Story 43 in my book has these words:
Some humans and canines woof too much.
They don’t know when to be and let those around them speak…
When we meet, I will do my best to make sure our meeting is about you. Not all about me.
Each time Steve and I go to the big building where people come to go I am reminded of those words.
Humans approach us and ask permission to pet me. I don’t have to yap and yelp to get attention. Eye contact works just fine. And once they start the belly rubs and ear scratches, they also begin to speak to Steve. He often will ask a question or two but, mostly, he listens to them speak.
The humans tell Steve things like:
- “I miss my dog.”
- “My dog died last month.”
- “You have made my morning!”
- “May my children pet Roxie?”
- “I bet she can smell my puppy.”
- “This is such a great program the airport has. What a service for the visitors!”
They talk. Steve and I listen. (OK. OK. I am getting belly rubs and love. But I am listening, too! Really!) At times, I see some water drops in some human eyes or hear a little catch in their throats as they talk about pups with whom they used to share their homes.
And then there are the people who work in the big building who have come to know us from our visits. They smile and talk to us each time we walk by them.
They offer words and touches. We provide the ears and heart.
And there is always a little twinkle in their eyes when we part. Maybe that’s why we are called a pet therapy team. They get to pet me and we let them speak what is on their minds; kind of therapy like.
The conversations that ensue are always about what they want to speak about. Respectful time. Listening time. Smile time. Comfort time.
How do you feel when you are heard? How do you feel when you are not heard? What do you do to help others who need to be heard?
Thanks for coming back to my blog. You make me happier than biscuits!
My book, Roxie Looks for Purpose Beyond the Biscuit, is still available. I share stories and lessons about friends, family, and fun. And I speak about purpose as well. (Steve says for dogs we might just want to call it “furpose.” He makes words up, I think.) Perhaps the book holds a biscuit or two for you or for a friend!
The Growth and Resilience Network®
Steve Piscitelli. 2021©
2 thoughts on “(#61) Listening Time”
Roxie, when Jasper & I were allowed back at school last April, we visited an entire 3rd grade class before starting with individual students selected to read to Jasper. I always walk around the classroom so each child can pet Jasper and they can ask a question about him. This
one boy asked me “I don’t understand what Therapy means?
I asked him “do you enjoy petting Jasper?” He answered by saying “Oh yes”. I told him Jasper is making you feel good while you pet him. That is what therapy means. The smile on his face was worth the entire time I spent with the class! I never had a child ask me that question during the 15 years working with 3rd graders!
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#alwayslearning! (Steve taught me about hashtags.) You and Jasper are quite the Rock Stars with the little humans. Nice! I always enjoyed our visits to the Little Pink Building near our home. The little humans have been so nice. Thanks for commenting. WOOF!