It Takes a Village

I recently got to see that having help and support makes things happen.  I have a small dog.  A Yorkie, named Milo, and he likes to go.  He nips at us when we try to leave the house, and barks when he knows that he is being left behind.  He doesn’t like being left behind, and will venture out as often as he can.  Usually, we are paying attention but this week, he snuck out under the radar.  By the time we realized he was gone, he was really gone.  This is the first time, and hopefully the last, time that he will disappear, I hope.

When we realized he was gone, it was getting dark.  We searched around the neighborhood, by foot and by car.  As it got dark, we got flashlights and kept looking, calling his name and searching under bushes.  The search got more alarming as we looked, because with all the people searching, we couldn’t find him.  We asked neighbors, and anyone we passed that was walking their own dogs if they had seen a small dog running around.  No one we talked to had seen him, and as we continued to search, the more scared I got.

We live in Florida, with alligators, and big, and I mean big, snakes.  The longer we looked, the more worried I got because I was concerned that he had become something’s dinner.  We have snakes and alligators just behind out home, and one time when he escaped, he went behind the house.  He was found by the neighbors, covered in mud, and very wet.  We searched and finally had to give up for the night.  I hoped that someone had taken him in for the night, so at least he would be safe.  I laid awake most of the might, still hoping he would come scratching at the door, but he never did.

We got up in the morning, after a sleepless night, still worried about what we would do.  I left for work, dropped my daughter off at school, and got to work early.  I started to try to put together a flier, to put up around the neighborhood, and shared my night before with a peer at work.  She educated me about an app, Nextdoor, for my phone.  She helped me get it set up, and when I got to the stream of postings, there was my puppy and a phone number to call.  I was so happy, and so thankful.  Through a series of phone calls, talking to my neighbors, and trusting that things would work out, we had our puppy back (okay, he’s 7 years old) and we were so thankful.  It was such a relief, when I knew he was okay.

I learned a lot this week.  I learned that having a community can bring people together, and solve problems.  I am not a big app person, but the Nextdoor app was a life saver.  It brought our family member home, safe and sound and taught me a good lesson.  When it come to being happy for life, sometimes it takes a village.