“I can't really tell you how long I've been waiting to make this announcement”...that, would be a pretty cliché way of starting a very first post, and actually a lie. After all, I actually HAVE a good idea of how long it's been, it just depends on how I dwell upon it. Four months, or four years, or twenty eight years. April the 9th is my 28th birthday, I'm fairly sure. I'm fairly sure that it's number 28, but it's kind of like my own phone number in that I don't ever think about it because when do I ever use it?! There are simply more important details to fit in my head.
With all of the honesty that I have ever spoken, this feels like the project that I have been waiting my entire life to begin. I have been in love with a lot in my life, an extensive list of previous passions that completely filled my heart, but that I always knew had some kind of timeline attached to them, some sort of limitation. There is no limit to my attachment to this doggy lifestyle. The rest of my life will be lived as, and I will die a dog musher. I will see puppies born and nurtured by their mothers, and watch as their independence grows with their body, I will be there as they learn to walk and run and study the older dogs take off pulling the sled. They'll have a desire to participate without ever having tried it themselves, hardwired into their DNA passed down from their ancestors is an urgent call to own the trail. And as their career progresses, their performance will peak, to the point where they become role models and running partners with the next generation of puppys and up'n comers. And then I'll say good bye to these epic dogs, and look back on their lives knowing that they truly lived free, and they were truly happy. This is what I seek to provide my dogs, and in a way it is what I seek for myself.
I have started Freeborn Dog Mushing with a group of dogs that, most of them I have raised from puppies, and all of them come straight from Wild and Free. It's like that time that you moved away as a child, and left all of your best friends behind, except you get to take your best friends with you! Now, I admittedly never went through a move during my childhood, but flying the coop and leaving the nest in pursuit of a college degree was quite the change and opportunity for growth. However, it was conventional, that is a predictable path to take with gobs of people to offer advice and information from previous experience. We now find ourselves on one of those new and exciting, unpredictable trails that we've only heard people talk about. Some say, “avoid that route, dogs are expensive”, others offer encouragement, but our mind is free and it is very much made up. Have you ever heard people tell you to live in the moment, or plan ahead, or learn from your mistakes? Well we're gonna live it all. The past, the present and the future, here we come!
The amount of gratitude that I have for this beginning, and for our previous life experience, doesn’t even translate into english, and it's just the bow of what I have gained from my time at Wild and Free, as well as Blue on Black Kennels. The last few years have changed my life, and I owe most of my introspection and growth to my mushing mentors and to those dogs.
To every single one of you that is reading these words, THANK YOU! Your positivity and well wishes mean more than I am sure you know, and I can now link you to a brand new page and a brand new dog team.
“Nor I, nor anyone else can travel that road for you. You must travel it by yourself. It is not far. It is within reach. Perhaps you have been on it since you were born, and did not know. Perhaps it is everywhere – on water and land.” -Walt Whitman