Joanne Jarvis, 47, who lives in Holmes Chapel, Cheshire with her husband and rescue animals is celebrating this week, having become a global bestselling author on the Amazon book charts after the release of her debut book ‘Dexter’s Diary’ became a bestseller within hours of its release.
A Cheshire based writer who has a great love of animals and is gifted with being able to communicate with them, has shared her heart-warming story in her bestselling book ‘Dexter’s Diary’ which shows the unbreakable bond she has with her beloved Dalmatian Dexter, as she sets out on her mission to get us all to treat animals with more kindness and give them the respect that they deserve.
The book went straight in at Number 1 on the Amazon bestseller charts in hot new release in Dog Care, and also within an Animal Care & Pets category. Joanne said: “There is something for everyone in the book it will make you laugh, cry and think. I knew I had to share Dexter’s memoirs and our journey of love, devotion, personal revelation and change. Dexter taught me what being with an animal soul mate really meant – he supported me, guided me, predetermined my destiny and opened wondrous, enchanting doors.”
For many years, Joanne was a very successful accomplished manager for an international company living a hectic lifestyle often working long hours. Joanne was mindful of this and waited until the time was right and family circumstances would allow before getting a dog. Any pet is a lifelong commitment which Joanne and her husband Richard fully understood and appreciated when they decided to get a dog – they had both always loved animals as they both had pets growing up. In fact, they had met as teenagers because of their dogs when they were on holiday in West Wales with their respective families. Joanne said: “Richard’s dog Sumo was a charismatic character and romanced our dog Lucy. They were a unique couple for sure - Sumo was a Staffordshire Bull Terrier and Lucy a Golden Retriever. Their connection and interaction led to our friendship and romance. We were young back then and this was long before mobile phones. After the holiday, we kept in touch by letter mostly and somehow managed to arrange for our families to be at the same place at the same time the following summer. I didn’t see Richard for a few years after that (he lived in Cwmbran in Wales) but we did write and spoke on the telephone. Richard came to Cheshire to visit on his motorbike when we were in our early twenties. An old romance was rekindled and we soon became a couple. Sumo and Lucy were delighted as we alternated between houses. We have now been married for 23 years. All our married life, we had been waiting for the right time to have a dog, we waited a long time for Dexter but it was well worth the wait!”
Within the book, Joanne shares the ups and downs along with the emotional and physical highs and lows of their life and adventures together, from; happy puppy tales, funny stories and wonderful times, through illness, heartache, saying goodbye and honouring Dexter with a compassionate, fitting farewell. Leaving a lasting legacy and offering a heartfelt, uplifting remarkable ending – this real life, thought provoking story demonstrates the transformative impact of animals in our lives.
Devastatingly, when Joanne was diagnosed with debilitating complicated illnesses that developed following surgeries and an accident, she could not even drive into work let alone perform her duties. She said: “Rather than rest and attempt to recover as advised (hindsight is a wonderful thing, I know), I struggled on in agony to work from home in an attempt to keep my job going. Yes, I had burnt the candle at both ends, but I thought I was indestructible. I did not want to take time off work, I had always been of the mind-set to stride on through life and put up with things.
“It was my orthopedic surgeon who knew me well, that finally switched on the light that made me see that I was never going to recover and be able to carry on as I had done previously. In fact things would worsen if I continued as I was doing. A complete life style change was in order and it seemed that any plans for a fulfilling, energetic work-life balance might be scuppered.”
Joanne made the big life changing decision to stop climbing the corporate ladder after 20 years with the same company and she gave up her job owing to illness after struggling with spinal issues, Fibromyalgia and Myelopathy - a progressive, long-term incurable illness. Joanne said: “I honestly don’t know how I would have got through the days without Dexter. He was by my side always helping me. He was my strength and motivation and gave me companionship and unconditional love. He seemingly adjusted his step to mine and helped me to understand that it is such trials, events and circumstances that enable us to evaluate who we really are and in turn provide us with a greater appreciation of life and what matters most to us.”
