It begins with a call for help. Someone reaching out to let you know, they have lost their shadow.
“How did you lose it? Where did you lose it? When was the last time you saw your shadow?”
I mean, yeah, sometimes it goes out of sight, but it should always return. This particular shadow has been seen in the daylight, but never at night. It has been seen on a doorstep, walking up a driveway, and in the woods. It was seen near a winery, then a few days later, a couple miles away near a lake.
The shadow is tall, thin, and mature. But as the weeks pass and it continues to be elusive, I fear it has become thinner still and perhaps even broken. Why does it remain elusive, so afraid of the comfort and companionship with its owner?
I thought for sure Mother Nature had stolen this shadow in her brilliant Halloween disguise of Hurricane Sandy. No one had seen the shadow for quite some time. I admit that I gave up my search. I lost my hope.
But then the announcement came on Facebook. A shadow was seen for a fleeting moment. Then another sighting. My hope was lifted. I did not have time to waste for Mother Nature was returning as a Nor’Easter. I had to do something.
Beneath a crystal clear moonless night, with dropping air temperatures, I built a shelter in the woods for the shadow. I brought blankets from home and food, appropriate for a shadow. I felt like Linus in his efforts to find The Great Pumpkin. No one understood his devotion and his passion as he waited, alone, in the cold for a pumpkin to appear.
I did not stay in the woods. I went home. I felt guilty as I laid in the comfort of my warm bed. I slept restlessly. I thought about the lost shadow out in the elements, lonely and cold. Could I have done more? What more could I have done? Should I have done more? This is not even my shadow. Why am I so upset over this?
Thoughts of this shadow consume me while I am at work. I check my email and text messages from other shadow seekers, hoping for a positive update. While on a search in the woods, I met the people who had lost their shadow. I told them, they are not alone. There is a community of people helping, trying their best and praying.
This effort, this work, was not my idea. You see, I believe in God. I believe He has given me a gift to work with shadows. Many times, there are happy endings. Sometimes, there are not. But, when a passion to help consumes my soul, I must do something, anything.
By now, you may have figured out, shadow = dog. Shadow is an 11 year old, German Shepherd. Although he was spotted yesterday, Shadow continues to elude us. He remains alone, now enduring a Nor’Easter. He has been on the run for about 6 weeks now. However, I have confidence that we will bring this boy home. When he is ready, he will submit. He will be like the Boxer who threw in his towel. We may never “catch” him, but he will eventually come to us.
I have done my best. I am not giving up, But now, it is time to let God take care of the rest. Perhaps, you don’t believe in God. Maybe karma, destiny, fate, or Universal Laws is more your “style.” That’s quite alright. I hope that you at least believe there is something bigger than us all. And sometimes, we need all the help we can get.
Be Kind. Be Thankful. Be Significant.