Submitted by Mitch Lerner

My daughter Julia recently moved back to Ohio for a new job, as managing editor of The Reporting Project. I am thrilled to have her back in town, of course. But she brought a companion: an 80-pound pound dog named Maya.

Since Maya is still adapting to her new life, Julia doesn’t like to leave her alone when she goes to work, so Maya often gets dropped off at my house. Usually, she arrives when I am having breakfast, which is fine. But there are days when Julia has to be in Granville really early, like last week, when she showed up at my house at 5:30 a.m.

Try to imagine the sensations that overtake your body when your pleasant dreams are suddenly interrupted by massive collection of fur that hits your bed with the force of a tornado and then licks your face with the wetness of a thunderstorm!

The truth is, Maya’s unrestrained joy makes it a lot easier to embrace the mornings. We should all wake up to someone who is that happy to see us. I may not love the 5:30 wake-up call, but I do love to feel wanted! 

Have a Bright Spot to share? Send it to Managing Editor Julia Lerner ( Tell us about the moment that made you smile in under 200 words, and try to include a photograph. We’ll add it to our growing list of Bright Spots on!