Did you know that you will reach a certain age or spot in the trail of life that makes you stop and think about everything that you’ve been through? Some things remain at the forefront of your memories. Like the first kiss or first time you were dumped.

People live relatively long lives compared to our animal friends. For the most part we have years to fix what ails us and learn better ways. Not always…some are destined to die young by accident, disease, or bad choices.

Some folks never get to the point in life where they can look back and wonder why they did certain things. How they would have done them different if they’d only had the knowledge or wisdom to know better.

I don’t think the animals have this ability to think so deeply. They are for the most part creatures of their DNA and instincts. I doubt they contemplate what legacy they will leave behind in such a few short years.

If they do, I’m sure they think about the good times they remember. I doubt they dwell on the bad as much as we do. They live in the moment and once that moment has passed its forgotten for the most part.

Unfortunately, we think a lot. Sometimes too much and that makes our moments sometimes full of pain, guilt, regrets, and dreams never attained. We dream much more than we actually do something about achieving it. We wish on the lottery, a rich spouse, a big house, a new sports car…and the list goes on and on.

And so, I sit here and wonder what my own legacy will be. What will I be remembered for? For being a cruel and mean person who only thinks of themselves…or someone who loved his life and did all he could to get the most out of what he was given.

The choice is easy to make but hard to actually do. Its easy to dream and take the wrong path hoping that you won’t have to work hard and suffer to achieve those dreams. Fear of failing stops most folks from even trying.

I think my dogs have taught me to take the good and the bad, and to never give up no matter what. Rewards are not measured in gold, but in little slices of love. Those little times amid the storms of life when you know you are loved and give it back just as much.

Our pets don’t have any choice on the life they were given. They might have a great life full of love or one of abuse and pain depending on who owns them. We do have choices… and nobody owns us unless we allow it.

Our legacy depends on us for the most part. We can shape our lives and change it to be better if we try. The legacy of my dogs is that they taught me this, and many other lessons. Lessons from those with much less choice on how life enfolds than I have.

They leave us with a legacy of love, and the hope that we will do the same in our own lives. Everyone’s life is different, different goals, dreams, and hopes. We all weather different types of storms in our lives. The point is to try and leave your legacy of “A life well-lived.”

To do what you wanna do, to leave a mark – in a way that you think is important and lasting – that’s a life well-lived.”

~Laurene Powell Jobs

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