the incurable dreamer

my dreams are my disease, chasing them my only option

dude, where’s my goat?

I want to start this post off with one important fact because it may add to its relevance – I am a vegetarian.

Last Thanksgiving, when I found myself crying and apologizing to a dead turkey as I rammed dry bread and spices up its ass in preparation for its ultimate sacrifice into my oven, I declared on the spot that I would never eat an animal again.  And I haven’t.  Admittedly though, I am struggling giving up sushi.  It’s not that I don’t think fish have feelings, they must, they do, but they are aloof and would probably be wholly pissed if I went in for a cuddle.  Like what am I supposed to do with that?  I’m working on it.  Fish matter.  I KNOW.

Truthfully, my love for animals may surpass my love for people.  Actually, wait…it does.  No offense you guys, you know I love the almighty bejeezus out of you all, but the comfort and joy animals have brought to my life can’t be matched by any human.  In the fall of 2012, I said my first goodbye, and for the next two years when autumn arrived, with it came yet another goodbye.  I held all three of my pets as life departed their bodies, and it left a hole in my heart so vast I can hear the emptiness echo inside me with every breath I take.  They fulfilled me in a way no person ever has or will.

So, I find solace in Instagram.  My feed is a collection of bald birds who wear sweaters and tiny hats, albino dogs, Charlize Theron (umm, duh) countless rescue organizations and my most favourite of all, the Goats of Anarchy.  I love goats, and anyone who is within earshot of me on a daily basis has at least once had the pleasure of listening to me carry on about the love I hold for them.

My friend Caron has an equally big heart for animals.  Last year, when I told her I might be pet sitting a potbelly pig we both started jumping up and down like we had stocks in Spanx and had just hit the motherload.  In fact, we were so consumed with our upcoming pig-walk we ignored everyone else at the party we were at and wildly talked everything potbelly while mercilessly shoveling demolished cheese ball and crackers in our faces.   Even though she admittedly loves/hates me for bringing them into her life, (because inevitably animals rip your goddamn heart out, even on Instagram), she too follows the Goats of Anarchy and has succumbed to the power of the goat.

Exhibit A

She posted this on my Facebook wall.  For a brief moment, I was like the person in the text and sat there wondering what the fuck she had just done.  Her bringing home a goat is not a stretch, so of course, it took me a few minutes to figure out it was some other goat loving fool and that Billy wasn’t fighting Henry, the pug for house supremacy in Caron’s living room.

When an announcement came out that the Lavender Farm here in town would be hosting goat yoga in May, Caron was all over it, and we signed up like the future of humankind depended on it and then immediately began counting down the days until the goats.

Exhibit B

When I told some of my other friends about goat yoga, they looked at me with horror and asked, ‘So the goats just walk on you? What if one shits on you?’ And I was like, ‘They better walk on me and I don’t care one bit if a goat shits on me! THEY’RE GOATS, AND THEY’RE AMAZING!’ Then I stormed off appalled that anyone would question my tolerance of being shit on by a goat.

Exhibit C

The morning I drove to goat yoga, I was in pretty bad shape.  My spirit was on shaky ground due to the seemingly endless war I had been waging against my ailing body, and I was utterly exhausted.  But, nothing was going to come between my goats and me.

When I pulled in and began my ascent up the driveway, on either side of me were pens containing ducks and goats, and I started crying.  (I mentioned I love animals, right?) I mean I was full-on bawling like that time I finished reading The Story of Edgar Sawtelle.  It felt as though a force had reached right inside and grabbed hold of my soul and I felt happiness so palpable the echoes that haunt me ceased.

By the time Caron arrived, I had gotten a grip, and together we giddily snapped photos and freaked out like a couple of school girls.  We were in heaven.

And so it began.  Meet Caron and the goats, everyone.

Exhibit D

This little guy is Dale.  He liked to get all up in my grill.  I totally let him.

‘YOU CAN’T TAKE BILLY HOME, CARON.’

 

There was very little yoga’ing going on, but our hearts were getting an extreme workout.  We were delirious.

As I lay there looking up, my eyes met a sky so magnificent my spirit could not be contained – it was soaring, and I felt alive.

