I woke with great enthusiasm, fresh inspiration and strategies regarding my revised theme for today’s panel honoring Women’s History Month. Then I opened the bedroom door. Nothing appeared out of place as I set about the morning ritual – scratching Pepper‘s belly, letting Salt out for her morning constitutional – until I opened the front door. At that moment, a neighbor was making his way to his car. All hell broke loose. Pepper lunched at his pant legs, Salt dragged me outside. I called, they did not retreat. For a few moments, things got worse.
Once peace was restored and our neighbor was on his way, I tried to characterize what I was feeling. I could not. Tears did not fall. Anger did not erupt. Something closer, more familiar, like resignation was the culprit. I tried to reclaim the interest in the panel. Tried to think of a fitting punishment for dogs protecting who they love. All I came up with was this letter of apology.
4 March 2011
Esteemed Neighbor with the Red Mustang,
There are no words to express my profound remorse for my pets’ behavior this morning. Timing and insufficient training conspired to change the tenor of the start of your day. I can only hope that it got better from that moment forward.
I want to extend my heartfelt apology, and promise you that I will redouble our efforts at obedience training so that you and all our neighbors may continue to enjoy the peace and sanctity of home.
Then, I received these words in an email. They come from a devotional entitled “A Space For Grace” prepared by national radio host, Lysa TerKeurst.
The blessing in these broken circumstances can be found in the way it tills the ground of my heart.
There is no argument or apology in them. Only acceptance, gratitude, and the taking of the next step. After you, Lord.
Footnote: Panel went well despite / because of my transparency. Husband did not like the words of apology, so cookies were left on mustang’s hood.