Sunday, February 15, 2009

this book...how it's touched me....


Am almost finished reading Marley & Me. Wow.... it has touched my heart in so many ways. The writer, John Grogran, is an amazing story teller.... his family, his life has touched the deep emotional strings inside of me, and Marley.... the dog.... I laughed, cried and cringed w/ them through all of their ups and downs.

It has given me a different view of Henry.... different view of dogs, in general. Helped me see a lot of things, and respect and love the nature of dogs... especially Henry.

I got this book before I realized a movie had been made... only picked it up because we had only just gotten Henry and I wanted to get an idea of what a bad dog was.... just in case Henry wound up being similar. Only after starting to read it did I see that a movie had been made. My older sister is also reading w/ me, so it's been nice to hear her thoughts.

I wont give anything away... just wondering if anyone else had come across and read this book. I love it.... and forever my heart will feel differently.

There are really good excerpts from the book that I'd like to share....

On page 243, chp 24, John Grogan says, "Marley reminded me of life's brevity, or its fleeting joys and missed opportunities. He reminded me that each of us gets just one shot at the gold, with no replays. One day you're swimming halfway out into the ocean convinced this is the day you will catch that seagull; the next you're barely able to bend down to drink out of your water bowl."

pg. 279, chp 28, he says, "A person can learn a lot from a dog, even a loopy one like ours. Marley taught me about living each day with unbridled exuberance and joy, about seizing the moment and following your heart. He taught me to appreciate the simple things- a walk in the woods, a fresh snowfall, a nap in a shaft of winter sunlight. And as he grew old and achy, he taught me about optimism in the face of adversity. Mostly, he taught me about friendship and selflessness and, above all else, unwavering loyalty."

I needed to read this book.... not only because it's opened my eyes and my heart, but when someone asked me last night WHY we had gotten a dog.... this is why...

pg. 281, chp 29, he says, "Animal lovers are a special breed of human, generous of spirit, full of empathy, perhaps a little prone to sentimentality, and with hearts as big as a cloudless sky."

I only wish some ppl could understand .... but some will never know this sort of love for animals.

I cried so much today while reading. Many times I had to put it down and wait a bit before being able to pick it up again.... it made me think a lot about my cat, Frankie, who seems to be on the verge of death some days and then 'making it' the next. I know what's ahead of me and I'm truly dreading the day..... but instead of being angry because he's dying... which I've been for weeks now, I'm trying to take a different approach.... and I hope, when the time comes, it helps.

9 comments:

Chief Rock Chef said...

I have seen and heard a lot about this book, all good.

My family has had a lot of dogs over the years - my mom used to rescue them, and at one point there were 21 dogs between us! They were all different, each with his won story, character and quirks. Maybe I should blog about some of them. Sadly I don't think we have photos a lot of them any more.

Might have to get this book for summer reading!

Olivia said...

Sorry to hear about Frankie.

This blog post comes with interesting timing. Coincidentally just now I was watching a Jack Russell skip rope with his owner, and was just going all gooey and about to say "ahhhh" when your blog loaded and there was Marley.

Even better, though, yesterday I was watching something called "Why We Love Our Dogs" and there were many touching stories about how these dogs were there for their owners when they lost loved ones, went through depression, or serious illness. I was touched throughout, but I really lost it when I watched a couple at the vet with their German Shepherd, looking at his X-rays of the tumors on his lungs. They were about to decide that they would rather enjoy a short pain-free two months of quality time with him, than chemo and vet visits that would only prolong the suffering for 6 months.

I cried more than they did, especially because of the way he looked up at them with his eyes and they cocked their heads and he cocked his, and went in for a hug.

Dogs get you here *taps heart* you know? I wanted to see the movie but I would also like to read the book sometime.

Olivia said...

P.S. Of course, when I was a child we had a dog, so I know all about the love and that's why I feel them so much.

Um Naief said...

cheif rock chef, i think that this book would be good summer reading!!

21 dogs!!! wow!! and here the hubby things two would be a bit much!

henry has started using his eyebrows to express feelings... which i find adorable. really makes you look at a dog differently when they get their eyes and such in the mix.

olivia, i agree... there's something about dogs that get me. i can remember, many years back, that i was volunteering at a no-kill animal shelter, and when i first started there, we took a tour of the dog area. i broke down... there was just something about the dogs... the way they look at you... it really tore at my heart... so i know exactly what you mean.

thank you, re: frankie. it also truly tears at my heart.

we had dogs when i was a small girl, but never inside dogs and i never got to 'know' them. henry is the first for me and i think we're just starting to get along.... if that makes sense.

so many ppl don't get how animals help you.... especially w/ illness and depression. it's a shame. here, they teach children to be afraid instead of to love. :(

The Moody Minstrel said...

I've never had good luck with dogs, even though I've always liked them. When I was little, we had problems with almost every dog we got; either they were hyperactive, mentally retarded, or had a chronic sickness of some kind, so my mother always wound up getting rid of them. There was only one I remember that was an exception; she was a really good dog, but she disappeared once when we went on a family trip and left her at home in the care of neighbors.

Coincidentally, a refugee family had moved into the neighborhood a short time before, and a whole bunch of dogs suddenly disappeared in the neighborhood...until someone caught one of the refugees chasing a dog with a snare. The cops were called, and they found something very disturbing in their kitchen.

I don't even want to think about it.

Anyway, that's why we were always mainly a cat family.

RC said...

i haven't read it myself but no people who have and they too love it...perhaps i need to get my hands on it!

Chief Rock Chef said...

The guys on the local radio were talking about the movie this morning. They had a special screening with guest listeners. Sounds like they all cried (even the butch DJ) at the end...

Um Naief said...

chief rock chef, that's when I truly cried my eyes out... at the end. I can't wait to see the movie... :) Really, it gave me a special feeling for Henry...

moody, i left you a comment the other day but don't see it here... but wanted to tell you that we had dogs when i was young as well, but they never stayed around. many, my step dad would drop, and the others... i have no idea what ever happened to them. we always had cats inside, but never dogs, so this is a whole new area for me... but, as time goes by, i'm really liking it.

oh yeah... if the ppl in the neighborhood are eating the dogs... be CAREFUL of your cat. those ppl who eat dog, also eat cat!!!!!!!

RC, thanks for stopping by. if you're an animal lover, you'd love the book! you should read it... very good. i'm trying to get the hubby to read it, but it's like pulling his tooth w/ a string... he won't budge. ;)

Miss Fluff said...

I've never had a dog. But, I know that pets can touch our lives, just as much (if not more), than people.

God Bless Henry and his family. :)