Saturday, November 3, 2012

No Greater Love

I'm sure those of you that are believers and have read the bible know the verse that Jesus said when he mentioned that "no greater love than a man has than to lay down his life before his friends". I believe Jesus was quoting that as he performed the last supper before he was crucified. Not to say that this will happen to me or anyone else in the future, but that phrase greater love has rang true with me this past week.

Over the last couple of months, my immediate family (Me, Stacie, and our dogs) have gone through some changes. Labor day weekend, we made the decision to adopt a new pet for Corkie. We went through the Humane Society in Irving, where we looked at a couple of dogs that caught our attention, then we saw one that fit the bill, or at least we thought. When Stacie and I first arrived at the shelter, we came across a cute little pup, Pekinese(sp) breed named Odie. Him and Corkie got along great. We decided as a family, that not only would it be our decision, but Corkie's as well. Strange as it may sound, we ultimately wanted a new pet so she could have a play pal. It saddened us a lot of times when we would go visit family and other friends that had pets, and then come home to see Corkie so sad and lonely after a long day of playing with the others. So, as we took went to the shelter, Corkie went too. This facility has a fenced in yard that you can take your potential pet to and use as a grounds to get to know them, and see how they react. Well, at first, Odie and Corkie played hard and wore each other out. Just what we needed. Long story short, we took him home that night as part of the adoption process, then take him back later to get him neutered. Well, that first night and next day was a disaster. Corkie was not happy because Odie kept trying to dominate her by "humping" and even growling at her. There were a few times she showed teeth and was forceful a few times. Sorry pet lovers, but Corkie is my girl, and this daddy looks out for her well being. Stacie and I agreed to send him back and they understood.

On the other hand, that first day while we were looking and found Odie, we had also come across another pet that look to be an interesting candidate to take home as well. We had asked the staff at the shelter if there were any Shelties that we could look at. There were 2 available. One was an 11 year old on her last leg. OK!! Who does that to a dog? At that age, why do this to them? Then dog #2, was a sheltie mix. One look at this one, and I personally thougth, this could be it. A female, blue heeler, shetlie mix, almost same shape and size as Corkie, and just 3 years old. Maybe younger. Her name was Latte, as in Starbucks. At first, Corkie and Latte didn't take well to each, and hardly did anything together. Initially, Stacie had said that she didn't want that. I thought at first, "give them time". This made us decide on Odie first before bringing him back. When I brought him back, I told Stacie, we should consider bringing Latte home. I had that "connection" that I haven't had with a dog since my first dog Joey that I had from when I was 9 till he passed when I was 23. Something inside of me said to bring her home. Stacie had agreed, so with that in consideration, I asked the staff if Latte was still available. $50 later, she was ours. It has taken some time, but after the first week of getting to know her, and her getting to trust us, Latte has become a full fledged member of our household. Her and Corkie are literally like sisters. They play, they fuss, they look out for each other. In fact, one time, I had taken them to the dog park by my house, another dog attacked Corkie, and Latte did the sister thing and went after the dog that first attacked Corkie. Everyday is a joy to come home and see them be surprised to see me or Stacie. Nothing pleases me more to see that expression in a dog. Latte's previous owners were either abusive to her, and very badly mistreated her. To this day, she still gets defensive when some people come up and want to pet her. Again, why the cruelty people? Why?

As luck would have it, as we were registering Latte with our pet clinic and getting her on our pet insurance plan, the vetinarian diagnosed Latte with HEARTWORM. It's an unfortunate mishap, but nonetheless, Latte is our other baby girl, and we as parents are doing what we can to keep her healthy. No greater love...After the first chest xray, we discovered that she is not as bad off as we thought it was. Our goal is by January to have her treatment completed and her well on the way to recovery. No greater love that we have for her and her sister that we do what we can to save them. These are my babies....

........Which now brings me this! SPEAKING of babies, my wife Stacie, who I have been blessed to be married to for 4 years now, has announced that we in fact are expecting a baby of our own. This now dad to be could not be anymore excited. My friends and other family members have all expressed that there is nother greater on this earth than to be a parent. In 8 more months or so, I can agree with that. This process took me and Stacie and year of planning, and mostly a great time of praying over this. As we are reaching our mid thirties in the next couple of years, and with Stacie and I planning on finishing our education(s) and move on to bigger, better careers, we realized we would be knocking on 40's doorstep before we ever had children. It came down to humbled decision that is was "now or never" and never wasn't an option. As we occaisonally bought a package of bottles here, pacifiers there, and even once a package of diapers, I realized it wasn't about me and her anymore, and that it wasn't going to be. I was cool with that. So, this past Spring, we started trying. After 5 months, and almost giving up, mommy to be gave me the best surprise ever two weeks ago. The idea of me being a dad has been something I have always imagined being, but never gave it much thought. When someone like myself marries at age 28 to a spouse that was 29 at the time, it didn't really occur to us. Or at least in the beginning of our marriage. Back in the Spring when Stacie's family laid her sister, Brenda to rest, the family came together and one relative asked us if we were ever to consider having children. It was that ride home that got us spinning our wheels about it. No sooner that when we got home till here recently, those wheels kept spinning, and haven't stopped!

These last couple of months have been a blessing to me. From the time we adopted our most recent dog, Latte, to now knowing that I am going to become a father, life is good for me. The little things that show me how to express a great love, have been the greatest gift I could ever receive. More to follow in the months ahead as we prepare for the latest edition to come into my household.