When the class was over, we just sat talking, and it’s no surprise we were the last ones to leave. My time with Caron is precious, and when I have an opportunity to spend any amount of time with her, I extract as much of her as I possibly can.  Anyone who knows her would agree, she is light so brilliant you can’t help but shine in her presence.

As I drove back home, I felt renewed, bursting with love and appreciation for my life, and all those who are a part of it.  My connection with a friend and those precious goats restored my belief and fed my soul.

Goat yoga is a thing and if you are in need of clarity or simply feeling, sign up and surrender to the goats.  They might just change your life.

Forever I will be grateful for that morning, for Caron and all the goats.

YOU GUYS…ADOPT, DON’T SHOP!

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43 Comments

  1. Oh my goodness I want a Billy or a Dale! Love, love, love! By the way your description of losing a fur baby is right on! I seriously started ugly crying because that is exactly how I feel still about losing my Speck! And then I got happy again reading about goat yoga…and immediately started googling for somewhere near me doing goat yoga 🙂

    • the incurable dreamer

      Sarah, you need to go to goat yoga. It was one of the best experiences of my life, and those little goats will make your heart sing! I am sorry you had to lose your beloved Speck, there is nothing that really ever heals the hole in our hearts that our pets leave behind, but of course, we wouldn’t change a thing, right? The pain is so worth it! If you go, you HAVE to let me know if you loved it! 🙂

  2. This gave me goosebumps, Tanya! I, of course, share your unquestioning, life-affirming love of animals. But you have managed to tap into their vital importance for our own spiritual growth. They are here to teach us (or remind us) what is most important. My heart still aches for Bernadette, naturally, as does yours for your babies. But I like to think that Bernadette gives her full blessing to my new friend Jesse, and I’ve no doubt that she does. Jesse has already done wonders for Carl’s (my cat) health and happiness. Carl’s heart was broken by Bernadette’s passing. Now Jesse is healing it. None of that is exaggeration: it’s exactly what’s happening. All animals are angels. And Goat Yoga is the future!

    • the incurable dreamer

      Aww Paul, bless little Carl. It breaks my heart that he was so affected by the loss of Bernadette. Anyone who thinks that animals have no feelings needs to get their head examined. How wonderful to hear though, that Jesse is bringing some joy to Carl’s life again, and is helping heal his broken heart. I know Jesse is doing the same for you, and you know how unbelievably happy that makes me. So many times I have had to fight the urge to bring home a Jesse of my own because I miss the companionship and snuggles painfully so. It’s hard. Sooo hard. But I need to stay focused and remember that one day after I have found what it is I am looking for, my heart will make room for a furry little soul once again. There will come a day when I will find myself in the place I was always meant to be, and there will be no place left for me to go. I will just simply get to exist, completely content. I can’t wait for that day.

  3. Ohhh, where do I sign up and how do I get Dale to Colorado!!

    And, I’m sorry, “we both started jumping up and down like we had stocks in Spanx and had just hit the motherload”. I laughed out loud, eliciting a stare and smile from the guy next to me. SOOO GOOD.

    I love that you found something that feeds your soul so, and I love that you got to experience something so crazy rare and beautiful.

    I actually became a vegetarian in the Congo because of these lil’ guys. I won’t go into it, because it will break your heart, but it was precisely because of how they are treated there…okay, I just won’t even continue as to distract from their well-deserved exaltation here.

    And, in regards to your struggle with sushi, I get it. I have embraced vegetarianism a number of times, and always revert back to being a carnivore. I am selective about the sources I choose as much as possible, but fuck, sometimes I just need some effing protein. (I know, you can get all you need from vegetable sources..but I’m telling you, my body sometimes relentlessly begs me for it).

    So sushi, girl, I just don’t know what to tell you…you know how I feel about crab and avocado. I say moderation and say a lil’ blessing and thank you to the lil’ guys before you indulge. I’m sure they would be thankful that if they have to be consumed, it is you doing the consuming. 🙂

    Love this, it made me laugh and smile and feel, as always.

    • the incurable dreamer

      Brooke. I hope it doesn’t seem redundant to you that I am responding to your comment, but it is important to me that you know how much it means to me to not only see your name pop up on my blog but to read one of your comments. I could talk to you for 20 hours a day, and I would still get excited to see a comment from you. There are certain people in your life who you hope that you reach and touch with your words, and you are one of those people for me. Making you laugh is honestly one of the highlights of this experience, and it makes me happy beyond measure when I do. And I am especially pleased that this one made you feel and laugh because if it weren’t for you, I wouldn’t have written it. For your encouragement, honesty, belief and relentless prodding, thank you. Seriously, from the bottom of my heart, thank you. For some reason, I feel like there is a shift coming, and that I am about to take a huge step forward, and the person I will have to thank for it – is you. I don’t know what the fuck I did right in this life to cross paths with you, but I am just so goddamn grateful that I did.

  4. chateautestosterone

    I laughed (out loud) and then I cried with your beautiful words. It was a beautiful morning with a heart warming friend and goats that make a heart soar (and to the best of my knowledge did not poop on me – not that I would care one little bit). xo xo xo Miss Tan xo xo xo – that’s me hugging and kissing you virtually.

    • the incurable dreamer

      I am here to tell you, Caron, not once did you get pooped on! Those goats just loved your clean hair, like a lot. haha. Let’s do it again for sure because it was such a magical morning and is one I will never forget. Lots of hugs and kisses back to you. Love you, Caron! xoxo

  5. Kim

    Goat yoga!? Who’d have thunk? Another hilarious and heartfelt story. I can really relate to losing a fur-family member, even though it’s been years since we lost our beloved Ted, the Newfoundland. He was such a character and has left us with lots of happy and funny memories. We still talk about him and recall his antics. And laugh and cry. You have a wonderful way of writing that draws the reader into your story and I love it when another of your posts arrives in my email box! ?

    • the incurable dreamer

      Aww, Kim. You are the sweetest. This was such a lovely and heartwarming comment to read. It makes me so happy that you enjoy the words I write and that you get excited when my posts arrive in your inbox. Comments like these encourage me to keep writing and to continue sharing the ridiculous and beautiful moments of my life. I really can’t thank you enough. I am sorry to hear you had to say goodbye to your precious Ted. But man, they make it so worth it don’t they? Mine ripped my heart out, but a thousand times over I would do it again. And I suspect you would as well. They make our lives just that much better. Try goat yoga – they won’t poop on you, and it is such an enjoyable and memorable experience! You won’t regret it!! From the bottom of my heart, Kim, thank you so much! xo

  6. What a wonderful experience. Lucky you. Vegan journey here and cows have feelings too believe me. Fish? of course. Anyway enough of that. This is a beautiful, wonderful envigorating post and I love reading every minute of it.

    • the incurable dreamer

      Barbara, thank you so much! It thrills me that you enjoyed reading my post. The goats made it pretty easy for me. My intention is to go vegan, and to be honest; I am close. But I need to educate myself a bit more and make sure that I know what I am doing when I take the last step. Animals are too good for us, and I wish so badly everyone could see them with the same eyes you do. xo

  7. jono51

    Goats are amazing critters. If I hadn’t milked goats as a kid (haha) I would never have gotten past four feet in stature. I owe it all to goats.

    • the incurable dreamer

      HAHA! That is hilarious and so perfect. Goats really are the medicine the world needs!

  8. I will admit, when I first saw that text message image on your Twitter, I thought you’d impulsively bought a goat. But, goat yoga sounds amazing and I want to be walked on by tiny goat hooves!

    • the incurable dreamer

      Ha! That’s how I felt when I saw it posted on my FB page – I thought my friend had totally lost it! You need goats and little tiny hooves, you do. I promise you will never be the same after a goat sits on your back!

  9. Di

    Hello lovely!
    You did it! Just as I knew you would. Thank you for this awesome post. So beautiful and entertaining.
    I have always loved farm animals and now I love goats even more!
    Your pictures are utterly brilliant and show such love and care.
    You are amazing. I hope your ears were tingling this morning when my friend Kim and I were saying how much we love your posts and style.
    Take care and keep showing us ‘life according to Tanya..’.
    I truly love it ????

    • the incurable dreamer

      Good morning, Di! Thank you for inspiring me to write about the goats. They were already on my mind, but your suggestion to write about them was the extra push I needed. Goats touch my heart in a way I can’t explain. All animals do, but there is just something so endearing about them that I find utterly irresistible.

      It warms my heart to hear that you and your friend Kim enjoy my posts so much. Honestly, sometimes I wonder why people do, but I think it is my honesty that connects with people. So thank you for telling me that, it inspires me to keep going and not to alter what I write about. ‘Life according to Tanya’ I love that so much, Di. Again, more fuel from you to stay the course and keep writing.

      Go to goat yoga some time – it is such a moving experience and you will absolutely love it!

      Thank you so much, Di. For being you and for being here. It means a whole lot, and I am truly blessed that you are.

      • Di

        Thank you, my lovely friend.
        A beautiful reply…

        Please feel very encouraged to keep writing and sharing your honest and very real posts. Your tribe will always find you…
        ??

  10. Yoga or no yoga, those are mighty cute goats! Wishing you a great weekend 🙂 🙂

  11. “…as I rammed dry bread and spices up its ass…” Thanksgiving will never be the same for me again.

    • the incurable dreamer

      Sorry if I ruined your next Thanksgiving!! hahaha.

  12. What a great post, and I had to laugh at goat yoga. Animals are amazing, lovable, emotional, spirit-filled creatures. They fill out hearts and teach us about unconditional love. 🙂 I “farm sat” last year for a family with lots of pregnant goats and one of them delivered early – quadruplets! I made some frantic phone calls, ran around like a chicken, and spent a day in the goat pen covered in birth goo, cleaning little newborn goats, and shoving mama goat’s teats in their mouths, teaching them to nurse (mama goat was clueless). It was totally awesome!! I LOVE goats. <3 <3

    • the incurable dreamer

      You saw baby goats when they were born and got to touch them??? WOW! I would LOVE that!! Animals feed my soul, and I would be lost without them. You should try goat yoga; it is so unbelievably moving and fun!!

  13. Can’t believe you did goat yoga! Have been trying to talk my friends into it for months. I’m with you on the animals–they save us:).

    • the incurable dreamer

      They most certainly do! You gotta try it, it will change you!! 🙂

  14. Sorry I am just now commenting Tanya. I’ve been out to sea for my job with no internet. I love this! Goats are awesome and when they start screaming they crack me up. I often watch videos of screaming goats when I am feeling down because it always helps.

    Unfortunately, I’m going to have to be watching a lot of those in the next several days. I know you remember my Jack Russell Terrier Dexter. We got some bad news from the vet yesterday and his time with us is almost done. He will be crossing the rainbow bridge very soon and while I know he will be at peace, it is killing me.

    Sorry if I bummed you out.

    • the incurable dreamer

      Aww, Ari. I am so, so sorry to hear that you have arrived at this place with precious, Dexter. My heart hurts for you and your family. Breathe in every last moment and take solace in the knowledge that he loved you as you loved him, and you gave him a most extraordinary life. And don’t you even think of apologizing, I am so grateful you shared this news with me. Please know my thoughts are with you guys, and I am sending lots and lots of love.

      I hope the goats help heal your aching heart, my friend.

  15. OH MY GOD! Fucking WordPress is trying to keep us apart! WordPress did not tell me about this post! Oh so mad! Ok, recovering, now to the important thing.

    Vegetarianism: I struggle so much because what gives us the right to take a life to fill something that is not a need? We do not need meat to live. The conditions that they keep animals in, and this ongoing cycle of suffering…its well.. a violation. I know this yet I am not a vegetarian. I do have strict standards. I get my eggs and meat from a local free range farm. Yet I know that if I were in the wilderness, I could not kill to eat. I would find some berries and some pond scum and make a tea. So yea, I struggle.
    Tanya, of course you are a vegetarian, you miracle angel human. ❤❤❤❤❤❤❤

    • the incurable dreamer

      Trust me, Tiara, I would be right there with you making delicious tea out of that pond scum. I would risk scurvy and ass warts rather than kill an innocent animal just to save myself. It isn’t fair that they have to die for us. I don’t judge people who do eat meat, of course, but it does make me happy when people like you make smart choices about where their meat comes from. I have seen videos and abuse, and my heart just can’t take it anymore. The cruelty is astounding. And truth is, I would feed an animal starving beside me before I would myself. Animals are so precious and I fucking love them!

