Blind Love

My granddaddy said you can tell a lot about a person by the way they treat a dog. Someone who treats a dog badly, is a bad person. Plain and simple. A person who treats a dog with regard and deference is a good egg.

Right now, my wife is holding our blind coonhound, Marigold. She holds our pet like a baby. Not like a dog.

The Christmas tree in our den is sparkling with twinkly lights. And my wife is stroking Marigold’s head. The same canine head that was smashed in by an abuser.

Marigold’s face was struck with a blunt object. Her optic nerve scarred over. She lost her vision. The doctor removed one eye. This week, Marigold has another ophthalmologist appointment. The doctor is likely going to tell us we need to remove the other eye, too. It doesn’t work, and it’s causing too much pain.

What probably happened, the vet said, is that someone paid a lot of money for this hunting dog, a high-dollar scent hound. But Marigold turned out to be gun shy. Loud sounds wreck her. Her abuser wasn’t happy about shelling out thousands of bucks for a dog who doesn’t like noise.

So he took his frustration out on the animal. He used a hard object. A length of rebar, maybe. Perhaps the butt of a rifle. Maybe a two-by-four.

My wife is softly humming to Marigold. “I love you,” she is quietly singing.

Life with a blind dog is tricky. It’s not like having a regular dog in the house. When we feed Marigold treats, for example, you have to touch her nose and let her know you’re near. Then, Marigold simply opens her mouth wide and hopes like crazy that someone will place the food into her mouth.

“Please feed me,” is what she’s saying. “I don’t know where you are, but I’m opening my mouth to make it easier for you.”

Marigold’s internal schedule is all screwed up, too, because blind dogs can’t sense light or darkness. So they have no idea what time it is. Sometimes Marigold wakes up at 3 a.m. and starts licking my face. And I start cussing and I say, “Please go back to bed.” Whereupon Marigold barks with glee. Because there is nothing half as fun as waking Dad at 3 a.m.

But, oh, how we love this animal. And nobody loves her more than my wife.

We don’t have kids. Once upon a time, we tried to have kids, but the doctor said sometimes couples just can’t have them. As a result, my wife and I have a huge vacuum in our hearts.

Because of this, sometimes we fall deeply in love with other people’s children. And it’s embarrassing because they aren’t our kids, and people look at us funny for being obsessed with someone else’s child.

It seems wrong that people who love kids so much can’t have them. But that’s the way life works.

Our most recent dog, Marigold, has satisfied a deep paternal need within us. My wife and I have never had a deeper bond with an animal. It’s astounding.

Because this blind dog needs us for everything. Marigold can’t do anything by herself.

She needs us for simple tasks like finding her food bowl, or walking down a flight of stairs. We hold her when she has nightmares—which is common for blind animals. We talk to her all the time, so she knows where we are.

It’s been the most rewarding animal relationship I’ve ever had. Hands down. Loving this dog has changed me as a human being.

And whenever I see Marigold crawl onto my wife’s lap; when I see this woman speak softly to this wounded animal; when I see her stroke Marigold’s fur and kiss her broken skull, I feel something profound inside.

Jamie Dietrich cradles our blind dog like a mother. She carries Marigold down staircases. She holds the animal like an infant. Like a mother would.

She kisses the mangled scars where Marigold’s eye used to be.

“Oh, I love you so much,” whispers my wife. She is a woman who is filled with compassion and goodwill. And she has proven to me that my grandfather was absolutely right.

Happy 20th anniversary, Jamie.

141 comments

  1. Harold Lenz - December 19, 2022 4:30 pm

    You guys are so wonderful. Many blessed years ahead for both of you. Happy Anniversary.

    Reply
  2. Rachel Lindsey - December 19, 2022 4:34 pm

    one day
    i will learn
    Read Sean at HOME
    NOT AT WORK
    its not COOL to cry at work
    ❤️😢🥲

    Reply
  3. Judith Harris - December 19, 2022 4:35 pm

    Your writings touch my heart, Sean. Merry Christmas to you and Jamie!🎄 The highlight of my year was meeting the two of you and Marigold in Fairhope, Alabama!

    Reply
  4. Tim Smith - December 19, 2022 4:36 pm

    Happy Anniversary!

    Reply
  5. Ruth - December 19, 2022 4:40 pm

    How precious is your compassion for Gods creatures. I loved the Karen Carpenter song from long ago
    “bless the beasts and the children”
    A beautiful song that will surely bring tears.
    A blessed anniversary that you both so deserve.

    Reply
  6. Fred Klein - December 19, 2022 4:47 pm

    I have to go, now. Something in my eye. Sean

    Reply
  7. Rebya - December 19, 2022 4:48 pm

    Happy Anniversary to 2 amazing human beings!

