Ever heard the old saying “Be careful what you wish for, you just might get it?”
I have spent most of the past three weeks indoors. Not because I’m sick or injured or in trouble (yes those do happen, but not in this case!). But because it’s been raining here. And I mean raining a LOT!
I tend to not like the rain much anyway, and I especially don’t like hard rain. I hate sprinklers and showers, anything where water comes down on top of me – though I’m happy to jump into creeks or the ocean anytime – so a heavy rainfall really irritates me. But the main reason I’m kept inside so much at times like this is that Handsome doesn’t want me going out and playing in the mud and then tracking it all over our house. He’s happy to take me outdoors to walk and pee and all, but wants to be able to wipe my feet off with a towel when we come back in (which also really irritates me!).
And as I said, we’ve been getting a lot of rain in my state. Enough that nearby there have been mudslides and landslides and even some people getting killed!
And this is all after seven years of drought. Between historic patterns in the western United States that are just returning, and the horrible effects of climate change, it’s been very rough here. Record-breaking temperatures, lots of fires, and a frightening depletion of the water everyone is counting on for agriculture and just living.
In fact, the drought is one of the main reasons the rains have been so destructive. When we had more trees, and more plants in general, they held the ground better. But without them, soils that might otherwise stand up fine are avalanching all over the place!
So please understand – as a Husky-mix, I hate hot weather, and especially hate that we’re having more super-hot days than we did when I was younger. And fires scare the daylights out of me. So just like everyone else in California, I’ve been wishing for rain. Wishing hard.
But wait – we didn’t wish for THIS! Or did we?
If we’re honest with ourselves, we can admit, we wished for rain. We didn’t specify a particular amount. We wanted our reservoirs filled, our groundwater replaced, and we wanted our juicy fruits, healthy vegetables, pretty green lawns, and flowery gardens back. Of course we did!
Now sadly, our drought has been so drastic that even these crazy rains likely won’t give us all the water we need. Too much of it’s just running off into the ocean – because we didn’t have any means to hold on to it.
Which makes me question even more – what’s wrong with what we’re asking? If prayers and wishes actually do come true (as religious leaders and believers in manifestation have been arguing for millennia), then do we need to get more specific?
Or did we just need to believe more that they might come true, and do better preparation for it?
Imagine if we’d spent the last seven years building rivers and reservoirs and all sorts of water catchments – and when these rains showed up, we’d grabbed all that water, which could keep us going for maybe a decade of drought! Great, huh?
But can you imagine how hard that would have been to do? It would have cost billions of dollars, with people screaming all the time “We’re in a drought and you’re building reservoirs for rains that aren’t happening! Stop now!”
So by now you’re probably asking, why in the world is a dog asking questions about civil engineering!
Well, that’s not really what I’m after here. I’m just thinking that, like the people in a drought-ridden community, each and every one of you has things they want. That they want very very much. But I don’t know that you’re ready for them!
I’ve seen men go to great lengths to win over beautiful women, who then treated them badly in ways they had no way to handle. I’ve heard stories of dogs at race tracks who are so fast or clever they actually catch the mechanical rabbit they’re chasing, which of course doesn’t turn out to be the soft pliable bunny they expected! And haven’t we all heard of people becoming super successful, or even winning a lottery, and then blowing their fortune on self-destructive nonsense, ending up in worse shape than when they started?
So it’s a new year. And lots of people use that as a time to put out wishes and make resolutions. Well here’s my wish for you: Wish big, wish hard, and work like crazy to achieve your goals.
But also think.
Think even harder than you wish! Think about what you’d do if you got that money, that job, that person, that rabbit! Think about what you can do to keep what you’ve won, and also what you can do if you find that what you wanted isn’t something you want to keep. How much of that money can you put into an intelligent investment instead of spending right away? Can you change that person, or should you apologetically let them go? And also ask are you a worthy mate for them if they are right for you – able to keep them wanting to stay in this life with you? Or do you really want to improve yourself a bit more before you win them?!
For me, I’m very happy with my life just as it is. So my job is to do what I can to keep it that way. To stay healthy and not get hurt, to keep cuddling up with Handsome all I can, and to hold myself back from wandering when he accidentally leaves the gate open. Pretty easy.
But then there are those other things – things we all wish for.
Let’s wish for world peace – but also the wisdom to know how to handle a peaceful world in ways that make things better, and not just setting us up for more wars. Let’s wish for a slowdown or stop to climate change, but which includes new technologies so people can continue to enjoy the use of energy that gives us progress.
And of course, I wish for you that you keep moving forward in your lives – but that you also always remember that when things get difficult, there’s an eager friendly dog out here you can check in with. Maybe I’ll be able to give you the advice you need, but even if not, I can always send you a big lick on your cheek.
And licks, and kisses, are something – unlike rain – that I don’t believe one can EVER have too much of!!