💜Ridonculously long post of hope and possibility:
10 months ago my husband was offered a job overseas: less than 2 years after moving into the house we’d built after losing our old one and pups to fire a year prior. Losing them, our darling Mastador, Ziba, and our big mama’s boy Dane, Hagrid, prompted our search for new loves to *try* to fill the holes left in our hearts. We found them. EM Guinness, and Dane Fezzik. Of course we learned along the way that the holes aren’t filled. Our hearts just grow with the love for our new babies.
7 months ago we had to rehome Fezzik. He couldn’t travel in the car to be able to have house showings and we needed to sell our house to be able to make this move. That was an albeit AGONISING blessing in disguise. He and Guinness loved each other dearly, but their behaviour and energy cycled in a negative and unmanageable way, making him more anxious, and her seemingly aggressive. Which she’s not. At all. But we innocently and mistakenly read it as such. As hard as it was to know I’d never get to kiss that big nose again, and be kept up at night anthropomorphising his confusion, it had to be done. I realised though, when 2 weeks after the transition I met him with his new owners at our vet to have him neutered, he now just had a bigger family! His new dad sat in the waiting room and cried, worrying about something happening to “his boy” while under anaesthesia. The love these folks had for him was more than I could’ve ever hoped for. And there wasn’t a void for Fezzik. Any longing. He’d just gained a new mum and dad. He still had us in his heart. And his new family has become OUR family, and he is so content there. On a road out in the country without traffic (the root of his deep fears), with a Dane sister, duck buddies on a pond, and even a C A T! Hard as it all was, it couldn’t have been better or more providential, and we could begin to move forward with our plans.
3 months ago, after finally selling our dream house, we were told we couldn’t bring Guinness. My heart shattered. Everything I loved and had worked so hard to build and repair felt as though it was being taken from me. My house, my garden, my sense of safety and security; being in a place I’d called home for over a third of my life...my darling Dane, and now my Mastiff who, in the absence of little brother Dane’s energy, had come into her own, revealing the most perfect dog in the universe. I’d always loved her, but I felt that I’d just gotten to know her. I didn’t want to go. But things were in motion.
I let the grief pass through me, and then I said “no.”
We were going, but dammit we were taking our dog.
I’m giant ball of feels today. It’s been nothing but feels for the last 10 months. Every bit of good news we’ve received in the last 3 months about Guinness; hopeful news: a house that said yes to her, or a big enough crate for travel, etc., was then deflated in one way or another, throwing us back to the starting line. We found several amazing families in Virginia who offered her a loving home. I tried to make peace with that. But I just couldn’t do it. I don’t know what it is about her that turned me into this unrelenting, determined warrior. If all of the loss over the last 3.5 years culminated in the thought of losing her? If she was just my limit? My big NO. I can’t imagine that I actually love her any more than I do Fezzik. (I have 4 human kids, and I have the same amount of love for each of them). Or maybe she’s connected to me in some cosmic way that we’re just not meant to be apart? Who knows. But it’s always been a hard NO for me where she was concerned. Even to the point of causing some pretty epic discussions with my husband. 😉
So...yes...I’m a giant ball of feels today. A month after arriving, and a week after moving into a house that finally said yes to her, I am shouting my cheesy woo-woo proclamation that if you are a mastiff parent, you have mastiff-sized love, mastiff-sized determination, which means that mastiff-sized things are possible!!!
Our girl is home!!!
(And she traveled like a freaking ROCK STAR!)
Roman Gottfried working with you was so empowering and enlightening. You opened my eyes to possibilities I always felt were way out there for *other* people to enjoy. That I just couldn’t “do it.” And that “it” was something to learn, somehow. Trainers got “it,” but it required a discipline and authority I just didn’t have. 🤔
You and Barbara helped to point me in the direction of the innate wisdom we ALL share: human AND canine. While I’m still honing my energy in relation to her, I feel like we communicate on a different plane than before. Which is truly beautiful. And she’s so much happier for it.
We are all so grateful for what you do!!!
SO much gratitude to Roman Gottfried who was there for us at every stage of this roller coaster, guiding us with his wisdom through education and insight, helping me see the power of energy and the importance of understanding what means what in dog speak. 🙏 - Marnie Walsh - Germany / USA