October is the month of pumpkins, tricks, treats and ghoulish stories. Apart from the pumpkins, our minds create tricks, treats and ghoulish stories every month of the year, often without us realising!
At the beginning of the month my mind created a really scary story for me with such realistic special effects, that I didn’t even see it was a story. It was real – or so I thought!!
Anyone who knows me, even a little bit, will know that our 3 little terriers are right at the centre of my life. I talk about them a lot, I share pictures of them a lot, and then I talk about them some more!
During September, Beau was at the vets because she had some little recurring sores on her paw. After several other symptoms, I asked the vet to check for diabetes. I wasn’t particularly worried – I just wanted to ‘rule it out’.
When the vet called to say Beau did indeed have diabetes, my mind created the worst horror story. Not only did her illness and the possibilities for a frightening and unmanageable future look too real for me to question, but I was reminded of Betsy, Beau’s Mum, who we lost when she was just 6 to heart complications. Of course, the same would happen with Beau, my mind predicted.
Our minds love to predict. They are just trying to cover all eventualities to keep us safe and away from harm. A mind is always doing what it believes is best to keep us alive. If we only had our mind to rely on, then of course it would be important to listen to it and follow its guidance. Thankfully, we have a guide, a wisdom far beyond the limitations the habitual thought-driven mind that guides us even during the most realistic-looking thought storm.
And so, despite the story of death and despair in my mind, a guide far better than my busy story-telling mind was still leading me to seek further information and not accept the predictions of horror. We returned with Beau to the vets and learned how to inject her with insulin, what signs to look out for if her blood sugars dropped and how to manage her care.
Today, life is pretty much as it has always been with Beau. In fact, it’s much better. She has a shot of insulin after her meals, which have just become part of our daily routine. Other than that, she is full of energy. She loves to run and play again – tug- of-war or football at home and zoomies in the fields out on her walks.
Beau has no Halloween-style thoughts about her future or her illness. She just lives moment to moment, responding to her body. When she felt poorly, she slowed down and rested. Now her blood sugars are back to normal, and she feels well, she plays and is mischievous again. She doesn’t seem to worry about illness. She simply makes the most of her wellness. She doesn’t appear concerned for the future, she lives in the moment responding to what is, rather than what might be. I watch all of our dogs do this in awe.
Our minds are great story tellers. We all get caught up in believing these stories – goodness knows I did with Beau’s illness – and when we are ‘in’ the stories, we will experience them with all the emotions and credibility of the best Halloween horror movie. When we allow the free flow of our thoughts and feelings, we start to see life flow and the stories shift with greater ease. We can always return to a space of clarity and peace beyond the horror stories our thoughts create.
Happy Halloween everyone
With love, Sarah (and Beau) x