From a whisper to a scream: fighting for what is theirs

I’ve pretty much broken up with the idea of ‘if you do good, good things will happen you.’ But like any break-up, once you get over it and get on with it, things just tip along: peaks and valleys. No matter how good or how careful you are, the valleys will trip you up for a little stay. It’s how you recover and appreciate the peaks – that’s what matters. But once in a while you will arrive at a new valley: the stay feels brutal and suffocating. Bouncing back feels like a boomerang. You’re trying to get out but your exit is often blocked by other people’s choices or things out of your control. You are here to stay for a while. And then it becomes a time for planning: how to get out of here when it’s ready to release you or you can outsmart it. And I’m now aware that I’ve just written what could be a blurb for some mindcraftish game!

Sometimes friends say to me, things like, ‘it’s so unfair this is happening you,’ or ‘you’ve built up so much Karma – what the hell!’ but it’s when you hear, ‘don’t worry, we’ll figure this out,’ Well, that’s when you know, it’s for real. And we’ve got problems. 

The last few days threw us into shelter building, and round the clock minding a foal and his mommy. But now they are out of the woods following their road accident. And losing sleep, and losing time at the sanctuary is a very small price to pay for being there for them. Yes, I guess at Hilltop Sanctuary we do a lot of good, and sometimes the good we do can not be shared for all sorts of reasons. Sad to say, but sometimes for our own safety and for our animal family. All that good never seems to build into karma points. It’s like the people who we pick up the pieces from flourish and we are fading. And you silently say to yourself, ‘how can life throw you ‘this’ to deal with?’ but you do remind yourself of all the people dealing with much worse and you think of them, and after that you are back to your blurred life path. The whispers are growing into screams. NO NO NO! This can’t be happening. 

A few years ago Hilltop Cottage was a run down house on top of a hill. No paddocks or stables. No hutches or catios. No 74 heartbeats. Today it’s a sanctuary: it’s akin to a slice of animal heaven nestled into a rich green valley, with a blanket of trees facing it. Despite the shared stories of terrible neglect and abuse at the hands of humans, there is an overwhelming sense of love and friendship here as you walk amongst the rescues. So how does it happen after injecting all you have financially and emotionally to make life better for the most abused animals – how does it happen that it all can become undone: all the really hard work: the time & the care given to animals let down by humans. Hilltop Cottage was born from one man’s dream and what followed was blood, sweat and tears, and then it gave birth to Hilltop Sanctuary. It was the wish of a lovely, smart lady that her little house on a hill would go to a nephew who loved her dearly and cared for her. 

Pat often talks how he wished she was here now, to see how the home she built before moving elsewhere has become a sanctuary for so many animals who were once loveless. From morning till night the perfect day is set up for the rescues here. They get the food they love, the toys and the attention they need. Our whole life purpose is them. Our needs are secondary to theirs. It is a choice. One easy to deal with. 

But sadly what was one person’s wish is not recognised by the state. Her wishes never became a formal will and without a will, our world and their world becomes sliced in your mind for many. 

I’m writing this with two rescued cats on my lap and I’m listening to Eli, a donkey who survived twenty young men beating him and torturing him. All the animals here are so brave and have survived circumstances I’m not sure a lot of us would. And we fought hard for some of them when their injuries were so bad, vets told us to prepare for the worst. The worst has happened us all now I guess, and we are trying to figure out how to prepare for it. 

Life is just never fair but it never pretended it was. We just never give up on the idea that maybe, just maybe, one day it will be so. x

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