On Saturday I not only attended a fun match with Psyche, but while there I met a huge inspiration.
At this fun match there was a dog named Lucy. Before her run I didn't pay much attention to her, but I remember vaguely hearing her name called for her run, and just so happened to be ring side when she ran. The man handling her had a head halter on her, and a tab leash. Between each obstacle he was grabbing the tab and going along to the next obstacle. I noticed he spoke to her a lot, clicked just before the jump, and tapped the top of the tunnel. I sat there thinking, "Oh, just a new dog, or a dog that is reactive." and put the clicking to poor timing and the tunnel tapping to a dog not understanding tunnels.
It wasn't until he finished his run, which involved two sets of 12 weaves and an a-frame, that I heard him come off the field and say, "Not bad for a blind dog!"
I get tears in my eyes even now, just thinking about it. Lucy's owner, on cloud nine from the pure adrenaline of being able to do agility with Lucy, came over to us while a friend was telling us about what he does to signal each obstacle, and I, with goosebumps and chills, met Lucy for the first time. She happily greeted me, once she realized I was there, and when I stopped, went back towards her owner and the only word to describe how they interacted was pure love. It was clear that Lucy knew that that was her owner, without hesitation, and saved a special kind of love for him.
I talked the rest of the day to Lucy's owner, about how their life is, how they can leave an old blind Lucy dog on the couch, go into the kitchen to get some cheese and before you know it she's standing behind them, waiting for her treat.
They adopted Lucy when she was 2 years old, and they knew then that she was blind. The vets told them that she'd been blind for a very long time, likely from birth, but that didn't stop them. Something about Lucy called to them, and so they took on the task of Lucy and her lifestyle, which can't have been easy to start. Lucy's 6 now, and they've been doing agility with her all along. She does all of the obstacles, and enjoys every second of it.
Meeting Lucy made me stop and think. Psyche and I battle trial issues, sure, and we have our shares of ups and downs, but neither of us battles such a thing as being blind. And it makes you stop and think, why is it that I can get upset about some issues Psyche and I are having when things could be so much worse? Lucy acted as reminder for me this weekend, that the most important thing is love. Lucy does agility because she loves her handler. At first I thought, "I can't imagine that kind of love." but really, Psyche and I have that love. It's just sometimes I'm blind to it, when really, the only thing I need to see at all is that love. Psyche and I could be blind to everything else in the world and be okay, as long as we could still see our love.
Lucy's story will be something I think of daily. When Psyche and I stand at a start line, Lucy will be in my thoughts, acting as an inspiration to remind Psyche and I that we can get through anything, as long as we have love.
Thank you, Lucy.