The First Time I Got Happy

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Guide dog Nira


I’ve changed because of my dogs. The obvious perhaps. And I would have changed without dogs. But when positive change occurs one senses the benefits. Shortly after Corky entered my life I had a flash vision. I was alone, sitting at my dining room table. The day had been gloomy with low clouds and intermittent rain. I saw a lit candle and understood it represented my soul. I knew as I sat there with Corky’s head on my knee I had to protect my soul from the winds of bitterness. My life had always been hard–alcoholic mother; struggles with acceptance in school because of my disability; adjunct college teaching while blind–and a life long fear of going places. Now Corky was my familiar, my magic dog, my alchemist. I wrote a haiku in my head: Dear Doctor Jung we/are doing arithmetic/in the sunny void. I was happy for the first time in my life.