    Reply
  8. Margaret - December 19, 2022 4:48 pm

    What a beautiful story! Our family has fallen in love with Marigold, also 💖🤗
    Wishing you showers of blessings upon your anniversary and showers of blessings to continue throughout the year! 🤲

    Reply
  9. wndevore - December 19, 2022 4:50 pm

    Marigold is one lucky dog. Happy Anniversary!

    Reply
  10. Peggy M. Windham - December 19, 2022 4:51 pm

    Happy Anniversary to you and Jaime!💜💜

    Reply
  11. Barbara - December 19, 2022 4:51 pm

    You are right too, my husband of 53 years makes sure the farrow cats, raccoons and opossums have plenty to eat feeding them on the front Porch three or four times a day. the other night we turned on the porch light and saw a small stripped grey cat and a young female opossum eating together out of the same bowl.

    Reply
  12. Donna - December 19, 2022 4:55 pm

    Sean, you are always good..but today..Marigold you are one lucky dog and Jamie you are just as lucky..Bless you your family and your fur babies.

    Reply
  13. Maureen A - December 19, 2022 4:57 pm

    What a beautiful love letter! Thank you for all you are doing for Marigold. Happy Anniversary!

    Reply
  14. Rhonda - December 19, 2022 5:02 pm

    Happy Anniversary to you both. Miss Jamie has filled many a need. Sometimes I think God’s way of making up for no children is to give you other places to share your love. All God’s creatures need a loving home. Including fur babies and red headed little boys. Merry Christmas to you all! The more legs the merrier!

    Reply
  15. Pubert Earle Bozemann - December 19, 2022 5:04 pm

    If somebody that treats dogs well is a good egg, I think you two are a baker’s dozen! Like i said about Miss Fancy, I love animals too. We have 2 cats and 2 dogs ourselves. Merry Christmas Sean!

    Your friend,

    Pubert

    Reply
  16. Jim Warren - December 19, 2022 5:05 pm

    HAPPY ANNIVERSARY to you Guys!

    Reply
  17. Steven E Rafferty - December 19, 2022 5:07 pm

    What love!!

    Reply
  18. Kathy Howard - December 19, 2022 5:07 pm

    This post made my eyes leak! I love dogs too…I love most animals. Sometimes more than I love some people I know. A lot of people don’t understand that and it’s okay with me. I love every story you’ve written about sweet Marigold! She is a special girl and I believe she was meant to be part of your family. Thanks for showing her there really are kind people in the world and I hope Marigold will continue to flourish with you and Jamie. Merry Christmas to you all🌲❤️

    Reply
  19. Bobbie - December 19, 2022 5:08 pm

    Wasn’t going to comment since eyes are a bit blurry, but have to say this is one of your best! I agree about how people treat dogs and all animals! My little Lucy can’t hear anymore…she’s 12 now. I’ve learned we dog people have extra love and attention for these ‘special needs’ companions. She’s given me so much over the years…truly unconditional love. So sorry for what happened to Marigold. But thanking God you found her and gave her a home so filled with love💖‼️‼️ Bless your hearts. You and Jamie are the epitome of what parents should be…so much love to give…then, lo and behold, God gave you a dog child to give it to. This was all in His Plan…there are no coincidences in His World!! I could go on and on, but just to add a special thank you for all your family gives to others. Hope one day to meet you all. I emailed a couple of years ago asking if you could possibly come to the Marietta GA area. I know a lot of people who aren’t able to travel anymore and would love to meet you. Please give us notice so we can make plans👵🏻🙏🏻👏👏👏
    May God bless you, Jamie and all your furry children with the best Christmas ever!💖

    Reply
  20. Vicky - December 19, 2022 5:10 pm

    Sean-like you and Jamie, my late husband and I were unable to have children. I grew up playing with my baby dolls knowing that some day I would become a mom. That didn’t happen, but my husband and I had 27 years of happiness together. We always had pets-they were my “adopted children”. My latest is a 13 year old cat that is showing signs of aging and I know that the time will come that we will have to say goodbye. The love that you and Jamie have for Marigold is so sweet, yet I would expect nothing less of the two of you. Marigold is lucky to have you two, but you are luckier to have her. Happy anniversary to you both!

    Reply
  21. Peggy S Campbell - December 19, 2022 5:10 pm

    I just can’t read your column, Sean. When I’m at the office. Tears stream too easily with you, my friend. This is so so so so beautiful. Happy Anniversary to BOTH of you!

