Girl in Camouflage

Thoughts for 2014 from Tim

Portrait of Tim and Tank

As I write this my heart is broken. The sadness is deep and throughout my body. My dog, Tank, has just died. He was my shadow, my most wonderful friend. He taught me patience and compassion. He loved me fully in every way he could. I returned that love to him. He was my constant companion, always looking out for me. We were the forest and the trees, one and the same. I will miss him deeply forever.

Tank had been through two major operations in 2013. One for a tumor and one for knee reconstruction. Each procedure caused him much stress and pain. In September Jean and I took Tank in for a check up and found out he had a fast growing, cancerous tumor on his kidney. I walked out the door of the clinic and broke down. I hoped love would cure him and for 3 months I poured my love into Tank. I know he suffered, but love kept him strong. The comfort of being close to me helped to ease his fear, and it brought me even closer to him. Tank was fear based from the beginning. As a small, handful of puppy he used to growl at me, and then one day I gained his trust and he chose to love me, and our journey together began. I was adopted by him. He chose me to walk our lives together with for 7 years, friends forever. I thank him for that friendship.

On Tank's second to the last night he laid out on the front yard to stay cool. I believe the cold ground helped to ease his pain. That night I sat with him most of the night. He laid his head in my lap and I held him while we watched the starry night unfold. It was a crisp 20 degrees and so still and peaceful. At that point I realized that he was holding on for me, and I let him know that it was ok to let go and move on to the spirit lands. I felt him thank me for holding him with so much love that night and all those years before. Our hearts beat together as we gazed upon our wonderful land. After that magical night we had one more good day together and then the pain was enough. I made the hardest decision I've made in a long time. Thankfully Jean and Julie helped me, and Tank was put to rest as a final act of compassion and love. It was beautiful and peaceful. Tank died on the winter solstice under a beautiful, old oak with the roar of a train passing by. Jean and I held him with complete love as he passed to his new home in the spirit lands. I will miss Tank always. My heart weeps, but the love endures. I admit I miss his earthly friendship and I can't see my shadow now, but I know he is here.

Some years ago a man and his friends came to my sweat lodge. The man had horrible cancer. The doctors said he was on his last days. He asked for a healing. He looked very sick and I wasn't sure he would even survive the sweat. Being a bear man, I noticed he had a bear skull with him, which I admired. He told me he found it in Idaho in the wilderness. Halfway through the sweat I realized his healing wasn't to live in the physical anymore, as his body was done and so was he. His healing was to let go and move on. A week later he died. His friends said he wanted me to have the bear skull, of which I have today on our alter.

Sometimes we have to let go to move on. No matter what it is. Letting go can be the greatest healing. Whatever is on the other side can be very scary, but when we get there we find just what we need, often the hidden blessing just waiting to be life.

It was unsure what I was going to write about this winter, but with Tank passing it became clear. Love. Love has the power to change all things at any time. Love is truly the universal Great Mystery. All people and animals know it. It is the food we crave to fill our souls and thus our lives. Trees, plants, water, animals, insects, the earth herself know love and express it through ongoing countless ways.

I'm complicated as a human with my active brain. I'm many beings in one body. A lover, a fighter, a teacher, an artist, a nature lover, a warrior, a king, a trickster, and I'm always a dreamer. Break me down to the simplest form and what you have is pure love. I give love. I seek love, Love is my medicine. I am the best man I can be when I am love. Love is the great hope for these hard earth/human times. As a dreamer I know love is just waiting to come into its full power throughout our precious planet earth. Love is where I find hope.

I wish all the Headwater's family endless love. Live fully and prosper. To everyone who comes to Headwaters, you fill me with your love. I never forget it. Thank you for your trust. I truly love you all. I want to thank the Headwater's staff and especially Julie for all you give. All of you are wonderful. I want to thank Jean for your support at our school and for your support of me being out and about a lot during our long season. I thank the land and all it holds. This land is my childhood dream manifested in reality. And of course I thank the Headwater's dogs; Riley, Ben, Jackson, Kodi, and all those dogs that are in the spirit realms now; Bear, Scout, Mattie, Crash, Moxy and the main guy I bought this land for, Joseph, my first wolf and masterful, loyal teacher. No being is a better teacher of love than a dog!

Go out in 2014 and express your love. It will change the world.

All the best! ---Tim

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