      Ok, so what the fuck WordPress?? Why is it trying to keep us apart?? I am so happy you left me a comment – it makes my heart soar when I see your name! Going forward, I will make sure to see if anyone has been fed to the spam monster. You are NOT spam! You are my darling friend, who I completely adore!! ❤️❤️❤️

  16. You are so crazy, except you are probably more sane than many of us. The yoga is wonderful and as for the feelings of fish, if the animals of the wild were so polite, they would’ve all died off by now, and the plants too would’ve failed without the nutrients from their poop. I think you can enjoy your sushi – or pretend not to. =)

    • the incurable dreamer

      HAHA! Thanks, Diana! You just made me feel better about a whole lot of things, and I very much appreciate it! I can’t quit sushi; I just can’t. So, I am going to adopt your theory to help me cope with my inability to spare fish from my dinner plate!

  17. I cannot tell you how much I LOVE THIS POST!!!! I felt the joy! I also feel the same about animals in relation to people; I truly love a few people, but animals are all love and I love them all, particularly pugs and Rhinos. My 2 pugs (from Pug Nation LA pug rescue) are the most amazing beings and all they want is to cuddle and play and live a life that is all about love and joy. Is there anything better? I wrote a little piece about an experience in my neighborhood that you might appreciate – because of the goat thing. It’s called,”Caroline and the Pregnant Goat” – https://wildflowermuse.wordpress.com/2016/11/28/caroline-and-the-pregnant-goat/
    Your post made my day!!!!!!!!

    • the incurable dreamer

      Dude!!! WHAT HAPPENED TO THE GOAT?? Ha! I cannot believe you had this experience, it seems so surreal for too many reasons to count. You are a fabulous writer, and created such a vivid picture – it was as though I was walking down the street with you. Wow. All of it was so amazing. I cannot believe you saw a pregnant goat wearing a red sweater…IN LA!! Animals mean everything to me, and it breaks my heart when I hear of all the abuse and cruelty. How anyone can hurt an animal is beyond me. I would save a drowning dog before saving one of my friends, and I am not sure what that says about me. But it’s kind of the truth. I adore pugs and think it is fantastic you have 2 rescued ones. I love that so much! There is nothing better than animals and the joy they bring to our lives. They love so unconditionally and bring so much joy and the world is a much better place with them in it. I miss mine terribly and there is a permanent void in my heart without them, but all the pain and heartache was so worth it!!

      Thanks for sharing your post! You are awesome! xo

      • You are making my day!!!!! The woman with the pregnant goat now has 3 – I assume one is the baby. She loves them and takes good care of them – they all have sweaters. We also have a couple of pigs in our neighborhood who get walks and one cat that looks like a mini leopard. Hollywood can be an interesting place. I am super glad I found your blog; I really enjoy it and I love your voice and perspective! I hope you keep writing and writing and writing!!! xoxo

        • the incurable dreamer

          Are you serious?? I am practically weeping right now because this news makes me so happy!! Goats have captured my heart because they are such soulful and magnificent creatures, so I am thrilled to hear that she has three goats and takes good care of them! AND THEY ALL HAVE SWEATERS?!?! I’m dying. YAY! Thank you so much, for the beautiful compliment, it means a whole heck of a lot! As soon as I read your blog, I knew you were one of my people, and I too am so glad I found you!! I will keep writing and writing; you promise me you will do the same! The world needs more people like you! This is gonna be super fun! xo

          • You inspired me to walk down the Goat’s street – unfortunately, they weren’t out, but I am going to keep on the lookout for them. I am also going to share your blog on Facebook and Twitter – it is so great and needs to be read by everyone.

          • the incurable dreamer

            Oh darn!! If you walk down there again sometime and happen to see them, please let me know how they are doing!! You are the absolute sweetest – thank you so much for saying that and sharing my blog! I appreciate that more than you know. If you look on my blog, on the right hand side I have a section for ‘cool kids I follow’ and there are 4 blogs I have been planning on adding (as soon as I figure out how to get the correct code) and your blog is one of them!! You really are incredible and I am so thankful our paths have crossed! ?

  18. You are lovely and I am also really glad our paths have crossed! Goat sightings are rare, but if I do see them I will have my camera ready and post a picture. xo

  19. Ok, adding to wish list for bda: 1 goat

  20. If you’re into goats, head straight for Greece. They have tons of them. Donkeys too. Amazing creatures.

    • the incurable dreamer

      YES PLEASE!!! Looks like I am booking my next trip to Greece!! ?And I adore donkeys as well! Fun!

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