    Reply
  22. Bobbie - December 19, 2022 5:13 pm

    Opps! Got so carried away forgot to wish you and Jamie a special Anniversary ….as special as the two of you are. Also to say I love all the comments….well most of them. Love Kathy Howard’s comment. God bless you❣️

    Reply
  23. Trudy - December 19, 2022 5:14 pm

    Happy Anniversary Jamie and Sean. Your love for each other, other people and animals is an inspiration. Love to Marigold too.

    Reply
  24. K Ford - December 19, 2022 5:18 pm

    Profound indeed the magic of dogs on our lives. This moved me to tears Sean. I’m so glad the Good Lord brought Marigold, Jamie and you together blessing each of you in just exactly how you needed blessing. It’s lovely always to read your words and Happy Anniversary to you and Jamie!

    Reply
  25. Janina Woods - December 19, 2022 5:19 pm

    Beautiful words and a precious wife and pup. You are a blessed man. Merry Christmas to the three of you.❤️❤️

    Reply
  26. Ginga Smithfield - December 19, 2022 5:19 pm

    Sean and Jamie, I can relate!! I’ve loved children and animals my entire life! All I ever wanted was to be a Mama. I was told I couldn’t have children,. My dogs have always been my children. My current baby is a rescued Bassett/Beagle mix who spent the first 3 years of her life. Chained to a tree in Alabama with no shelter whatsoever! When she was rescued, she had 7 puppies laying next to her on the cold wet ground. She was half starved and covered in sores and scars. Even though it was cold she was covered in fleas. She had fleas crawling in and out of her eyes. All of that left my Molly with trust issues. She is terrified of most men! Not my husband. When she sees or hears a man, she starts whimpering and looking for a place to hide. She hides under our bed and continually whimpers and barks. When she hears unfamiliar noises, she does the same thing. Thank you for loving Marigold. Please give your sweet Marigold a hug and kiss from me. Tell her that I love her,too!! I will be praying for Marigold and all of the abused, sick, hungry, lost, terrified, hurt, unloved, suffering animals and children of the world. You are good people, and I know that Marigold loves y’all just as much as y’all love her!!

    Reply
  27. Marlo Kirkpatrick - December 19, 2022 5:20 pm

    I love that you love this dog so much and that you’re sharing her story. And I hope her previous owner ends up in the extremely warm location designed just for animal abusers.

    Reply
  28. PEGGY CAMPBELL - December 19, 2022 5:20 pm

    Happy anniversary and may God bless you with many more happy years together 💗. Love y’all ❤️💗

    Reply
  29. Martha Williamson - December 19, 2022 5:22 pm

    OMG, tears here. What a horror story re the abuse. Thank goodness she found a good home.

    Reply
  30. JonDragonfly - December 19, 2022 5:22 pm

    Your granddaddy was a wise man.

    Reply
  31. Sue Rhodus - December 19, 2022 5:23 pm

    Well, Sean..you got us !!!!

    Reply
  32. JonDragonfly - December 19, 2022 5:23 pm

    Happy Anniversary to you both!

    Reply
  33. Tom - December 19, 2022 5:24 pm

    Happy anniversary to you two dog lovers

    Reply
  34. Stanley D. Tomlin - December 19, 2022 5:25 pm

    Take it from a 74 year old man who has been there . Adopt you some children . If you don’t you will regret it when you get my age . I just lost my wife of 45 years with no children and I’m so alone I can’t hardly stand it . Lonely in Georgia

    Reply
    • Daveywayne - December 21, 2022 10:01 pm

      I know I’m not the only one to say a prayer for you Stanley. God bless you this Advent/Chirstmas season.

      Reply
  35. Patricia Gibson - December 19, 2022 5:25 pm

    Happy Anniversary to two very special people!

    Reply
  36. Carla Ramsey - December 19, 2022 5:29 pm

    Sometimes God places a love like no other in the hearts of a special few.

    Reply
  37. brucehrogers1 - December 19, 2022 5:35 pm

    Wow! This is truly the most compassionate story I’ve ever heard. Being a dog lover I can relate to the love you and your wife have for Marigold. My best friend, Coffee Bean, passed away about 7 months ago. In his old age, he lost his sight for the most part, couldn’t hear, and had degenerative spine disease. I have never felt so much love for an animal as I did for Coffee Bean. Even when he was hurting, he gave us so much joy and love. The love of a dog cannot be described in such few words. I can only say, God Bless you and Jamie for the love you show Marigold.

    Reply
  38. Sandi. - December 19, 2022 5:38 pm

    Best wishes for a wonderful 20th anniversary, Sean and Jamie. And Sean, don’t you have a birthday coming up on December 29th? I think it’s your 40th. So December is a very good month at your house!

