It’s your moment; live it your way

Our German shepherd, Shilo, just starting barking for no apparent reason.

I’m sitting at our kitchen counter and Shilo is laying on the floor of the bathroom to my left. Shilo likes to lay on our bathroom floors. I think she likes the cool feel of the tile, but, then again, she’s a dog so maybe she likes knowing that no matter what happens she is near to a water source.

It’s sort of tough to read a dog’s mind is what I’m saying.

As a general rule, Shilo doesn’t bark a lot. Shilo is one of those “If I have something important to say, I’ll let you know” types.

Most of the time, Shilo reserves her barking for when the doorbell rings. When the doorbell rings, Shilo feels it’s her job, by barking, to say “THERE IS SOMEONE AT THE DOOR. QUICK WE MUST OPEN THE DOOR SO WHOEVER IS AT THE DOOR CAN PET ME. PLEASE HURRY, I MUST BE PETTED IF, IN FACT, PETTED IS AN ACTUAL WORD.”

Again, I’m trying to read Shilo’s mind here.

But a minute ago, Shilo barked but the doorbell didn’t ring. Shilo just barked and then looked at me as if to say: “Did you hear that?” And so, in order not to embarrass her, I walked with her to the front door and opened it to show Shilo that there was no one there. Shilo gave me a look that either meant “Hmm, that’s strange” or “You sucker. I got you to open the door for no reason.”

Shilo is 12 years old, which is sort of old for a large dog. She doesn’t move as well as she used to, but that’s OK. Neither do I.

Even if Shilo is moving slow, she seems to be happy. She seems to like to live in the moment. She doesn’t seem to dwell on the past nor does she seem to want to look past the now.

I think that’s a good way to live your life. Sure, looking back can be sort of fun, but to look back in an effort to change things is an exercise in futility. Treasuring the past is a good thing, ruing it is not. In my humble opinion.

Looking ahead can be equally dicey. Thinking ahead too much can cause you to miss what’s happening right now.

The other day my wife pointed out that in a couple of months our 20-year-old daughter, Emma, will return to college.

“Doesn’t that make you sad?” she asked.

I told my wife she shouldn’t look ahead to the day Emma goes back to college.

“Just enjoy today with her,” I said.

My wife nodded her head as if to agree with me, but I know that nod. It’s a nod that says “I’m nodding my head to make you think that I agree with you, but really what I’m doing is thinking about the fact that next year Emma may take an internship in another city and won’t be able to spend time with us and then after that she’ll graduate and move away and we’ll never see her again.”

It was, as it always is, a hell of a nod.

My wife has a hard time living in the moment.

We recently returned from a nice vacation. And, as she does whenever we go somewhere, my wife kept insisting on taking pictures in order to record every second of our vacation. This irritates Emma and me.

“Will you stop,” Emma said at one point. “Can’t you live for the moment?”

But maybe not living in the moment is my wife’s way of living in the moment.

And maybe that’s the key. It’s your moment. Live it your way.

Oh, and remember to keep the beer cold.