Rough diamond


The computer whirred into life this morning faster than I did… not difficult, of course. I need coffee, copious amounts of coffee. The computer, however, chirps into readiness almost as quickly as the dog.

To be fair to Ani, although she is poised with every muscle frozen mid-launch, those first few moments when I enter the room are special. No-one else will ever see them, she cannot possibly contain her excitement if anyone else is here, but for me there is a quiet hello. She tucks herself into a small, sphinx like bundle of taut immobility and waits near the window, eyes fixed on mine. Other than sleep, it is the only time she is ever at rest. But for those moments the whirly girl is still. I speak to her and she makes odd little grunting noises at me. I sit on the floor with her and we cuddle and share a few moments of quiet love.

She stays like this until I ask if she wants to go outside… at which point she becomes a small tornado, dancing in bouncy circles and grinning while I turn the key in the back door. Diving outside she greets the morning with exuberance, checking the sky for intruding pigeons and ensuring we have a cat free garden. She will not now be still unless I have to go out, then I know I will return to those few moments of stillness when I come home.

To everyone else she is either an annoyingly or delightfully bouncy creature, who definitely has several loose screws and more energy than a nuclear physicist would know how to handle. As I write the ball is constantly retrieved and placed on the shelf below the keyboard, ready for me to throw. She will break from this game if someone passes or she hears a noise she has to investigate. She would make a superb guard dog as long as she only had to play with intruders.

Before you say it, I am well aware her lunacy says far more about me than it does about her. In her daftness I let off steam, find laughter and with her I play like a child. I could, of course, take a hard line and train her into obedient and compliant sobriety. It would definitely have its uses. It would be convenient. Even I admit it would be nice to have a telephone conversation without the demands to play ball, or her inevitable bark intruding down the line. I freely admit I would rather find cheese in the fridge than the tennis ball she left there in its place.

But would she then be ‘my’ Ani? Or indeed her own?

In spite of the whirlwind quality, she is incredibly gentle with small creatures, cuddlesome when needed and treats my eldest son like glass, understanding his limitations instinctively, adapting her games and strength to his needs. Indeed, she overcompensates for the muscle weakness, is overprotective of him and Nick can barely get a decent game out of her.

She unstuffs her bed on a daily basis, rules me with a flick of her eye and the velvet glove of her head on my knee, kidnaps stray food, all the recycling and anything vaguely ball shaped. She is possibly the most inconvenient animal I have ever met.  And would I change a thing? Honestly? No.

Of course a quiet, sedate Ani would be nice occasionally, but that is more for my convenience and that of my guests. Her nature is joyous, she shares her exuberance with the world and it is hardly her fault if the world is not in the mood to handle her energetic laughter.

And really, just because she is ‘mine’, does that give me any right to attempt to change her nature? Because she has traits that can be considered flaws in a dog, that are occasionally annoying, that reflect badly on me as an ‘owner’… like barking at pigeons or excited whirlyness… does that make her less beautiful, of less value?

She is a creature of absolutes who lives and loves and gives her attention to the moment. She loves with her whole being, laughs with her whole body, chases birds with utter abandon and sleeps in utter relaxation.

And I love her. As she is.

It is one thing, in a relationship, to make those changes that allow us to be able to fit the pieces of our lives together in harmony.  Yet so often we try to change others, or even ourselves to fit an accepted ideal, to conform to what we feel we should or ought to be. When we love we can tie ourselves in knots to become what we think the other person wants… or we subtly attempt to bring them to change things about themselves that fit with our desires.

To recognise flaws and problems should not prevent us from loving regardless. To seek change within ourselves should not mean we hate what we are, we should be able to feel a love for who we are, and for each other, in wholeness and beauty. A love that recognises and includes the things that may need to change within. That sees the wholeness of the rough diamonds that we are, knowing that within the unpolished rock may be a flawless jewel waiting to be discovered.


About Sue Vincent

Sue Vincent is a Yorkshire-born writer and one of the Directors of The Silent Eye, a modern Mystery School. She writes alone and with Stuart France, exploring ancient myths, the mysterious landscape of Albion and the inner journey of the soul. Find out more at France and Vincent. She is owned by a small dog who also blogs. Follow her at and on Twitter @SCVincent. Find her books on Goodreads and follow her on Amazon worldwide to find out about new releases and offers. Email:
This entry was posted in Life, Love and Laughter, Spirituality, The Silent Eye and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

37 Responses to Rough diamond

  1. Reblogged this on Musings on Life & Experience and commented:
    About Sue’s dog Ani.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Sadje says:

    That’s love! Acceptance and finding things to love.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. willowdot21 says:

    God bless Ani and all dogs they are wonderful 💜💜💜💜

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I think we love them as much or more for their idiosyncrasies and humorous behavior. I know we could train the Duke better, but he is so much fun as he is, I can’t imagine taking away his uniqueness. I’m not exactly perfection myself 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Cathy Cade says:

    I’m not sure about people looking like their pets, but dogs do adapt to whoever they are living with.
    Over the years we have taken our children’s dogs for long periods (a sixth-month posting to Afghanistan, three-month’s to set up a new pub, a broken marriage…) It may be because there are always other dogs here, but my daughter’s mad Frenchie calms down after he’s been with us a couple of days. He and Rosie the lab had to be persuaded into the car to go home the first few times, but after a while they realised they would be back again.
    The Staffie we recently lost, Pickle, was originally my son’s, but she regularly spent time with us when he was away training staff at other pubs or working somewhere unsuitable to take her. When we’d visit them at his resident pub, she was subtly different, although I couldn’t pin down how.
    When his new long-term pub wasn’t suitable for her (on a main road with no dog-friendly garden ) she was almost eleven – getting old to be moving backwards and forwards – and she retired with us full-time. Our old Basil died, and she went into something of a decline at being an only dog again. We took on a 7 month old terrier and Pickle took on a new lease of life, although games were more of the rolling-on-the-ground variety when she found that running down the garden was painful for her arthritic legs. She would have been seventeen on Friday, had she made it this far, but she left us a couple of months ago.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. quiall says:

    She is your heart.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. jenanita01 says:

    I like to think that you and Ani are very similar, Sue… and wouldn’t want to change either of you!


  8. What a lovely post. Everything about it, Sue. The love made me tear up. ❤


  9. Adele Marie says:

    I agree totally with you Sue, about Ani. She is a wonderful, funny, happy, just adorable and full of paw love. Dante is the same. He is not very obedient but when we cry he is there licking up the tears. Or when we are under threat by Daddy long legs coming in at night, he is our knight in shining armour, eating them as they fall. (Yuck I know, but hey, it’s a dog thing.) Love everything about him and couldn’t live without him. ❤


  10. Alli Templeton says:

    A pet like Ani is indeed priceless, as is the kind of love you have for her. Wonderful post, and so true.


  11. Jennie says:

    How you see Ani is a lesson to us all. Love and acceptance should be what we do with others.


  12. dgkaye says:

    This was beautiful Sue. I agree with all you said and will add that no, we shouldn’t be changing people but those who grow comfortable together eventually meld. ❤


  13. Widdershins says:

    Definitely a diamond … both of you in fact!


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