    Reply
  39. Linda Lewis - December 19, 2022 5:38 pm

    Happy Anniversary! I hope you have many more love-filled years.

    Reply
  40. Sharlene Mills - December 19, 2022 5:41 pm

    Happy Anniversary. I, too, had a blind and deaf dog due to diabetes. I learned to stroke to top of his head from back to front. He learned this meant to come. My other dogs walked beside him, one on each side, down the sidewalk. One of them was always with him. He passed a year ago, after living six years sick, as the most loved 12 year old dog pound rescue. I can relate to your love of Marigold. Just one note, blind dogs “map”. I was taught when they seem lost carry them to their food dish put them down pet them and it usually resets their map.
    Thank you for your columns!

    Reply
  41. David - December 19, 2022 5:41 pm

    Awesome furr-baby! Happy Anniversary you guys!!

    Reply
  42. Lily Kerr - December 19, 2022 5:49 pm

    God must love you lots to team you both up.

    Reply
  43. Shelton A. - December 19, 2022 5:53 pm

    Happy Anniversary, Merry Christmas, and Happy New Year! Much love to you all (includes dogs, especially Marigold) and God bless.

    Reply
  44. Lyn Brown - December 19, 2022 5:53 pm

    Aaagggh! That was a good, cathartic cry I didn’t know I needed! Thanks, Sean!

    Reply
  45. Marilyn Ward Vance - December 19, 2022 5:54 pm

    Happy Anniversary and thank you for loving Marigold!

    Reply
  46. Dicki - December 19, 2022 5:56 pm

    Oh how I can identify with her love. I move to fl. when I could no longer live alone in
    Louisiana we bought a puppy to go along with our other 2 golden retrievers. I did not know you could feel this way about an animal. He is 7 mos. Old and climbs up in my lift chair with me. I talk to him all the time. What comfort!

    Reply
  47. Sissy Lingle - December 19, 2022 5:58 pm

    Happy Anniversary to you both! Reading your column each day is a must and makes us feel that we have made friends with you and Jamie. We still wish you would come back to McIntosh County, GA and come in for a visit and a shrimp dinner!

    Reply
  48. David - December 19, 2022 6:02 pm

    Happy anniversary y’all

    Reply
  49. Terry - December 19, 2022 6:05 pm

    I am a dog lover too…and I have two rescue dogs… no children of my own (but wonderful step-children). Happy anniversary to you and Jamie… and blessings to Marigold! I hope you all live happily ever after for the rest of your lives, and I am so thankful that there are kind people out there who care about animals as much as I do!

    Reply
  50. Stacey Wallace - December 19, 2022 6:11 pm

    Thanks for the sweet story, Sean. Y’all are wonderful people. I turned 60 today, even though I am too young to be this old. I am happy to celebrate my birthday on your anniversary. Happy Anniversary! May God bless you with many more happy years together. Love to you, Jamie, and Marigold.

    Reply
  51. Barb Bamberger - December 19, 2022 6:21 pm

    This makes my heart swell with love for you three!❤️❤️❤️

    Reply
  52. Mary Douglad - December 19, 2022 6:30 pm

    Love to you two and especially to Marigold!
    Awesome family! Merry Christmas!❤️🎄❤️🎄Thank you for cherishing and caring for Marigold!❤️❤️❤️

    Reply
  53. Bill Henderson - December 19, 2022 6:38 pm

    Wow! Wow! Wow! What a sweet message to read! Thank you so much for sharing! I could not agree more with your first paragraph. No way could I.

    Reply
  54. Catherine Black Winters - December 19, 2022 6:41 pm

    Happy anniversary to the two of you! Many more to come!

    Reply
  55. Martha - December 19, 2022 6:50 pm

    HAPPY ANNIVERSARY!!

    Reply
  56. riflecoach - December 19, 2022 6:50 pm

    Congratulations

    Reply
  57. Roxanne Taylor - December 19, 2022 6:57 pm

    Sean your heart felt writing leaves me frequently crying. What a gift God has given you, to remind us of his presence in so many people, places and dogs. God bless the wonderful marriage you have with Jamie, you are both special.

    Reply
  58. mccutchen52 - December 19, 2022 7:05 pm

    You to seem to have a great marriage so Keep on Keeping on and I hope Marigold has a wonderful life with ya’ll.

