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Today is a fragile gift for me and for my four legged friends.

I live with two Old English Sheepdogs, who are my joy and my strength. They give me purpose. They motivate me to keep going. One is 12 1/2 years old. Intellectually, I know she is living on borrowed time but I’ll never be ready to say good-bye.

My other pup who is only 15 months old, was diagnosed with a potentially life threatening heart condition and her life expectancy is unknown. Of course everyone’s life expectancy is unknown…it’s just with her…we know it’s unknown. Her condition is inoperable and all we can do is allow her to live the best life she can for as long as she can.

So when I look at my girls, it is with a bittersweet feeling of the deepest kind of love, coupled with a profound understanding that we don’t control time. When I look at them, I am reminded that we must cherish every gift. We must seize every moment. We must rejoice in today.

I try to focus on their love and how they have changed my life, instead of the uncertainties that await each of us. Life is full of uncertainties for everyone. My girls and I are not unique in that regard. I know this, still some days it is easier than others to remain focused on the joy instead of the unknown. But no matter what, I won’t let myself dwell where I shouldn’t.

If there is one thing I do know it is this, whenever I look at my girls, I know I will be flooded with love, I know I will experience overpowering gratitude and I understand what it means to be truly blessed.

These girls were meant to be mine and I theirs.