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Afraid to LOVE?

Being in love, loving and feeling loved is such a magical experience and emotion. So why is there often a program running that is ‘afraid to lose it’? Why can’t it all just be blissful?

When I first brought my dog, Ms Lily, home to my villa in the rice fields I was scared to love her. I didn’t want to get too attached. I didn’t want to be ‘one of those dog people’ that treated their canine like a kid. But most importantly I didn’t want to experience loss of loving because in my mind there was a good chance that she’d run away.

Morning walks in the rice fields

Lily’s a wild dog. She has a pack mentality and survival is her innate programming. So it doesn’t really matter that I had a posh villa in the middle of the rice field with spectacular views, a great pool and air conditioning. However, she was keen on the free feeding schedule that provided a source of ongoing nutrients. I do believe she understood what being rescued meant.

It was love at first sight actually.

Truth be told, I didn’t want a rescue dog. I didn’t have time. I was designing my shop in Bali and the last thing I needed was a responsibility to a living, breathing person or pet.

When the call came from a friend stating “you need to be this dogs mommy, she’s special” I said “I’ll have a look”. When our eyes met, they locked and it was a soul connection that wasn’t going to be broken. Yes, we had to build trust over time because she was wild and skeptical. So was I.

It’s like when you feel that spark and it moves you. I mean really moves you. First love, first baby, first kiss kind of love. You feel it in your body like an imprint. And then we spend time trying to stop the thoughts about not wanting it to go away…..

What if we realized that in each moment we are blessed with these types of encounters that its ok if it’s only a moment. And that if it’s meant to be something more, then each moment moving forward could be another moment to be grateful. For that moment and possibly many more. It’s a novel way to love but wouldn’t it be so freeing to just stay in each moment and know that LOVE is always inside ourselves. And that its an illusion that its outside of us?

Seriously, I thought Lily was going to run away. She wasn’t willing to stay in the confines of my beautiful garden. It wasn’t enough for her. She needed a much larger perimeter to protect. So she jumped the wall and eventually I just left the gate open. Day after day I would come home from work and she’d still be there. She was ready to come into the air conditioning and snuggle in with me. She’d nuzzle her nose behind my back on the sofa or lay on my lap while I worked.

As a pup she had to overcome a skin disease

Eventually the bond became so strong that the fear of her running away dissipated. But the thoughts didn’t go away as I found something else to focus on that would keep my ideas of “loss of love” alive in my mind.

What if someone stole her?

What if she was run over by a car or a motorbike?

What if she got sick and died?

I prayed for her safety. I really wanted to take her to my shop on Monkey Forest Road to be the greeter so I could have a pulse on her day. But she didn’t like that job. Her cuteness attracted people like flies on poop. But when they got close to coming in, she barked and scared everyone off. We had a fake grass rug in the shop and her peeing on it was what broke the last straw.

She was destined to do the job she loved, protecting the villa and running in the rice field with the other dogs. Probably bragging to all the others about her posh digs.

Ironically she act like a princess and loves to have her collar put on. To a Bali dog that means you belong to someone and have MADE IT off the street.

Lily has taught me a number of life lessons but unconditional love is at the top of the list. Being grateful for the moments we share and not being scared to love are right up there too!

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