Two weekends ago, while teaching The Power of Awareness workshop at the lake, my sweet puppy, Max, became very lethargic. Although he is fourteen and a half years young, he is a very healthy dog. Needless to say, I was very concerned, as were the workshop participants who lovingly helped me care for him.

From the lake, I drove straight to Max’s Vet. The sweet young Dr proceeded to manually evaluate Max out, and quickly discovered that his abdomen area was very tender when he was touched. Max’s yelp was a clear indicator that the issue had been located. Next, came the sonogram and nothing was found. The next round of testing included bloodwork, followed by a long wait holding my pup until the Doc came to see us with the lab results.

As soon as he came in, to our small exam room, I could sense the results were not what we had hoped for. Max has an acute kidney dis-ease. As I heard the diagnosis, tears came to my eyes, but it wasn’t because of Max.

Almost twenty-five years ago I heard this same diagnosis, but instead of it being at a Vet’s office, I was with my mother and her nephrologist, a kidney specialist. (I like this big word!) The tears came bearing gifts, which I was able to unwrap after Max and I went home.

Max was given a new diet to make it easier for his kidneys to dispose of the accumulating toxins. He was also given some meds to help reduce his inflamed kidneys, and next, the Vet pumped Max with IV fluids to help force his kidneys to cleanse, and eliminate, the toxins that were being stockpiled in his sluggish kidneys. Max will have to remain on this IV regiment, of every few days, until we visit the Vet next week.

Back to my gifts.

Once I made it home, and I could comfortably hold my sweet Max, I broke down in tears. They came streaming down my cheeks, and I was grateful for them. These salty tears were cleansing the shame I began to feel at the Vet’s office. The shame arose because twenty-five years ago I was extremely—extremely—unconscious.  I was a busy sales rep, numero 1 in my company, I might add—since we are talking about my unconscious and very competitive egoic-self—and on top of that spectacular career, I was a very busy mommy with a young family I was managing… I mean nurturing!

I LOVE many things that A Course In Miracles has clarified for me, regarding the nature of Reality—God’s Reality—and one of those clarifying nuggets is that we are “using time to undo what was created in time.” This means that once we are moving down the path of liberation, to fully awaken, we must re-experience everything we created in the “past,” which we labeled “good/right or bad/wrong,” so we can choose to neutralize its energy, NOW.  When we label things as “good or bad/right or wrong,” we are actually not present to what is because we are simply judging the experience as a reaction from our internal state of consciousness, or lack thereof, at the time.

Max, being the beautiful soul that he is, is offering me the opportunity, from the internal state of consciousness I abide in now, to be loving and shower him with unconditional care. In the moments, when he clearly doesn’t feel well, or he needs extra tenderness and gentleness, from me, I extend it joyfully. He now requires more time on his walks, and I am very patient. When he is hungry, I’m on it. When he needs to go out, I lovingly escort him to the back yard, and upon completion of his deed, I promptly offer him his favorite treat, which I’ve always done, because he trained me well. Sorry, I digressed.

What a difference a fifteen-year spiritual journey makes. My shift in perspective has turned me 180 degrees, and this is truly a miracle. When mom was sick, my taking time off from work, to take her to the Dr, was a hassle. Her neediness was annoying, after all, I already had a small child to care for and mom was, well, an adult! I had no patience for her drawn-out stories about her pain, or sympathy for her newly restricted diet.

I am no longer surprised by all the moments of grace God offers us, in which we can again choose to shift from fear to love, and from judgment to joy. The most profound ones are not about us loving others for in Reality, there are no others, since we are all individualized aspects of the One  Infinite Field of Consciousness we call: God, Energy, Love.

What the shift—the miracle—is about, and here is another profound nugget from A Course in Miracles, is that giving and receiving are one. Yes, I gave Max the love I was receiving. Just as I gave mom the fear I was experiencing, because we always experience the energy of what we offer others, based on our internal state of consciousness, at the time.

With mom, I was afraid I was losing time when I was with her because, as a sales person on commission, time was money, so I feared the loss of my income. When she wasn’t feeling well, I was afraid I was losing out on time with my daughter. When mom was complaining about her pain, I was afraid I was going to lose my own quiet times, if my daughter happened to be napping. Less  time, less money, less play with my child, and less quiet, Oh My!

The Laws of God’s Reality are consistent. I lost time—quality time—with mom. I lost loving her, therefore I did not receive whatever joy would have come from caring for her. By not giving her my love, I withheld it from both of us!

NOW, I know I did all I knew to do then. NOW, I know that to shower Max with love, compassion, and gentleness, is to offer it to mom, and also to me.  NOW, I love Max because I love the feeling I experience being what I AM: The Consciousness of Love. Yes, I NOW choose to be exactly as God created me to be, Oh My!