Today, I’d like to touch on something a little different from the usual. I want to acknowledge you, the Vetrehabber, and how often you are the last hope for owners and pets alike.
To your clients, you are more than a professional providing a service – you are a source of hope that things can change, even after years. You spend your working life dedicated to improving the quality of life for others – not just the animals, but their owners, too. You go above and beyond to find options, solutions, and you never give up when there is even a possibility of hope. I want to recognise that you, dear Vetrehabber, are the source of hope and sometimes new life to the animals and owners you work with.
Vetrehabbers, unlike so many other professionals, are often thanked by clients and told about the difference we make. But sometimes even the appreciation of a grateful client is not enough to help us see just what an amazing job we do, and how valuable our gifts and efforts are.
There are days when we pour our hearts and souls into our patients. It is not unusual to reach the end of the day feeling that we have nothing left to give – we’re exhausted, depleted, and our world seems to shrink. Sometimes, we feel that our very best efforts just aren’t going to cut it. There are times when our perceived failure to make a difference reduces us to a hopeless, tearful muddle.
And then there are the days when we feel we’re flying on the success of our patients; days when our interventions save lives, restore hope and bring new life to furbabies. The first time a patient walks independently. When an owner tells you their dog ran, or jumped, or played for the first time in ages. When you’ve taken a leap of faith, and it worked. Those are the days that help us see the value of our work. But the truth is that our work is valuable. Sometimes the results are easy to see, and sometimes they are not. But truly, our work is valuable.
Take a moment to think about that special patient whom you helped to achieve the impossible. Think about the client who told you that everyone told them there is no hope. What happened next? You saw something – a maybe, a possibility. And you said, ‘Lets try. No promises, but let’s try.’ Think about the value of that attitude, that hope! And the risk you took – and how, in the end, you and that patient achieved the so-called impossible against all odds.
For that animal and that client, you were a life-changer. You saw hope and you acted on it with all your skill and determination, and you changed the entire picture.
I know, I know; maybe you can’t help remembering the ones who didn’t make it to the other side. You tried, you gave them everything you had, and still they didn’t make it through. Those special souls stay with us. The connection we form with them does not disappear, and I know that their loss lies heavily on your heart, as they do on mine.
But there’s a truth that goes beyond our occasional disappointments – you did your very best. You gave that family and that animal hope. You gave them a better ending. And you gave them the peace of mind of knowing they did everything they could.
You were their last hope, and you came through. You did!
Each of these incredible furbabies and their guardians here on earth have a connection with you that is beyond words and beyond description. They share a connection with you of love, hope and a future – all things that you have given to them from the depths of your heart.
Let us just acknowledge what we do. You and I, and every vetrehabber out there, share a connection with our clients and their animals that is deeper than that experienced by most professionals. We are a source of hope and action, and we come through, time after time.
Today, I stand with all of you, remembering the babies that defied the odds, overcame the impossible, and are with us today. And I remember with you, also, the furbabies that died in our arms, who took our very best and breathed easier until the end.
Don’t give up – you are someone’s last hope!
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