    Reply
  59. throughmyeyesusa - December 19, 2022 7:08 pm

    We have a kitten who was adopted, abused (kicked by some lout) then thrown away where she was eventually rescued from a cat colony on Maui. She weighed two pounds (at five months) when we adopted her. She still hides from anyone but us. Not even my husband can walk by her if she’s on the floor. She sleeps under a king sized bed in our back bedroom & eats looking over her shoulders. But how she loves to be loved! Our bed is her “safe place”; she comes there to be petted & brushed, & for “cookies”. She sleeps curled up between my knees at night. She has found her voice. (“Is there SHRIMP? I like SHRIMP better than cat food!”) & plays happily with her big brother cat, Toby, who loves her gently….mostly. But she will never forget that early abuse & never really learn to trust wholeheartedly.
    What kind of miserable excuse for a man beats a defenseless animal?

    Happy Anniversary to you both. You are wonderful loving people who make us all better for the glimpses you share of your goodness.

    Merry Christmas

    Reply
  60. Pat Deas - December 19, 2022 7:19 pm

    Happy Anniversary Mr.and Mrs.Dietrich …my hubby and I are working on number 57 ,we have had fur babies for most of those years and lost our last one three weeks ago after 13 wonderful years, Every time one crosses over the Rainbow bridge they take a piece of your heart with them… it doesn’t get any easier as the years go by…I pity the people that never know the love and loyalty of a canine…Marigold is one lucky baby to have y’all as parents…Merry Christmas also from sunny Cedar Key, Florida !

    Reply
  61. Harriet White - December 19, 2022 7:24 pm

    I really hope to meet Marigold one day. Yours and Jamie’s love for her will heal this precious dog.

    Reply
  62. Gayle Benson - December 19, 2022 7:25 pm

    Marigold is blessed to have you and Jamie as I know you are blessed to have Marigold.
    Happy Anniversary!

    Reply
  63. Jim Sturges - December 19, 2022 7:37 pm

    Happy anniversary!

    Reply
  64. Marie Hall - December 19, 2022 7:38 pm

    That was beautiful.

    Reply
  65. pattymack43 - December 19, 2022 7:39 pm

    Happy Anniversary Jaime and Sean!! Thank you for sharing your lives and your souls with us!! MERRY CHRISTMAS!! P. S. Love Marigold and her siblings! 🙂

    Reply
  66. margaret A naylor - December 19, 2022 7:42 pm

    Happy anniversary 🎉

    Reply
  67. Janice - December 19, 2022 8:12 pm

    Happy Anniversary! Much love to you and your Precious family!

    Reply
  68. Mariah - December 19, 2022 8:13 pm

    Stanley Tomlinson, find a church, any church, and go to a service especially this time of the year. You may not feel joyful, but accept the comfort of the season. Prayers for you. Happy Anniversary Sean and Janie!

    Reply
    • Mariah - December 19, 2022 8:15 pm

      Stanley Tomlin, sorry about spell check.

      Reply
  69. Walter J Dodson - December 19, 2022 8:19 pm

    like. How someone can be so mean to an animal
    is beyond me.

    Reply
  70. Suzanne Moore, Boston, GA. - December 19, 2022 8:25 pm

    You are wonderful people. I already knew this, but your loving treatment of Marigold confirms it again. Happy anniversary, and may God continue to bless you and Marigold.

    Reply
  71. Sheilia Moss - December 19, 2022 8:33 pm

    Just beautiful and brought tears to my eyes. I love Marigold. I love dogs too and love the one I have now with all my heart. Our daughter could not have children, either, and she and her husband have adopted 3 precious beautiful children-2 girls and 1 boy. She believes this was Gods plan for her life and for these children’s lives, who otherwise would not be hers today. They are bright shining stars, and I see God in their eyes, and they are loved deeply. My youngest child is adopted, and I’d do it again. You learn a lot about giving by taking in. Lovely story.

    Reply
  72. Mary Schoonmaker - December 19, 2022 8:58 pm

    Happy Anniversary to two kind souls!

    Reply
  73. Jerry Lassiter - December 19, 2022 8:59 pm

    Your Blind Love email arrived later then usual in my inbox, but well worth the wait….I must say that it really touched my heart, as many of your emails do…..My daughter that lives in Nashville had a really cute, loveable Shih Tzu that went blind and it was really hard for her, but she continued to love Jake until the very end…

    Reply
  74. Jane Carr - December 19, 2022 9:11 pm

    Thanks for sharing this sweet story about loving Marigold.❤️❤️❤️

    Reply
  75. Anne Arthur - December 19, 2022 9:25 pm

    Happy anniversary to both of you, and many joyful decades more.

    Reply
  76. Stacey - December 19, 2022 9:53 pm

    Oh my heart!!!!💖💖💖💖 Marigold won the lottery when won you two! And Happy, happy anniversary Jaime and Sean!

