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49. The Smartphone

Sir Oliver's Granny

A few weeks ago I committed myself to take my smartphone with me when going for walks with sir Oliver. I then didn’t realize that it wasn’t a commitment, it was more a point of common sense that I wanted to make into a habit when going out with sir Oliver. In other words the intend was more of a desire than really taking the smartphone and bring it with me.

There have been moments where my home front wanted to contact me and wasn’t able to do so. There have been times that I wanted to take a picture and I couldn’t.  I could see the need for bringing the smartphone and that was about it.

I tried again and made the commitment again. Now there were times that I did take the smartphone with me, there were times I forgot it and there were times I remembered taking the smartphone with me, yet I decided not to. When looking at this behavior there was clearly something off.

Whenever I brought the smartphone with me, all was fine, and not much thoughts were involved. The moments I forgot, it was not always really forgetting, it was simply not trying to remember. And the times where I deliberately didn’t take the smartphone with me, it was like I was rebelling against the fact that I had committed to take the smartphone with me.

Then I directed myself to have a closer look at the point of rebelling. What or who was I rebelling against? I looked inside of myself in relation to this situation and looked for the emotions that were at play. I could feel the desire for freedom inside of me. Now I had to figure out why the smartphone or bringing the smartphone was withholding me my desired freedom.

I found a belief inside of myself that the smartphone does connect me with my outside world and my responsibilities. On my walks alone with sir Oliver I enjoy being alone with him, enjoying the weather and enjoying a moment of not being disturbed and only focussing on the walk and the adventures that come with it.

It was clear to me that letting go of this belief would assist me to let go of my rebelling behavior as well. The smartphone cannot claim me or dictate me to do anything else than enjoying my walk. It is me who determines how I experience myself on walks with sir Oliver. And if I decide that I am away for 30-45 minutes and only take responsibility for that moment, I can as well take full responsibility for that which awaits me when I get home. No one tells me that those walks cannot be a moment of relaxation, reflection and being here with sir Oliver. It is me that decides if I can fully enjoy me in every moment, it is only me that can gift myself this time with me and my surroundings.

After realizing this I have not yet once missed of forgot to take my smartphone with me when going alone on walks with sir Oliver. Which shows me that when we make commitments with ourselves, and we do not fully understand what is exactly at play, it will be far more difficult to stick to the commitment.

So for everyone that is into New Years resolutions or commitments, think again when it’s merely a desire, since you will set yourself up for disaster and most likely not only disappoint yourself.

 

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20. Enjoying nature to it’s fullest

Sir Oliver 's Granny

Today we decided to take sir Oliver for a walk in a nature reserve on the outskirts of our city. There are lots of trees, big lawns and canals and more people than we had imagined, on an almost summers’ day in October. People were camping and bbqing and making this day into a nice closure of summer while already having entered autumn.

The idea or the picture of taking sir Oliver into the woods or a nature reserve was one of my favorites. As soon as we decided that we would take him for a car ride and go to a place he not yet knows, I was excited as well as hesitant. I mean, was I pursuing a picture or a desire or simply enjoying a nice autumn day? I had to walk it, to find out, what this was really about.

Sir Oliver had not been in a car since 5 weeks, since we brought him home. His other adventures in cars were all about dislocation and getting new homes. Would he love or be fine with taking a ride in the car? The only thing we could do was trying it out and so we did.

The last 3 walks sir Oliver had been such a good boy, or maybe better, we both had been good. Since I no longer made a fight out of starting our walk counterclockwise or clockwise. Him being good on walks was as well a reason for us to try walking at a strange/new place and to see if he likes it.

When we left the house sir Oliver was ready to go clockwise, and when my daughter corrected him he was ready to go straight on. He seemed to get a bit confused as if he had no clue what she wanted from him. The door of the back seat of the car was already open and I lifted him inside the car. He was still wobbling his tail, then when we drove away he got a bit worried and started to wheeze a bit. We tried to put him at ease and since it is a short car drive, all was doable.

Once we got out off the car he immediately started tracking some trails and sir Oliver was super excited. He was like a kid in a sweetshop, he didn’t know what to do first and where to go first. It was really enjoyable to see him enjoying himself so much. And it is true that when the ones that are close to us are having a great time, it does reflect on us. I did feel happy for giving him the time of his life while walking through the autumn leaves.

However I did understand that this happiness of my was a direct reaction to a fear of mine about sir Oliver never being able to fully enjoy himself due to his past. So in a way the happiness was a relieve of a fear not coming true, even though the fear was fabricated within my mind and not made through logic reasoning. And even though the fear was present I’m not saying that a part of me really enjoyed myself. It’s more that multiple dimensions can take place at once, which makes it hard to tell what is what.

So yes, I am now happy and reassured, seeing that sir Oliver fully enjoys being outdoors. On this walk we met with a couple that have a 11 year old Beagle called Spring. We talked for a brief moment, the dogs sniffed each others nose and butt, and the lady said just before our roads separated us: He looks so happy. I was like a proud granny and it confirmed my own findings.

The picture of going into the woods with sir Oliver was indeed a desire and once walked in real time I was able to ground myself and be here. It was no longer about pictures and desires it was about enjoyment with an undercurrent of fear, that I now can put in perspective and take with me to correct whenever I again observe it within myself.

The way back in the car was far more relaxed then before, sir Oliver was able to sit and lay down and there was no wheezing. We decided to do this more often on nice Sunday afternoons.