Good and bad, beautiful and ugly keep the balance. That’s what keeps us on our toes. Makes life’s journey engaging and interesting. Would it stimulate if it were all happiness? It wouldn’t  leave room for self-examination, would it? And if  a back-breaking killer journey, it would kill the fascination of life and its ways. We would give up and allow ourselves to be buffeted by the stormy winds.

But then that’s how life isn’t! It is not a uni-track, but offers variety,  the unexpected at every turn. One day a fun trip but another a traumatic experience. Happened a while ago when Max, our Golden retriever took ill. In the twelve years of our family togetherness, Max has been a hale and hearty dog, with visits to the vet being few and far between. Mostly regular shots.

But on that particular morning he gave me a scare. I found him breathing very heavily, unnaturally so and it wasn’t even a warm morning. He seemed to be in trouble for the first time ever. Petting, loving words, incessant talking and an offer of water – nothing helped. The panting picked up pace and he seemed to be going short on breath turning the scare into a nightmare. Panting, in need of more oxygen, Max began moving his head from left to right, I saw his eyes roll. All this happened to fast, in a few seconds! To salvage the precious moments, I connected with his vet, who was kind enough to rush in almost immediately. An octogenarian in human years, the vet had to be careful about what he administered Max. The life saving shot saved Max’s life and the day. His pulse and heart beats shot way beyond his normal, suggestive of a sudden collapse. Made me feel helpless.

At that very moment the  delicate string that connects life with death became obvious. The fact that it can snap without warning, suddenly became more than apparent. It reminded me of how close we are to our end. Yet we pursue the futile and chase ghosts that linger, only to haunt us.

However, it was Max’s day. The shot, some medicines did the trick and his breathing became regular after 30 minutes or so of anxious monitoring and waiting. The vet returned to his early morning routine and I sat next to Max checking on him every few seconds!

By evening, everything returned to normal- Max’s pulse, his blood reports, his heart rate, his demeanour and me. His swishing tail defied what had transpired in the morning. He had emerged victorious from the dark and appeared to be questioning our concern!

What a day it had been! It began with a scare, spiraled into a nightmare, yet culminated in a happy ending. We are grateful for the extended time with our pet, who gives me company through the long hours of the day , while I type away.


  1. I saw him that very evening… he was stoic and the effects of his difficult morning were not visible, thanks to your love and care and the affectionate banter you keep up with Max to make him feel loved. He is lucky to have you 🙂 blessed.

    Liked by 1 person

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