    Reply
  77. Robert Birmingham - December 19, 2022 9:54 pm

    ❤️❤️

    Reply
  78. Dee Thompson - December 19, 2022 10:04 pm

    When I turned 40 and hadn’t found someone to marry I felt I’d missed my chance to be a mom. I asked God for a miracle. Two years later I adopted a little 12 year old girl and two years after that I adopted a little 10 year old boy. They look nothing like me. They are 100% mine, though. I love them as much as any biological mom loves a child. God knew exactly the children I needed — no diapers to change, no midnight feedings for me. Both my kids had been abused and neglected terribly, though. Those were our challenges. There are so many kids in the Alabama foster care system who would love to be your child. Check this out: https://www.adoptuskids.org/adoption-and-foster-care/how-to-adopt-and-foster/state-information/alabama

    Reply
  79. Becky Kaufman - December 19, 2022 10:10 pm

    Love,Love,LOVE!

    Reply
  80. Leia Lona - December 19, 2022 10:23 pm

    ❤️

    Reply
  81. Alexandra Timmons - December 19, 2022 11:20 pm

    Happiest of anniversaries to you!

    Reply
  82. Carol Pilmer - December 19, 2022 11:42 pm

    Happiest of Anniversaries To Both of You! Love To Marigold as well! Here’s to those who treat dogs with tender loving care! May they be shown the same abundance of loving care….

    Reply
  83. Lee Pierce - December 19, 2022 11:57 pm

    I love the story. Again Merry Christmas and give Keith my love

    Reply
  84. Pat - December 20, 2022 12:21 am

    Happy anniversary, Jamie and Sean. God bless you both for adopting Marigold. Much love to you both and your fur babies.

    Reply
  85. Carole Cornell - December 20, 2022 12:32 am

    So tonight you made me cry. Love you, Jamie, and Marigold.

    Reply
  86. Marilyn Mason - December 20, 2022 12:33 am

    Happy Anniversary! ♥️♥️

    Reply
    • PMc - December 20, 2022 4:32 am

      Happy Anniversary👨‍🦰🙎‍♀️ ~ seems like the 20 year mark is the melding of soul mates. What an amazing couple y’all are, giving this sweet baby a loving home and caring so much for everyone.
      Peace and Love from Birmingham🐕

      Reply
  87. Deborah Blount - December 20, 2022 12:33 am

    Happy Anniversary! If ever there were two more precious people that God could have brought together, it’s the two of you. Fifty more years should almost be enough time for pure perfection.

    Reply
  88. Melissa Brown - December 20, 2022 12:49 am

    Love your sweet story – you and your wife would be such good parents to a child or children in the states foster program. So many are hurt and need love. Think about it. Y’all would be great parents. By the way Happy Anniversary and many more years of love and happiness !!!

    Reply
  89. Gwen - December 20, 2022 12:50 am

    😭❤️😊❤️

    Reply
  90. Cm - December 20, 2022 12:52 am

    ❤️❤️❤️❣️

    Reply
  91. Richard Davis - December 20, 2022 1:04 am

    That’s awesome 👏. Happy Anniversary to the both of you 🎁🎊🎉🍾❤️

    Reply
  92. Sally vick - December 20, 2022 1:05 am

    Happy Anniversary to two special people!!❤️❤️❤️

    Reply
  93. Sue - December 20, 2022 1:24 am

    Beautiful said from another dog lover ❤️

    Reply
  94. Debbie g - December 20, 2022 2:09 am

    Happy anniversary to a blessed couple who are blessing us every day love y’all
    And love to us all

    Reply
  95. Judy Scott - December 20, 2022 2:14 am

    Happy Anniversary to 2 special people.

    Reply
  96. Harris M Shingler (Marty) - December 20, 2022 2:42 am

    God bless you and Jamie, Merry Christmas! I’ve been a subscriber for a long time now and really relate to you guys.

    Reply
  97. AlaRedClayGirl - December 20, 2022 3:05 am

    Happy Anniversary! Hope you two have many, many more.

    Reply
  98. Melanie - December 20, 2022 3:31 am

    😭 Meant to be. All of it. ❤️ Lots of hugs to Marigold. Happy Anniversary to you wonderful kids ❤️

    Reply
  99. Beverly - December 20, 2022 3:38 am

    Happy anniversary to two of the most beautiful souls on earth.

    Reply
  100. Lynn A Barry - December 20, 2022 3:48 am

    I find my heart going out to Stanley who is lonely in Georgia. I will pray for you. Certainly, finding a church is a good idea. There are grief groups also. Maybe adopting a rescue dog or cat would help fill some of the void you are feeling. I pray your loneliness eases.

