The Lily Program® ~ An Individualized Mental Health Program For Women

Friday, 30 March 2012 03:40

Bella. My Puppy Love is Forever.

Written by Jacqueline Dawes

I have a wonderful labradoodle, named Bella, who has the gentlest loving nature in the world. To have a companion, who constantly adores you and is going to love you forever, is something that every woman wants. Nobody wants to be lonely, alone, or in lonely coupledom.

This delightful little puppy was carefully planned and purchased from a wonderful breeder who vetted us before she would even consider selling to us. It was obvious from the moment I met the breeder that she loved her little pups. I felt so reassured that the source of my bundle of joy was somebody so loving and tender to her animals. It was a long journey, as I had to go to Portland to pick her up. Quite a hike from Tennessee. Fortunately some of my team members came with me and we all did the plane journey back together. I was frightened Bella would pine and become depressed after leaving her family but that didn't happen.

After the initial wonderment, all the hard work of training started. We had to hire a professional trainer, who would come 3-4 times a week to train the dog, but also provide extensive training for us. Teaching this happy, gentle puppy soul her boundaries was so very important. Yes, we had all the kits, the different leashes, the correct reward treats, and the tools needed to bring about obedience with loving-kindness. Bella was, and still is, so irresistible.

We had one of those invisible fences with the electric collar installed. We had to make sure she was safe. After the fence stunned Bella a couple of times, it amazed me how soon she knew exactly where her boundaries were. Bella knew what was her domain and what was not. This kept her happy and us happy.

As she was growing, so was her white coat and she was as shaggy as a sheep. Time to get her a little trim. The groomer took her back down to almost her bare skin. My Bella looked so naked. Coming home, she was so anxious and positively stressed about this event. After a day or two, she had adapted to the change but was now able to get through the non-electrified fence to the dog next door.

I let her out for a run and when she did not come back after my calling a few times, I was getting alarmed and slightly panicked. The trouble is she can run so fast. She is like a gazelle. I ran inside, broke the rules, and got the dog treats. I was running manically to all ends of the property not calling Bella but “Treat Bella Treats”. I had to enter the next property and saw her in the distance so I continued running as fast as I could to catch her. I kept offering the lure of treats. I knew lots of people would love to have Bella and want to keep her. Bella had no idea she was in danger and no ability to defend herself.

Bella finally looked up and saw a fearful, traumatized me holding the treats and she ran over. I held her tight. How I loved this beautiful, helpless creature. I was relieved to have her back and rushed to get her home and safe.

It couldn't help but remind me when women have no emotional or relationship boundaries, they are so vulnerable. Placing your love and trust in the hands of somebody who cannot or will not recognize your need for safety and security is setting yourself up for life failure. Relationship addiction is a difficult issue for many women. If you feel you have this addiction, you have to be like Bella and have people around you that care and preserve your safety. Playing out drama can lead to much trauma. Beware.

Last modified on Friday, 30 March 2012 03:52
More in this category: « Betrayal, Anxiety, and a Message in a Bottle. Azaleas, Castles and the Hummingbird »

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2 comments

  • Saturday, 31 March 2012 00:16 posted by Suzanne Olesko

    Bella is absolutely beautiful and was always a pleasure to have around. I thought of every way to sneak her in my suitcase to bring her home with me, but alas, she's living the good life at Brookhaven. She's a great dog and what a wonderful metaphor for boundaries. It's so scary when your dog runs away.

    "Boundaries are to protect life, not to limit pleasures."

    -Edwin Louis Cole

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  • Friday, 30 March 2012 12:59 posted by Amanda M Sluka

    She's beautiful as always. I felt honored to be allowed to walk her every day. I treated her like my own and clung to her since she was my only dog contact while at bh! She is a good listener!

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