You Belong Somewhere You Feel Free

This post is about Tom Petty.

Sometimes, it’s easier that way. I could make it about mass shootings or hurricanes or a world on fire, but I wouldn’t know where to begin, and I certainly wouldn’t know where to end. I can’t wrap my head and heart around the enormity and hopelessness and despair. I’m not ready. As long as I can feel and heal, and give and organize and teach. I can imagine the impact without truly knowing it firsthand – but I’m aware I’m not safe or exempt. And my kids are freedom fighters – ready to spread that love and that power. So I hope it’s ok with you that I don’t write about it right now. I can barely sleep as is.

Tom Petty

I can talk about Tom Petty. I’ve had some misses with him. He was always on my Master Bucket List, and not even shoved into some sub-genre, like “Photography Bucket List” or “Concert Bucket List.” When I do things, I do them in style. Like Bruce Hornsby. And Tim Curry. He played at the Outside Lands Festival in Golden Gate Park in 2008, literally seconds from my doorstep, but I was anxious and I missed it. He played out in Boston just in July – and we could have gone on our way to Cape Cod with the kids – and I said, “Nah, I’m sure I’ll have another chance next year.” And now, I won’t get a chance.

They won’t either.

Tom Petty

The thing is, it hurts so much for so many reasons. Some people are only out there to put out good in the world. Some input, tons of output. I said to Cassidy that first night, “I don’t want a world without Tom Petty.” I don’t know a world without him. I don’t want to think that nothing else will come out of that brilliant brain, and we won’t ever again have the promise of new music from him to comfort us, and lull us to sleep. Warm, fuzzy comfort in the face of cold, prickly despair and fear.

We have decades of his music, of course. I’m always affected when another bright light goes out. I’m still in denial about Alan Rickman! David Bowie was like a gut punch to the system, but I was already going through so much pain and fear when he died, that it only induced months and years worth of transferred grief. So many others loved and lost. I want him back.

I’ve never felt this way about an artist’s death. It’s because it touches upon those pieces of me that I miss most about myself. It is a growth and an aching and pain and joy and discovery. It’s like when you’re watching a movie. Some deaths hurt more than others. You could watch hundreds of characters get shot for two hours and feel nothing, but then the death of Chris O’Donnell’s character in Fried Green Tomatoes is enough to leave you with breathless nightmares for months.

Humans are funny creatures.

Tom Petty

Sometimes it hurts more than other times. That’s Tom Petty for me. Now I get it. It feels like broken dreams. I’ve been listening to him for as long as I can remember, because he was my mom’s art muse. She’d draw to him for years – up in her third floor studio overlooking the forest – under lamplight. Funny how my office is built just like that these days.. I memorized the whole Wildflowers album on our regular car rides to the horse farm. We especially loved tracks #6 and #9.

His voice is as familiar to me as my own, and has often been the last sound I heard at night and the first sound at dawn.

When I was in my 20’s and had the worst, nearly only, and most massive broken heart of my life, I made a mix cd and drove alone to the middle of nowhere Maine to be with myself for a few days. “Learning to Fly” was the only song that gave me any light in the dark, and to this day, it’s one of my top ten favorite songs OF ALL OF LIFE. It holds a higher power.

I also jotted down a list of my top ten Tom Petty songs, not necessarily in order: Learning to Fly. Two Gunslingers. A Face in the Crowd. Time to Move On. Into the Great Wide Open. Angel Dream No.4. Walls. Won’t Back Down (Live on the Anthology). Crawling Back to You. And, It’s Good to Be King. Speaking of which, the part at 3:10 is so me it’s scary. And then the part of the song that starts just before the 4:00 mark is one of the most musically transcendent experiences I know.

Go there now. I’ll wait.. And be loud with it. That part of the song touches the deepest parts of me. I’ll never stop believing and dreaming and loving and fantasizing and getting starry-eyed if I hear that part of that song.

