Like so many others, I am incredibly grateful for Beit T’Shuvah. It took me in when I had no other place to go. After a long journey, I arrived in Los Angeles homeless and frightened. I had no idea what my next move would be, or should be. Then I found myself at BTS.
At first, I was skittish when I saw so many residents; how would I know who to be friendly with? But I settled in; although there were many residents – especially men – that I wanted to avoid, I found that everyone introduced themself and seemed happy that I had come to Beit T’Shuvah. Although my journey was arduous, I found a community here. Every day I find myself a bit more comfortable. What is it that Rabbi Mark always says? Just one grain of sand better.
I came from China, where I faced a destiny so horrible it is beyond words. Suffice to say, I was faced with becoming part of the meat trade, where I might have been tortured before being eaten! (The industry likes tender dog meat, and some customers feel that dogs are especially beneficial to their health.)
Thanks to some caring Americans, I was rescued, flown to Los Angeles, and taken in by an organization that helps dogs avoid that fate. Although I was happy to see new friends in the same circumstance, the arrangement was only temporary.
Then Chaya came to the rescue. She adopted me from the rescue foundation and now I am a certified emotional support dog and a proud member of the Beit T’Shuvah community. I am still skittish; my early trauma seems to have colored my worldview. Happily, I am warming up to the people around me. I have fallen in love with Chaya and she with me; I like to think that I am providing the help she needs (at least, she tells me so). And I am on my way to becoming a service dog!
I have grown to like squeaky plush toys. I am slowly allowing people to touch me and giving kisses on their hands. As I said, I get one grain of sand more relaxed every day. I especially like the atmosphere in the Creative Matters office and am getting friendly with everyone there.
Again, I am very grateful to live at Beit T’Shuvah, which made a one-time exception to the rules to allow me to be here. With a little more time and lots of love, I look forward to the day the fear abates and I am comfortable with all. And I look forward to (slowly and calmly) meeting you.
For more information on adopting a rescued animal, including from the meat trade, please contact the Animal Hope and Wellness Foundation at https://animalhopeandwellness.org.