Three and a half months ago, I found my home. Her name is Charlotte and she’s a beautiful, sweet, and very weird little brindle collie/lab/hound(?) rescue from small town Arkansas.
I don’t know exactly what I was doing before, but having a dog companion has made my life complete. As cheesy as it is, I’m reminded of Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros: “Home is wherever I’m with you”, and it’s true. Also, I’d like to think that she’d have a soft spot for their home-state shout out.
Life is hard sometimes, and it’s not always possible to feel at ease with the way things are going. Having a dog’s unwavering love has made me feel infinitely more calm. In a world where she is possible, there’s always something good to counteract the rough stuff. It’s not about feeling doted upon all the time, but there’s a sweet little pup who will always be happy to see me. That’s a simple, dependable kind of love.
I’m lucky to have lots of friends and family, and perhaps the world’s best partner, but adding a dog into our lives has given me a companion who wants to explore and needs to be out. As much as the concept of home is so related to physical space, I like the idea of having a little home base wherever I go who is up for adventures. Everything feels more complete when you’re out having your experiences and there’s a furry friend to represent those feelings of warmth and safety.
As much a she loves me, I love her too. It feels good to love and care for a dog, to teach her how to be the best version of herself, and to support her as she gets comfortable in her new life. Seeing her relaxed, healthy, and happy fills me with a sense of purpose I didn’t know was possible. It’s just a wave of calm and positivity washing over me.
Mostly, it’s just great to have her in my home with me, as part of my family. Sure, it means giving up space in bed to her, and she loves to stretch out, but she adds so much homeiness to my actual home. Looking over at my snoring beast in the middle of the night is one of the loveliest things in the world, even if she’s the one who just woke me up with a particularly loud snort. My dog is my home, and all I can do in exchange is provide her a home in me.