“Bear, move around. It’s on the other side. It’s right in front of you. If you just moved a little to the right, you could grab it.”
I repeated these words to no avail. He never moved, but just kept looking blankly at me like I was crazy for not just giving him his beloved ball. I finally showed him that the ball was easier to get to from the other side by pointing from where I was. His eyes quickly followed my finger and his giant paws clicked on the floor as he gratefully picked up the ball with his mouth, squeaked it a few times before dropping it in front of me, waiting for the next pitch. Ball toss is a part of our morning indoor Winter Olympic Games ritual when it’s too cold to play outside.
Like Bear, I also need someone to point out what’s right in front of me. From where he was standing, he couldn’t see what he was trying so hard to get to but when he saw me pointing from where I was standing, he could see his situation in a different light and he knew what he needed to do. (Most importantly, he got his squeaky ball.)
So often, we need someone to show us something from their perspective because they may have a better view. Either from their own personal life experience or because they might know what we don’t. Maybe they can see something ahead in the road that we can’t see and they can give us insight and knowledge we need that we don’t have in that moment. Relationships are important and it’s how we are wired for connection in this life. We learn and grow from sharing our stories.
I bet the next time the ball rolls in a tricky place, Bear will seek out more ways to get it because I was there pointing out a solution. I think that’s just another good definition of love. Guiding, directing, teaching, and pointing someone to their best self… or their best canine, whatever the case may be.