A Mission Statement

by Jonathan Blaustein

Sunshine is my new life partner.

(But I’ve known her less than a month.)

It’s an odd arrangement, but will make sense if you give me a moment.

Because Sunshine is a one-year-old puppy.

She’s a phenomenal little dog we brought home from the animal shelter last month; a mixed breed with a yellow-lab mutt for a Dad, and a pit-heeler mother.

Our family didn’t only adopt Sunshine, though.

(Not at all.)

Rather, Sunshine and her fraternal, twin sister Olly are a bonded pair, and were only available as a couple.

A month ago, my family had four humans and two dogs, and the canines were angling for more same-species companionship.

Preferably dog-kids, if we could, but both of them had been fixed, so Billy and Haley couldn’t have natural children. (He’s neutered, she’s spayed.)

Thank goodness for Stray Hearts Animal Shelter!

It was nearly an impulse buy, if I’m being honest, bringing Sunshine and Olly into our lives. And I don’t think we realized what a difference doubling the doggie family would make.

(It’s a lot.)

Even on a 60 acre horse farm, I notice dog shit everywhere now.

But it’s also the most perfect, loving, joyful, amazing thing we could have ever done, sharing our home, and lives, with Sunshine and Olly!


Though NOW we can pinpoint the moment Sunshine adopted me as her “person,” declaring true love, it wasn’t evident at the time.

The first night we had the twins, resting in my daughter’s bed, I was snuggling with Olly. But Sunshine climbed up on her sister, then past her, and nestled into the crook between my chest, neck and face.

It was as if the dog wanted to merge with my human flesh.

And she’s continued to love me that hard, every day, from that second on!

The next morning, as she began to follow me around, and press up against me constantly, I got the picture.

This thing between me and Sunshine was for life.

I was to be her everything, but I couldn’t even tell her I love her.

Because Sunshine is deaf.


It’s the main reason the twins were only available as a pair, because their super-bond had saved their lives.

Sunshine and Olly were discarded at Stray Hearts Animal Shelter in a box, but not discovered for more than a day, so by snuggling together in the cold night, the girls kept each other alive.

This is magic love!

Like something out of Harry Potter. (Wait, do we ditch the HP references now that J.K. Rowling is such a c-nt?)

Because of Sunshine’s hearing disability, they told us Olly was her look-out.

Her care-giver. Or guardian angel.

That’s what they said, anyway, and we assumed Sunshine would be a vulnerable-little-thing.

Olly, having gotten much more of the pit bull genes, looks like the fierce fighter in the family.

All shoulders and chest and neck muscles.

But looks can be deceiving.

The more I watched the puppies, the more I realized somehow, some way, we had adopted, (or been adopted by,) the living embodiment of Taoism.

Sunshine and Olly.

Yin and Yang. Heaven and Earth. Fire and Water. Masculine and Feminine.

Balanced opposites, which make a complete whole, each containing a tiny bit of the other inside.

Image courtesy of BruceLee.com

It’s a big idea. And I know it sounds crazy.

You think I’m being hyperbolic. How could you not?

What kind of megalomaniac thinks his adopted-twin-shelter-pups represent the keys to understanding the Universe?

Like the old joke, “What has two thumbs and likes blowjobs?”

This guy!

As it happens, Sunshine is deaf, and the smallest, slightest dog we’ve got.

But, and I SWEAR this is true… she’s the guard dog in the family.

Just like Daredevil, Sunshine has some weird, smell/vibes/eagle-eyes/ESP super-power thing going on, and she’s the only one who barks, LOUDLY, and leads the charge towards the coyotes.

I don’t know how she does it without hearing, but Sunshine KNOWS what’s going on outside, and Bolts out the door to take care of business.

We expected her to be fragile, but she’s fearless!

And intense!

Yet Olly, who’s bigger, (and more obviously threatening,) lives a silent life, like a monk.

She never speaks, beyond the occasional sigh.

Olly has sad, fearful eyes, compared to her sister’s ferocity.

But it’s a sweet, loving sadness, like when you’re listening to Radiohead on a bad day.

All vulnerability.

(Which is what we expected out of Sunshine, who rarely lets her guard down.)

We know Olly was beaten, suffering trauma, and Sunshine wasn’t, because of how they behave.

I mean, what asshole wants to kick a skinny, deaf runt, when you can wail on the big, strong, pit-bull-adjacent sister?

When they sleep together, opposing question marks, it’s like watching a miracle.

Whose limbs belong to whom becomes hard to ascertain?

Sunshine and Olly.

Together, they make a perfect whole.

And a perfect whole encompasses everything.

Luckily, I want to write a blog about everything.

(Or anything I want in the moment, which is pretty much the same thing.)

So maybe it’s really “the possibility of everything?”

In nearly 13 years blogging at A Photo Editor, (writing for pay,) I always had to tie things back to photography.

But now I’m free!

Sunshine and Olly will cover:

Wives. Husbands.
Mental Health.
Photography. (Of course.)

You get the picture.

I intend to use this blog as a creative outlet, and write about anything, because I can.

The world is my oyster!

And Sunshine and Olly, together, represent the world.

So it seemed natural to name the blog after them.

Don’t you think?

%d bloggers like this: