Swimming Pool – Check
Friends – Check
Ball – Check
Cap – Check
Goggles – Check
Warm Weather – Bah Humbug
Michelle: My face may be white but my heart is pure gold.
Human: Oh alright, here have some more treats.
Michelle: nom nom nom
It was about 10 years ago this very month that daddy, mama, and I became a family – or as mama likes to say, three peas in a pod. Daddy and mama remember that day as if it were yesterday; as if the love they felt that day was like a brush that painted a lasting and infinitely dear memory on their hearts. Mama says that that day was one of the happiest of her life. Daddy and I remember how she smiled such a big smile that whole day, so it must be true.
The day started out like any other. The sun came up as it always does, and I gave a big yawn as my small eyes opened to another beautiful, sunny day in Rosamond, CA. I was still a puppy then, only 4 months old and weighing 16 pounds – pea-sized for a golden. All of my litter mates had already gotten adopted and left with families, until I was the only one left. I was a small boy, and it seemed that everyone wanted a big golden. Mama says I was saved for them, and they were saved for me, and that we were meant to be a family.
I knew something was up that day. The house was in a big commotion with everybody running around.
“Someone is coming to visit today, I just know it! Wait a minute… wait a minute… what’s going on?! I don’t want a bath! I’ll be much too busy entertaining guests today!” I said as I was unwillfully plunked into the kitchen sink.
My first view of daddy and mama as they came into the house was from the inside of the kitchen sink, soaped up with dripping wet fur. Even as a puppy, I was a sensitive boy, and I tell you this was an insult to my sensitive nature.
“Don’t look at me!” I cried, and they thankfully looked away quickly.
Once the indignity of the bath was over, and my paws were on solid ground again, I was in the mood to play and impress. My father and grandfather were champion dogs – entertainment was in my blood.
There was a stuffed duck that I loved, and I ran and ran around the couch with it in my mouth at full puppy speed until I got dizzy. I could hear everyone laughing as they watched. Then I stopped in front of daddy and dropped the duck in his lap.
“I choose you Pikachu!”
Three seconds pass.
“Okay, 3 second rule – time’s up!”
Daddy threw the toy for me and I ran after it again. I liked daddy right away – he already knew my three second rule.
All that running made me thirsty, so I stole a sip from the cats’ water bowl – their water seemed so much tastier than mine. They’d hiss and spit, and I’d run away laughing. One cat got so mad she angrily raked her scratching post after, and pieces of cardboard went flying off it. It was lots of fun playing with those cats.
When mama was signing the adoption papers, I was sitting quietly underneath the dining table. Daddy crouched down underneath the table with me, and gently put a collar no bigger than a cat sized one around my neck. It had a name on it – P! I didn’t have a name before – only green boy because that was the color of my ribbon when I was born. Now I had a name, and I was going home with a family!
On the ride home, mama sat in the back seat with me and kept smiling and smiling. Whenever daddy looked in his rear view mirror, he’d see mama smiling the biggest smile that went all the way up to her eyes, which sparkled with happiness. I rarely rode in a car before, and the ride made me nauseous. I threw up two times on the way home. Mama jokingly thought that green boy was a fitting name for me.
When we got home, there were brand new toys for me to play with. One of my favorite games was running after a red rubber ball that mama and daddy threw to each other, and I’d run in the middle after it. My tail was wagging in a crazy loop nonstop, I was having such fun. I didn’t want to stop playing, but I had to go potty all of a sudden. Daddy saw my confused face, and opened the back door. Daddy already knew my special language. I ran to the yard to pee, then went back in to play again. Let the good times roll again!
In those early days, mama and daddy and I spent most of our time together in the dining room, which had lots of tile just in case I had an accident. There were soft rugs to sleep on, and I’d nap most of the day in the cozy crook of daddy’s arm. We spent almost all of our time together, just like three peas in a pod, and I was happy.
P’s life lesson: Look past the surface and into the soul of someone; you may just find a very special treasure inside. When everyone else passed me over, mama and daddy saw something special in me, and I in them; and a love that forever bound our hearts together was born.