Today we did something we swore we'd never do again. We got a new puppy. However, this wasn't actually intentional. On Friday, my 2 oldest daughters, Bailey and Brandee, went for a walk around the neighborhood. Now, our neighborhood isn't like most in suburbia. We live in a very rural area where the minimum lot size is 2.5 acres. So as the girls were walking down a dirt road they saw this little dog sitting in the tall weeds along the fence line. They immediately came running home to tell me that the dog was there. They had tried to approach him, but he was so scared that he just growled. They begged me to let them bring him home. Not knowing what his story was, I told them to leave him there just in case someone either came for him or he decided to go home. So for the next 2 days, every time I drove down the road I looked to see if he was still there. And of course the poor little guy was.
At this point, I have to tell you, I really don't like pets. We have horses, chickens, and the occasional pig and cow, but I'm just not a fan of "pets". As I was growing up, we had an overabundance of pets. At one point, we had 13 cats living in our house. My sister and I secretly called our mom the "crazy cat lady". I was young enough not to really remember (or notice) the mess they made, but someone was constantly cleaning up after them. When I left home, I vowed there would be no more pets.
I have been blessed with the most tenderhearted kids ever. They just can't stand to see anything suffer. I've watched them try to save newborn kittens who were abandoned by their mother and try to nurse birds back to health after cat attacks. So for the sake of their sweet, nurturing ways, I have let them have a few cats that live outside.
Fast forward to today. We were on our way to church and checked on the poor thing as we drove by. Sure enough, he was still huddled by the fence post. I can't imagine how lonely,scared and hungry he must have been by then, not to mention thirsty. We stopped to show him to my hubby, Chad. My girls begged and begged to take him home. Surprisingly, Chad agreed.
On the way home from church, we stopped again to try to coax him to follow us home. After sitting in the same spot for days waiting for a master that was never coming back, he was eager for some love and companionship. He let Colton, my oldest son, pick him up and carry him home.
After 2 hot dogs and a large bowl of water, he was running around, jumping and playing with the kids. I would dare say that they have imprinted on each others hearts. Its actually been very sweet to watch.
So where is the joy in something I really don't like? It's in watching the look on my kid's faces, hearing them laugh as they play with Sparky, and realizing that raising nurturing and loving children is so much more important than what I like. It is in having something be so much more important than getting what I want. It is in rescuing one of God's creatures from a slow and painful death. But it is mostly about love, without which my life would be empty. And my children have given me more love than any heart could ever hold.
This is Sparky. He appears to be at least part terrier, and is probably about 6 months old. You can see why my kids wanted to bring him home!