all off, most of us haven't been able to obtain financial help because of outdated or uninformed government agencies.   I'd say that's enough to make anyone think that they are alone and that they couldn't trust in a "Universal plan."

Having been through much turmoil lately, I realized that I was having a hard time trusting in the Universe.  I knew that there was something I had to learn from the situation, but I couldn't focus on it because everything seemed like it was going to cave in on me.  It felt like I was in total survival mode and that my spiritual growth would just have to wait until the crisis was over.

In the middle of this turmoil, I decided that I had been depressed over my beloved pet's death for too long and that maybe I should think about looking around for another dog.  I knew I could never replace Max, but I love animals so much and have so much to give; I realized that giving was the best thing I could do at a time when I felt no one was giving anything to me. 

I ended up adopting a Doberman from the Chicago pound.  He was starving (you could see every bone in his body), had been abandoned, mistreated, had fleas, was filthy, scarred, and could hardly stand up.  One look into his eyes and I knew this dog had been sent to me by the Universe.  We adopted him immediately (with the help of the Doberman Rescue league) and took him home. 

Not knowing what torture and pain this beautiful creature had endured, I took it slow and let him lead me to what he needed.  It turned out that the one thing he needed above all was me.  He was petrified I was going to leave him.  He was also petrified that he wasn't going to be fed or given water, that I wasn't going to let him back in the house, and that I wasn't going to come home.  He had a lot of baggage.  The incredible part of this is that he trusted me totally from the moment I took his leash.  He lets me me put medicine down his throat, put ointment on his scars and in his ears, brush his teeth, take a bone away from him (it was making him sick) and hold him close without squirming.  Through all his pain, he was willing to trust me.  I put myself in his position and had to give him A LOT of credit! 

The only problem I was having with him was that he would panic every time I stood up; he would start to gently bite my hand, trying to keep me by him.  One day, I took his face in my hands, looked directly into his eyes and said, "It's going to be okay, do you understand?  It is going to be okay.  No one will hurt you again. I won't leave you.  It is going to be okay."  

I realized as I was saying those words that this is how God must feel about us; I knew at that moment that the Universe is constantly trying to tell us in a thousand different ways that everything is going to be okay, that no matter what we have been through, it is going to be okay, that if we are willing to trust, opportunities will open up for us, that building walls and not trusting pushes people, love and attention away from us.  A dog taught me the importance of trust.

We are both healing from a lot of physical and emotional pain.  We are helping each other do that.  My life is on the upswing again and he has gained his health back.  He reminds me every moment of the day that miracles do happen, that things will always turn around, and that trusting in the circle of life could literally save your life.

Until next time, blessings and love!

-Liz & Junior


 Junior in October, '99                   Junior in January, '00