"Did you ever look at your dog and think, how did I get so lucky?"
by Skip Cohen
It's Sunday morning, and I'm off-track from the business of photography, but that's what Sunday Morning Reflections are all about. Just like new parents who are wonderfully obnoxious, showing you baby pictures and telling you about their new addition - people with dogs are no different. When I found that quote above, it got me thinking about a lot of things, not just Lucy and Belle. However, they're the perfect place to start.
I'm not sure where the spark of insanity came from, thinking raising two puppies at the same time was something we could easily do. Sheila and I have both had other dogs as puppies, but we forgot about the work it takes and the importance of consistency. But after eleven weeks we've finally got light at the end of the tunnel! They sleep through the night...the crate's dry every morning...they've got a vocabulary of about 8-10 words and the word "NO" is being used less and less each day.
Our lives have changed as these two knuckleheads have latched on to both our hearts. But it never would have happened if the two of us hadn't been focused on working together. We don't always agree, and Sheila's a lot tougher on some things than I am - but over the last three months, I've learned a lot about myself.
There's a line I've used many times in posts and workshops - growth only occurs outside your comfort zone. Getting two puppies was clearly outside my zone, and it's changed how I'm doing some different things, and that brings me right to my point.
Last Sunday, I mentioned working in the Platypod booth at IUSA, and I couldn't have been more nervous. I hadn't worked a booth in twenty years. It was definitely outside the comfort zone. But it was a fantastic show, and the response to Platyball, as well as the interest in the regular product line, was remarkable. Plus, each day, my network grew a little more, meeting other photographers, as well as catching up with old friends.
It's not just looking at the pups and thinking, "How did I get so lucky?" It's writing this post right now, looking at Sheila, catching up to friends in Cyberspace today, and working on new projects and asking that same question. Even on those days, jam-packed with stress and the pressure of various deadlines bring out that same feeling of how lucky I am.
Our lives keep changing. It's not all roses and not without growing pains, but in the end, I feel so fortunate to love what I'm doing; appreciate my friends and like how this old dog really can learn some new tricks!
Nothing earth-shaking in today's topic, just a reminder to appreciate everything in your life - even the tough challenges. Everything plays a part in making you who you are, and there's that old line to remember, "Without change, there'd be no butterflies!" It couldn't be sappier, but it's change that helps us learn to stay focused and be successful whenever we step out of "P" mode!
Wishing all of you a terrific day ahead and time outside your comfort zone doing something you don't usually do. Go for those long therapeutic hugs, and don't forget you're never alone. Appreciate everyone on the journey with you. Make it a day looking at your world and doing the same thing I'm doing right now...wondering how I got so lucky!
Happy Sunday, or Monday if you're on the other side of the world.
Check out "Why?" one of the most popular features on the SCU Blog. It's a very simple concept - one image, one artist and one short sound bite. Each artist shares what makes the image one of their most favorite. We're over 100 artists featured since the project started. Click on the link above and you can scroll through all of the episodes to date.