Finding Contentment

“Woof””Woof””Woof”, I rollover and look at the bright green numbers on the clock sitting on the nightstand, 5:45 a.m. Way too early – especially when your bedtime is usually after midnight! The sounds of dogs with irresponsible owners has awaken me, yet again. I have forgotten what it was like to sleep through a whole night and not be awaken multiple times. I live in a county where there is no leash law. Having no leash laws is a wonderful thing, if everyone was a responsible pet owner. Unfortunately, many are not. When we moved here almost 4 years ago, there were 2 white dogs that would run loose. They would tear through people’s trash, terrorize walkers and joggers as they traveled down our private, dead end road, and of course, do their business anywhere they pleased – for you to clean up in your own yard.

We moved here to get out of the small, crowded apartment we were living in and to enjoy some solitude out here in the country. We figured having our own home on its own land, just outside the city would bring us some peace. Some of the experiences have been quite funny.

Around Thanksgiving time in 2011, I was awakened to a ‘gobbling’. I opened my front door to find an enormous turkey staring right at me! I had never been that close to a live turkey in my life! It was a rather startling, but funny, moment. Luckily, for me, he (or she) left on its own accord and probably became someone’s dinner. Then there was the time a sheep wandered into our backyard for a leisurely stroll. I had the fleeting thought of shearing the sheep and sending him on its way. Perhaps, this would teach the owners a lesson? But, I don’t know the first thing about shearing a sheep, nor what to do with the wool, and I certainly wouldn’t want to waste good wool, so I left him alone. After the sheep had its full of some grass and tree leaves, it went on to greener pastures and I never saw him again. Oh, and then there was the peacock! The peacock deserves his very own blog post. Remind me to tell you about the peacock.

So, you see, there has been some memorable experiences, but there’s also been quite a few not-so-good ones. The 2 white dogs have now multiplied to 8 dogs. At first I thought they may be breeding and selling the dogs for profit, but the dogs never leave. Throughout the years, I’ve watched these dogs huddle underneath vehicles to stay warm in the winter, bite unaware passerby’s, chase vehicles down our dirt road, and scrounge through people’s trash for scraps of food. They are dirty and matted. They are mean, but yet need someone to show them what love is. Many have called animal control throughout the years, yet the dogs still remain and increase in numbers. It’s a very sad situation. One I wish that I didn’t have knowledge of. A situation I wish there were a positive solution for.

The dogs, or rather their owners, are just the tip of the iceberg, so to speak. They cause me to be cautious walking out in my yard and deprive me of much needed sleep, but my surrounding neighbors do this and much more. At one point, we were so frustrated that we decided to put our house up for sale. We had decided that this area was just not for our family. We didn’t have our house on the market for very long before realizing that we needed to do some repairs before we could sell. Another roadblock. Both my husband and I were becoming very restless, and very discontent with our entire situation.

It was so easy to let being discontent rule over us. Afterall, we had terrible neighbors all around us, a job with no benefits and no paid time off, we hadn’t been able to see our family members in years, and our ‘friends’ kept disappearing from our lives. We had all the reason in the world not to be content. Or did we? With our eyes and mind open a bit wider, we came to the conclusion that there was more reason for us to be content then there had been in years. After switching several jobs, my husband had finally found a job that not only pays the bills, but gives us a little spending money too, we have a nice home that even allows us to raise some of our own food, we are in a state that allows us to homeschool more freely, and we are all healthy.

Now when asked if we are going to be moving, my reply is, “Maybe one day.” We still think there may be a different area or a state better suited for our outdoorsy type of lifestyle and we still dream of one day owning a small farm. We do miss our families and hope one day we will be able to visit them more, but thankfully we have technology to keep us in touch with one another. My reply now might appear the same to some, but it carries a different meaning. My husband or I no longer feel “stuck”. We’ve agreed to explore all opportunities that come our way and to view life with eyes and minds wide open. We’ve discovered by not doing so, you end up missing so much. We’ve agreed to be content, even if it means those opportunities lead us back right to where we are through to the end of our lives. We’ve agreed to be content in the life that we are given, here and now. We don’t know what tomorrow will hold, but we have today. We have today to be happy, to love, and to enjoy.

Viventem in momentos!

~ Veronica

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