Before we purchased the land on which we built our house, my husband used to like to take his daily walk back through the dirt roads on which this property bordered. Many times he took our dog Killian with him on these walks. Always, he had Killian on her lead.
Once, about this time seven years ago, my in-laws were visiting and my father-in-law, quite a walker in his own right, went with hubby and Killian on their walk. With no properties developed in this 100 acre track of land, my father-in-law encouraged hubby to let Killian off her lead to run through the woods.
For most of their walk, Killian would bolt off through the woods, hot on the trail of a squirrel or rabbit, returning a few minutes later to walk a few more steps with the humans, before taking off to the woods again. This thrilled hubby to no end. Killian was clearly having a blast.
All was going well until one time when Killian did not come bounding back out of the woods, but rather, returned very slowly. Both hubby and FIL knew there was something wrong with her. When they got to her, the problem was obvious. The skin on her hind leg had been laid open, exposing all the muscle and tissue beneath. The wound was huge and clearly required professional care.
Later that evening, hubby and I picked up our somewhat drowsy Killian from the emergency care vet, who apologized profusely about the fact that, due to the size and shape of the wound, she had been unable to stitch it together in such a way as to be unnoticeable. She wanted to warn us that the hair might grow back in the wrong direction.
As we looked at our grubby little stinky dog, we had to laugh! This was no show dog! Her hair could grow whatever direction it pleased and she would not care! But what tickled us more than anything was the plastic cone she now sported as a collar, to ensure she would not chew her stitches or lick her wound. Her happy go lucky appearance with that stark white clean collar against her grubby natural self, reminded me of a little kid on Easter…chocolate smeared on her face, holes in the knees of her tights and mud on her dress from her Easter egg hunt, beaming at the world from beneath her beautiful Easter bonnet! So, on this Easter Sunday, as I head to church and enjoy seeing all the little kids so carefully dressed by their mothers and who have already soiled the clothes through normal childhood enthusiasm, but who are prancing around showing off their Easter outfits, I shall think of Killian, in her “Easter Bonnet.”