Many of us use his music to feel better on days in which nothing else works. And to think we lost him on a day in which nothing can make us feel better. Unfathomable. Find that squishy part of your heart and put on your favorite Petty song.

BLAST it.

He’s on nearly every mix cd I’ve ever made. What’s your favorite Tom Petty song?

5 Reasons To Train Your Dog at Home With Robin Bennett

This post is sponsored by Robin K Bennet Raising Your PuppyTM and the BlogPaws® Pet Influencer NetworkTM. I am being compensated to help share information about Raising Your PuppyTM online course, but Tamara (Like) Camera only shares information we feel is relevant to our readers. Robin K BennetTM is not responsible for the content of this article.

Are you training your dog or puppy? You can do it easily at home with Robin Bennett. Here are 5 reasons you can't miss this amazing offer. #ad #RaisingPuppy

We got Athena as a rescue puppy when she was about four-months-old.

We were so instantly in love with this new (to us) dog. Cassidy had known about her for a month, and had applied to the rescue organization and been chosen. She was being fostered in Alabama by her loving foster family, and he couldn’t wait for her to arrive in New England and be ours forever. We didn’t have a clue! Scarlet and Des were sick with awful colds, and we were facing another long late winter day with Cassidy at work and us sneezing at home. And then everything changed. He came home and walked through the door, with the trick to say he had been in a fender bender and needed me to grab my camera to document the evidence. I was ready, but it wasn’t a car I would be photographing. It was this exact moment:

train your dog

I had never had a puppy of my own before! I had grown up with dogs but they always truly belonged to my parents when I moved away. This one was mine to keep. Where I’d go, she would follow. And hey – where she would go, I would follow too.

Always.

The thing about Athena is that she’s so submissive and aims to please. She’s half Husky and half Basenji (we think) and there’s a Husky part of her that LOVES to run away and not come back for hours. She doesn’t do it often, but with having young kids in the house who love to walk her, we realized she wasn’t trained on a leash either. There were so many holes in her puppy training and, of course, we had no one to blame but ourselves. The thing is, it’s NEVER too late to train your dog.

So I went to find a solution that could include us all.

Cassidy works out of the home and both kids have school. We exercise at the park together several times a week. So that’s why I found Robin Bennett. She’s a Certified Professional Dog Trainer, author, consultant and expert on dogs. Robin founded one of the largest dog training companies in Virginia, and has been “reading dogs”, teaching families how to train dogs, and working in the pet care industry helping to keep dogs safe for over 20 years. She’s also the Board of Directors for the Association of Professional Dog Trainers – the premier dog training association with over 5000 members. And that’s where “Raising Your Puppy: The Ultimate Video Guide To Your Puppy’s First 6 Months” by Robin Bennett™. comes in!

train your dog

This is the ultimate online, video guide to your puppy’s first six months and it’s designed for busy pet parents to help you get started off on the right foot. (paw) Here are five reasons this course is a MUST have for puppy training and dog training.

1 – The step-by-step guide helps you from the moment your bring your puppy home, and you train your puppy on YOUR time!

train your dog

2 – You’ll receive ongoing guidance, tips, and advice for every week of development – from 8 weeks to 6 months! And a weekly “What to Do This Week” printable checklist so your whole family is on board with the week’s puppy-training goals.

3 – It’s dog training made easy because you train in your home on YOUR time with over 100 short 2-3 minute videos. You can watch them with your family and practice immediately together.

4 – You’ll get membership to an exclusive Facebook group with Robin and other puppy parents.

5 – And if you join Robin Bennett and her puppy, Ranger, in this online puppy raising course in the next two weeks, you’ll get free bonus items to help you with handling loose dogs in your neighborhood, keeping your dog safe at a dog park, and more!

*Bonus – the lessons are SO specific and thoughtful and meant to help you raise that puppy right!

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This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Robin Bennett. The opinions and text are all mine.

Happy Puppy Training!