“In true pet mirroring, Dexter also had a spinal disease and Myelopathy and although we both could not do activities that we used to, we enjoyed the simple pleasures of life and the richness of time we had together. Slowing down helped me to manage my condition, listen and truly observe and appreciate the simple things in life. I would have done anything for Dexter. My physical and emotional pain were less important than his welfare; and learning of his health problems made him even more extra special and precious to me. It became my mission to make Dexter’s life as comfortable as possible especially as his condition would only worsen. Without Dexter I honestly do not know where I would be now. I never felt lonely or bored as one might expect giving up my job and stopping everything, not knowing what my purpose may be next. I took responsibility for my own health and found it was impossible to be frustrated by restriction or become down or depressed with Dexter around. I was as devoted to him as he was to me, we were an inseparable duo.”
“We enjoyed the most gentle of walks together. I found that slowing down both physically and mentally, not being glued to the phone, on the computer or in meetings all day, heightened my senses to the natural world. We no longer rushed. Standing silently in the fields day by day, we watched wildlife, nature and the ongoing cycles of change. The colours and landscape as strange as it may sound were somewhat previously outside of my radar. Most likely because I was always so busy running around day in, day out and didn’t pay much attention to my surroundings or make the time to look around. I hadn’t appreciated these simple joys of being outside. Perhaps it is only when we are still long enough to absorb everything that’s going on around us and in our lives, that we begin to notice such things. Slowing down, spending time with Dexter and respectfully observing our world increased focus, self awareness and opened doors of wonder and wisdom for me.”
It was only when Joanne was forced to stop working in a fast paced environment because of her health that she was encouraged by well-known animal communicator Jackie Weaver to tune into her gift and Dr. Dolittle-esque ability. She had always been intuitive and through Dexter’s communication, it was realised that Joanne had actually been picking up on subtle clues for years and could communicate with animals herself! She said: “Dexter of course knew I could do this.” This revelation came about through Joanne exploring every avenue that could possibly help him. She did quite literally everything and anything she could to assist Dexter because of his illness and her unconditional love for him. This was a gift that came from years of canine companionship, love and devotion.
Many people say that Joanne not only has a great love of animals but she “has a way with animals”. She has worked with animals in various capacities and said that being able to also communicate telepathically and bond with beloved pets is a great privilege.. Joanne loves to be in their company. The A.A Milne quote “Some people talk to animals but not many people listen“ is a quote Joanne uses often as she said: “It makes a great talking point and makes people really think, especially now that animal communication is used a lot more than one might realise.” The book sensitively introduces this fascinating topic, exploring tenderly the human-animal bond, Joanne continues; “Readers will learn how Dexter not only changed my life, but subsequently this led to us helping countless other people and their animal companions too. Dexter’s Diary examines the closeness of our inexplicable bond and inspires readers to consider the possibility that inter-species communication is possible and that love never dies; such a bond and the power of love can never be broken. I hope it brings comfort to know that just like human loved ones, your beloved pets never leave us. They will always be with you and forever in your heart.”
Joanne has dipped in and out of doing animal communications over the years when people have asked for her help. Numerous animal charities have benefited as a result. Everything she does is for the animals. In addition to her illness, Joanne is currently recovering from a Cerebrospinal Fluid (CSF) Leak and has not been able to work, but it is her desire to do more of this in a professional capacity in the future along with writing more books. Joanne said: “It is often the case that circumstances in life encourage us to learn and guide us towards a new path. My aim is to run workshops eventually to help others communicate with animals. It is easier than you might think and the more people who can do this, the better for the animals. “Dexter’s Diary clearly demonstrates that our pets have distinct personalities, depth of emotion, social intelligence and have a lot to teach us too. We have an awful lot to discover from our pets, they enrich our lives in so many ways and know far more than we realise, we are so privileged to share our lives with them.”
Joanne concludes: “I am delighted Dexter’s Diary has become a best seller and I know that this book will touch people on many levels and make a big difference by helping people to see animals in a new light and from a different perspective. All Thanks to Dexter writing has helped me so much, in so many ways. Dexter certainly predetermined my destiny. He was and always will be my angel.”
“Dexter was courageous, resilient and showed me just how remarkable and inspiring animals really are. Although no book could ever make up for the heartache of bereavement and losing a beloved pet, I hope that Dexter’s Diary will comfort and console those who have felt such depth of loss. Healing comes in many forms and watching the effect animals have on humans is most humbling. Dexter was a joy to be with and reminded us to always make the best of life whatever the circumstances.”
“I dedicate this book to all animal lovers and the animals that we love. - This is the book that YOUR pets have been waiting for you to read.”
"Dexter's Diary examines the closeness of our inexplicable bond and inspires readers to consider the possibility that inter-species communication is possible and that love never dies."
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