Category Archives: February 2015

Nose to Nose and Ears to Help Hear

Nose to Nose and Ears to Help Hear? 

What the heck does that mean?

Let me explain. (By the way, we sometimes refer to our dogs as W & C)

My oldest dog, Winston, is deaf. Like, can’t hear a damn thing, deaf. Over the years, he’s let Churchill, our youngest, be his ears. When C barks at a noise, paces back and forth, Winston follows him closely to see what’s up. It’s pretty darn cute to watch.

Of course, Churchill has no clue Winston can’t hear. Hence him giving Winston a subtle growl when W gets too close while he’s eating. If only C knew Winston is completely clueless to the warning.  Winston barges in on the dinner bowl like he’s king of the world… and Churchill continues to try to be a hotshot with his guttural growls. Again, pretty darn cute to watch.

Since Winston has gone deaf, he does two things louder–bark and snore.

I assume he barks louder because he can’t hear himself bark. Who knows. I’m just guessing. He also barks more, but at his age, him barking and being active is a blessing, so I try to ignore it.

Now, his snoring, I can’t ignore it. I have to try to sleep through it. For those who are friends with me on Facebook,  I’ve posted some videos that kinda-sorta give a sense of what I’m talking about, but here lately, his snores have only gotten louder and squeakier. Yeah, it can be funny, but there are times when it can be a little scary. Since he doesn’t get disrupted by sound, he sleeps super hard and deep, and his breathing can become fast and erratic with dreams and snores. My (dog) mommy ears kick in, I wake up, and then wake him up. Sometimes, it takes a few shakes, and kisses on the nose, before he comes out of it, and licks me. By the way, I’ve talked to his vet about this and she says it’s normal for deaf dogs and not to worry too much.

The rare moment when W starts breathing weird, and I don’t wake up (like this morning), Churchill wakes me, then literally gets on top of Winston, and puts his nose up to his brother’s nose. I have no doubt he’s trying to make sure W’s okay. There are times Churchill’s nose against Winston’s is enough to wake W and I’m not needed. What a great little brother.



Churchill looking up to Winston.

I’ve been thinking about this all day.

We should all have a Churchill (or five) in our life. Someone to put their nose up to ours when we need to wake up or we’re acting (feeling) “off”. Heck, sometimes, we may need someone to be our ears, just like C is for W. Someone to guide us, help us, give us what we need most.

Over the last few years, I’ve learned who those people are for me–different personalities, different strengths, different things to give, different things to offer–just the way it should be.

I’m so very grateful for all my many Churchills. You listen to me. You listen for me. You cover me with love and attention when I need it the most. Thank you.

Who are your Churchills? Thank them. Love them. Let them know you appreciate them.

Until next time…













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Filed under February 2015

Move Along… Crappy Support Not Taken Here

A while back, I was talking to someone about something I was struggling with in my writing. This person is not a writer, but I thought that was okay. I figured they would at least listen, and maybe (hopefully), give me an opinion or an encouraging word. I was wrong. Here was the response:

“Well, you have your writer friends for that.”

This perplexes me to no end. Do writers have to only go to writers for help and support?

I was at a writer’s conference this past weekend and it felt so good to be surrounded by people who understand the passion, the struggles, and the love of the written word. The camaraderie was palpable and the support never-ending. Judgment? That word doesn’t exist among this group and I have to think that would be the case for most writer conferences and groups.

Here’s the thing– we (writers) have to leave those conferences. We can’t put all those wonderful writers in our pockets and take them home with us.

Does that mean we can only reach out online, or by phone, to those writers we’ve met? We can only get support from attending writer groups in our area? Shouldn’t we be able to speak about our profession, share our concerns about our work, and vent just like everyone else does about their jobs and/or passions?

There have been times when I’ve talked about writing to friends, and they say, “I don’t know what you’re talking about” or “I don’t understand how all that author and writing stuff works.” Or they slough me off and I feel like I should just shut up.

Well, guess what? I don’t know or understand a lot of people’s jobs, but they can still talk, rant, and go on and on about the shit they’re going through day to day, and I don’t make them feel bad for it. I ask questions to try to understand. I try to engage or at least lend my ears to listen.


Does writing really have to be such a loner profession that we can’t reach out to those around us– our friends, our family.

What if I want to (or need to) talk out loud about a scene or character? What if I’m excited about something that’s stewing in my brain and I want to share it. Do I have to save these moments for the mirror as I get dressed? Or do I dare chance talking about it and hope I don’t get an eye roll or “you have your writer friends for that.”

Maybe so. But, in my honest opinion, support goes both ways. Maybe the response should be, “Yes, you’re right. And next time you need to talk about your job, go to your coworkers, not me.”

No. I can’t do that. That’s not who I am. I don’t have that response inside of me.

Can’t we all respect, love, and support each other’s work and passions? Hmmm… that would be too perfect– make life too easy.

I guess, in the end, we need to hold dear and hold close those who love and support us with true caring and interest. Those are the people who matter the most. Those are the people who will be there to get us through the rough patches of our passions and celebrate the successes of our work.

Love, peace, and happiness to you all.

Until next time…


Filed under February 2015