    Lynn B

    Reply
  101. EllyLou - December 20, 2022 3:51 am

    Lots of happy wishes for y’all’s 20th Anniversary!
    May you be blessed with many, many more!
    It’s heart warming that Marigold found her way to your home. ❤️❤️❤️

    Reply
  102. Ellen C. - December 20, 2022 4:09 am

    HAPPY ANNIVERSARY!!!
    Thank you for saving and loving Marigold!!! 🐾❤️🐾❤️🐾

    Reply
  103. Ruth - December 20, 2022 5:31 am

    Happy Anniversary you two are wonderful people.Marigold is special and she has found 2 special people to love her. We lost our little Peanut about 6 months ago and the need for a little dog to love is so great in us right now. We are older and living in a teeny. tiny house while our new house is being built. We can’t get a puppy until we move. I am in a wheel chair and need a small light weight dog that I can hold and love. I thought we had a chance at one whose owner had died, but his son can’t give him up yet. He also owns 2 chows and I am so afraid they might hurt him. Both my husband and I yearn so hard for this sweet dog.I know if God wants it to be it will happen. I pray you might adopt or foster chdren. You would both make such great parents. You have enough love for all the dogs and children you want. The yearning is there. I can feel it!!

    Reply
  104. Cindy - December 20, 2022 6:04 am

    Beautiful!!! Every word and thought! Love a love story …..man, wife and dog….doesn’t get any better than this!

    Reply
  105. Sara - December 20, 2022 7:41 am

    Happy 20th Anniversary, Jamie & Sean. Love wins. Every time.

    Reply
  106. Ed (Bear) - December 20, 2022 9:20 am

    Happy anniversary!
    Y’all are living angels for Marigold!!! ❤️😎

    Reply
  107. Paula - December 20, 2022 12:27 pm

    Sweet. I so enjoy your down home essays. Reminds me of my family in Texas

    Reply
  108. Susan - December 20, 2022 12:36 pm

    Happy Anniversary ♥️♥️

    Reply
  109. Sean of the South: Blind Love | The Trussville Tribune - December 20, 2022 1:58 pm

    […] By Sean Dietrich, Sean of the South […]

    Reply
  110. David Brown - December 20, 2022 2:00 pm

    To Quote Jethro Tull’s -Wondering Aloud-: “And it’s only the Giving that makes you what you are”. Happy 20th – y’all go for 40 – 50 more!

    Reply
  111. Katy G. - December 20, 2022 2:19 pm

    Sean, your columns/essays often leave me teary, but this one made me flat out cry. You and Jamie are angels on earth. Happy anniversary!

    Reply
  112. Susie - December 20, 2022 3:11 pm

    Sean, thank you and Jamie for your kindness toward this unfortunate animal. If she is indeed in pain with this remaining eye and the removal of it does Not relieve her pain, what’s the plan?? Please do what needs to be done and DON’T let her live with MORE PAIN, for HER sake. Think of HER, please.

    Reply
  113. belinda shaw - December 20, 2022 3:27 pm

    Just a beautiful blessing…all of it, your words, you, Jamie and Marigold ~ the whole lot of love! Merry Christmas and Happy Anniversary. Most sincerely and in His gracious care, B

    Reply
  114. Sam & Ann - December 20, 2022 3:27 pm

    Happy anniversary!!!

    Reply
  115. Colleen Shabluk - December 20, 2022 3:33 pm

    Animal lover here, difficult to control the tears as I read your story about your blind dog. Recently I shared a photo on Facebook of a dog wrapped around himself and blanketed in snow to remind folks to bring their pets indoors in cold weather. A very caring, southern gentleman, commented it had never occurred to him that pet owners would need a reminder about that. Thank you, Sean, for your beautiful words that prove there are pet owners who lovingly care for them. We are all creatures of God. Merry Christmas from one writer to another.

    Reply
  116. Pamela Davis - December 20, 2022 3:40 pm

    Sean, my dad was a dog lover.He could train any dog to do anything. His last dog was a border collie named Jane. He built her an training course in his back yard. If you came to see him, you had to watch Jane run the course. He had a big swing in his yard. If he sat down in it, Jane was not far behind. They would sit beside him and they would swing. He would have loved the fact that you have Marigold.

    Reply
  117. Gordon - December 20, 2022 3:41 pm

    You were truly blessed when you met Jaime. She is all you needed in your life, and much more. Wishing the two of you a blessed and Happy Anniversary. And wishing you many, many more
    to come. ❤️

    Reply
  118. Roger - December 20, 2022 4:39 pm

    Stop making me cry every time, dammit!

    Reply
  119. Kathy - December 20, 2022 5:57 pm

    Your grandfather WAS right. So right. Love to you both.

