Sometimes it takes only seconds for a day to go a direction other than what you’d planned.
Today was a much-anticipated day by my daughters. All week we had been planning to stop by and visit with a local animal foundation, who was having an event at one of the local stores here. If there is a way to a child’s heart is through puppies and kittens. Nothing so grabs their attention as wagging tails and purring furballs. I was looking forward to it too. Meeting the folks involved with the process was rewarding, though I don’t think they’ll be upset when I say they were upstaged by the litters of puppies crawling all over themselves in a desperate bid for attention from all the fawning shoppers.
I went with no intentions whatsoever other than meeting the people who were putting on the event as I had promised earlier in the week, and get to see how the operation worked.
It all went awry after about thirty seconds in the door. One of the nice ladies grabbed me and said, “Did you see the Golden?”
“No I didn’t,” I replied. Somehow he had passed me going out the door on a bathroom break as I was coming in. We missed each other.
The conversation continued until, some minutes later, came this gorgeous (there is no other way to describe it) Golden Retriever, led by a kind gentleman who introduced himself (I think) as I was struck by what was later described as ‘that look a little boy gets when he finds his first bike under the Christmas tree.’ Truthfully, I don’t really remember what happened. All I know is that in short order, paper work was filled out, a leash was handed over, and a new member of our family was being driven home.
Let me be clear. I made no plans. And I had resolved myself to going and being a part of it, and enjoying myself, and meeting people. And of not, NOT, bringing another animal home.
I had no intention of having my heart stolen by a dog. But it was. And so today my family welcomes a homeless boy into their home. A three-year old beautiful Golden who has made himself at home already and, apparently, abducting the hearts of everyone else around too.
As I mentioned in a couple of my previous posts it has been years since I had a dog that I was personally attached to. After the deaths of the previous ones I kept putting it off. I kept denying it to myself as I knew that I’d inevitably get too attached to them as I always do. I remember that hurt all too well, the loss I felt losing two of my best friends. How it ripped my heart out as I stood there, shovel in hand, burying them as everyone stood at a distance and either wept with me or unable to figure out how to console the usually stoic and unemotional man they knew that was turned into a sobbing mess.
I had neglected to consider that it wasn’t always a choice. Sometimes a twist of fate or timing puts something in your way and it just happens. And so it did. Maybe it was timing. I don’t know. I knew in the instant I saw him though that he was coming home with us. All those reservations were swept aside the first time he nudged my hand.
So I am sitting here watching as that wagging tail and those imploring eyes work their magic on my daughters. As they fawn and swoon and play and frolic with him. I watch as a simple little creature woos two innocent children into falling for him. How without them knowing he is working his way into their hearts and lives.
Then I smile. Because I know the feeling. And I am glad it is back.
Welcome home boy. Welcome home.