Since my childhood, I have always dreamed of having a dog. In 2009 I persuaded my family to get me a puppy. My mother was against the decision, as she considered a dog to be a hassle, and she questioned my determination and ability to take care of a pet as I was only 19 years old at that time.
Inspired by Shakespeare’s play Midsummer Night’s Dream I named the puppy Oberon (like Oberon a King of the Fairies )
The first few months with Oberon were exhausting, as I had no idea what it entailed to be a dog owner. I also felt the severe pressure from my mother, as I was closely watched and, God forbid, if Oberon chewed on something of hers — she would criticize me and express her unhappiness with the poor dog.
I had to prove her wrong.
Somewhere between the leaves falling and the first snow that year, the unexpected happened. The puppy paw prints found their way into my mother’s heart, and their friendship was forged. Since then they became inseparable and the puppy became an accepted member of our family.
My mother has been blessed to spend over four years with Oberon. Their bond has only grown stronger to the point that I could barely recognize my mother who hated the idea of having him. Thinking back, I know, that Oberon has changed my mother in many ways.
When my mother was diagnosed with an incurable form of cancer, it was Oberon who was by her side 24/7, his soulful eyes staring and loving her just the same.
I know now that some of her last days on Earth were bettered because of him.
Oberon is an old dog now and suffers frequently from gastric issues. A few days back I was informed by the vet that he may have a very limited time with us. The thought of losing him made me realize how many things he has taught me about Love, and how much I am grateful for sharing my life with him.
Love is Unconditional
Oberon has taught me to love unconditionally and love in abundance. When a dog spreads love, they don’t submit half of their heart but love wholeheartedly. They love without expecting it back. They are the perfect epitome of love.
There were times when my mother shoved him away unnecessarily. There were moments when she was feeling too sick and weak to even acknowledged anyone’s presence. To him, it did not matter. He was happy to be around her, in whatever mood she was.
It is always a joyous feeling to be loved and feel loved. The love that we show for those close to our hearts should always be unconditional — and that is what Oberon has taught me.
Love, after all, is the perfect obligation to being alive.
Love is Unshakable
The bonds we have with animals are different. Because they can’t speak, they will always take our side of the argument by default and laugh at all our jokes — important condition for any healthy relationship.
Human relationships, on the other hand, are much more eruptive and short-lived.Whether by choice or chance, people come and go from our lives.
I was never going to walk away from Oberon. Our bond was always unshakable, from the first time I held him as a puppy. To a lot of people, he was just a dog.
To me, he is a living, conscious being that I loved at times more than anyone or anything else in the whole world, including myself — but he just happened to be a dog.
I always thought that he was the one dependent on me, but now I’m beginning to realize the full extent of which I am dependent on him as well.
Truth be told, Oberon has taught me the experience of transcendental, selfless, and unconditional love. This is possibly the most amazing aspect of true love. No matter what the circumstances, no matter what the hardships are it is unconditional and everlasting.
Oberon has been by my side when my loved ones died. When the stress levels were high. When I wasn’t at my best. No matter what, I can rest assured that my dog is going to stick by my side. In a world where nothing else is guaranteed, that’s the best comforting thought.
Love is Eternal
I came to realize the full depth of what dog offer us.
They may not understand every word we say, but they definitely apprehend a great deal of what we don’t say. They feel our sorrows and comfort us in distress. They share their naive enthusiasm for life. With an urgent look of “take me for my walk, please” they give the grief-stricken a reason to get out of bed in the morning.
With an affectionate lick, they encourage the anxious child just back from her new school to tell everything into their soft, attentive ears.
One day Oberon will pass away, and when he does — I will always remember him as a soul who has changed my life.
I will look back to the moments in life that we’ve spent together with gratitude and love, and I will know that he is well, and looked after because he will be united eternally with my mother.
Thank you for reading.