A few days ago I finally got around to watching the film Julie & Julia. I’d read the book – and the blog – years and years ago but I never got around to watching the movie. It reminded me how much I had identified with the writer.
While I am not a cook, I don’t live in New York, and I don’t anticipate inspiring a major motion picture starring Meryl Streep, I feel like Julie Powell and I were at very similar points in our lives before we began to blog. We were both married (practically), childless, dealing with unfortunate living arrangements, and working in office jobs we despised. We both felt like our lives had derailed somewhere along the line. We both wondered if this was how it was always going to be.
Within the BlogPaws Community website there is currently a fun discussion centred on blog titles. In my comment, I said that my blog’s title doesn’t have a big story behind it. But this isn’t entirely true. Essentially, I spent a week mentally sorting through different words in an attempt to find two that would go well together. I wanted to allude to Shiva’s shelter-reject status as well as her questionable mental state. “Rescued Insanity” met both of these requirements perfectly. However, these words can have a double-meaning.
Before Shiva, I was floundering. I don’t know if I’d use the word “insane” to describe my former self, but I was definitely struggling with some things. As a teenager, I assumed if I went to school, worked hard, earned a degree, I would be able to find a good job that I’d love and make enough money to lead an exciting life. Reality did not fit this expectation. By my mid-twenties I was almost completely disenchanted with this thing called life. It felt like all my friends were starting fantastic careers, buying gigantic houses, and going on adventures around the world. Things got better when we finally moved out of my brother-in-law’s basement and took a chance in Nova Scotia but anyone who has made a big move knows it can be very stressful. My job still sucked, I still couldn’t afford to buy a house, and all my friends were on the other side of the country.
Adopting a dog didn’t change any of these things. At least, not right away. That first summer with Shiva was almost worse. I felt trapped with this crazy animal I was almost one hundred-percent responsible for and wondered if we’d made a huge mistake. My life now revolved around a dog I wasn’t even sure I liked. I know I resented her a little. Oddly enough, what I resented the most turned out to be what saved me.
Shiva forced me to get out of bed every morning. She forced me to come straight home from work instead of wandering aimlessly through the mall. She gave my life structure. I couldn’t sit around feeling sorry for myself; I had a dog to train. Instead of collapsing on the couch every evening I had to take her for a walk. Shiva is not the kind of dog content to lay in a corner. With a Shiva, you never forget you own a dog. If I even started to wallow, she would be there, pawing at my leg or destroying my favourite sweater. By being insane, she distracted me from my own crazies. Gradually, as I discovered a passion for working with her, they faded away.
Somehow, I stopped floundering.
Of course, writing the blog fits in with all of this as well. It helps me collect my thoughts and reflect on things with a new perspective. In many ways, Shiva and I are both rescues.
If that doesn’t win cheesiest line of the year, I don’t know what will.
But, I am curious. How did you come up with your blog title? Was it just a catchy line or does it have a deeper meaning? Am I just being way too introspective and sentimental for so early in the morning?
I blame the crappy Nova Scotia rain.