    Reply
  120. Bubba Stubbs - December 20, 2022 7:31 pm

    Happy Anniversary, you two love birds! I just know that the Good Lord’s got a special place in Heaven for both you and Jamie for the loving care that you’ve given Marigold. My wife and I are closing in on 52 years the day after Christmas. Hope y’all are as happy over the course of the next 32 as we have been! God bless!

    Reply
  121. Chelsea Romano - December 20, 2022 8:06 pm

    Happy anniversary! How sweet

    Reply
  122. Kathy Drok - December 20, 2022 8:31 pm

    Our little Finnegan has been having health challenges for over a year. The vet(s) are our best friends. Finnegan is a Sphynx, a hairless cat. The most loving little soul imaginable. He is our baby. We bath him, brush his teeth, wipe his bum and clip his nails. We love him without end. We stay up with him when he’s sick: rock him, hold him, cuddle him and love on him every day. 100’s of kisses. I get exactly what you’re saying about Marigold. I love her too. I wish her and Finn could meet, have a cuddle, swap some stories. Stories about how God so richly blessed their human parents when he entrusted these 4 legged treasures to us. Merry Christmas Sean and Jamie. May 2023 be kind and gentle to you all. ♥️🐾♥️

    Reply
  123. Debbie - December 20, 2022 9:07 pm

    Happy anniversary and many, many more!❤️

    Reply
  124. Kait - December 20, 2022 9:11 pm

    I tragically lost my fur baby last month. My heart ripped in two. He was only 5. How does one move on when they were such a huge part of your life? He was by my side through chemo this last year and my little boys playmate. It’s sooooo hard!!! He loved so big.. hugs to anyone going through it too!

    Reply
  125. Kaitlyn - December 20, 2022 9:42 pm

    We tragically lost my fur baby last month. He was only 5. My heart broke in two. He was with me through so much and loved so big! My baby boy and him were just becoming playmates. I miss him terribly!! Hugs to anyone else going through this! It’s hard!

    Reply
  126. Bonnie - December 21, 2022 12:16 am

    Beautiful! Happy Anniversary!

    Reply
  127. Susan Kennedy - December 21, 2022 2:58 am

    I just want to hug all of you. Happy anniversary!

    Reply
  128. Cathy - December 21, 2022 1:19 pm

    The lump in my throat… So much for starting the day without tears.

    Reply
  129. Darlene Humphries - December 21, 2022 3:59 pm

    Happy Anniversary to you both! Marigold is blessed to have you!!!! Abuse to animals is terrible. Our Yorkie Capri has her eyes, but the abuse she suffered took 6 years of patience to see results, 10 years in she has decided to act like a dog. She will sit in the yard sometimes and wonder why I keep calling her to come in the house. She’s like, “Mom have you seen everything that is out here? Like, wow Mom it is beautiful, so much better than the inside of a little space!” When she gets scared she will still run to hide under the bed because it must make her think of the confined space where she was kept! Will be praying for Marigold’s upcoming surgery.

    Reply
  130. Don Michael Bollinger - December 21, 2022 6:03 pm

    Thanks for sharing oh so true Happy Holidays

    Reply
  131. Don Michael Bollinger - December 21, 2022 6:05 pm

    Thanks for sharing…oh so true LOve

    Reply
  132. Tawanah Fagan Bagwell - December 22, 2022 6:44 am

    Once again, you made me cry! I too wanted children and couldn’t have them. I treat my pets like my children. We need each other and God blessed us with that love. Merry Christmas to you and Jamie!

    Reply
  133. dmgtomlin - December 22, 2022 10:44 pm

    Tears of joy that Marigold found you two!

    Reply
  134. Linda Moon - December 22, 2022 10:45 pm

    I’m late in commenting….I have a sick kitty who needs care with loving from me, My Guy and a good vet…we’ve all been busy taking care of old Smokey. Happy Belated Anniversary!

    Reply
  135. Jim Lake - December 23, 2022 3:04 am

    We had a gun shy Treeing Walker Coonhound. She was the sweetest dog you could imagine. She liked to scotch under the covers 🙂

    Reply
  136. Renee Welton - December 24, 2022 2:39 am

    Beautiful story, thank you. Hope you have a very Merry Christmas🎄🎄🎄

    Reply
  137. Larry Holley - December 25, 2022 1:53 pm

    You are just the greatest Sean. May God richly bless you and your wife!

    Reply
  138. Ann King - December 26, 2022 8:37 pm

    I cry every time I read this. You and your wife are angels for taking this blind and battered dog in and showing her what love is! God Bless both of you!
    Love,
    Ann King

    Reply

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