If you frequent my blog, you may already know about my past struggle with depression. Without rehashing all the gory details, I’ll just say I was addicted to exercise endorphins to combat my disorder.
I ran at the Rose Bowl nearly every evening to get a runner’s high just to maintain emotional stability. Most times, it was Dad and I. But on this particular night, he didn’t want to go. I asked to borrow the car, so I could go alone.
We fought over how late it was. I think it was around 8p. He said that I might as well wait until the next day. I argued that plenty of people would be there. Dad didn’t understand: I needed to go.
He handed me the keys and shook his head. I ran out of the house and headed to the Rose Bowl for my evening jog.
The parking lot was scarce. I looked around for joggers, cyclists, or anyone but could barely see through the pitch black. The Rose Bowl is 3.2 miles around. Very expensive homes sit above and around atop a hillside. Thinking about all that could attack me, my light jog increased to a sprint.
Back then, I had a serious fear of dogs, cats, and squirrels but mostly dogs. It didn’t matter what kind or size, I jumped on top of the nearest car. Again, didn’t matter what size, make or model—your hood was getting dented.
My primary focus was getting back to the car in one piece. There were scattered lamp posts dimly lit along the way. I ran short distances with no light at all.
About a half a mile in, I heard rummaging coming from the trees and bushes across the road. A fox darts out up ahead. I stopped. This was no ordinary dog. A fox is basically a small wolf. I was nearly killed by a pack of wolves. See how rumors get started:)
It looked at me. I looked at it. I scanned around for an escape route. My only option was climbing the fence to the golf course. I decided to chance it and turn back. I motioned to run towards the car. But there was no way, I was outrunning or smarting a fox over any distance.
As I turned, it slowly headed towards me. I wanted to scream for help but there was no one around. I noticed something coming towards us in the distance. I could’ve died right there.
An ownerless, old scraggly dog was moving in on us. I had a fox blocking my path and a mutt on my heels. I braced for an attack but the dog ran right passed me towards the fox.
This dog had just enough growl left to chase off the fox, who squeezed through a hole to the golf course. I don’t know anything about dogs. But this one was medium sized with a tan coat. He seemed a little lopsided when he ran. I’m assuming he was an older dog.
He trotted back in my direction and stopped. Then, he turned and slowly ran ahead. It took a minute to realize what was happening. I kept a safe distance and jogged behind. Every so often, he’d stop and look back to see if I was there. When I stopped to tie my shoe, he stopped and waited. He led the way for two miles. The other side of the bowl had more lighting. There were even a few stragglers finishing their walk.
My angel dog trotted off in the distance. “Thank you,” I yelled! He stopped, looked, and continued on. I knew what and who it was protecting me. But, I still can’t believe God used the one thing I was afraid to save me.
Live. Bless. Prosper.