Back in January Ryan and I began our discussion on whether or not we were ready to get a second dog. Well, it wasn't really a discussion, it was more like an argument. The kids and I thought we were ready, and Finchy agreed. Ryan said he was not ready, and he gave a really bad reason why (leading to the reason for the argument). Eventually the truth came out, and we backed off of the idea of getting a second dog.
The last day in February, Ryan asked me what I wanted for my birthday. I told him that I wanted a dog for my birthday, but since he wasn't ready for one, I needed time to think. He told me he was ready to get another dog, but it needed to be 5 years old or younger. Thursday, before I picked Noah up from preschool, I did a quick search on Petfinder.com. I wanted another Golden Retriever, but the Golden Retriever rescues in IL won't adopt to you if you have children under the age of 5, so I was hoping to find one on Petfinder. Sure enough, a couple popped up. One of them fit Ryan's requirements. He was exactly 5 years old. I immediately sent Ryan the link, and he agreed that we could look into getting him. I emailed the rescue place and his foster mom contacted me. She said he was great with children and other dogs. He did have one problem. He was overweight. He tipped the scale at 95 pounds- that's a big golden. I filled out the online adoption application on Friday and the 3 people I listed as our references (non-family) were immediately contacted by the lady. Friday night she called me and we set up a meeting for Sunday after church.
Ryan was excited. I haven't seen him this excited in a long time. We didn't tell the kids about the pending adoption. Sunday we told the kids about the visit. Noah got super excited. Just as I was getting ready to serve for the second service, my phone rang. It was Ryan. I knew immediately from his voice that something was wrong. Apparently the rescue had allowed another family to adopt the dog on Saturday. All our excited-ness and happy feelings came crashing down around us. At lunch time we broke the sad news to the kids. Noah was upset. At that point, I didn't want to look for another dog, but Ryan wanted me to get back on Petfinder and search. So, during naptime I did. I didn't really find a dog that fit our family like this other dog did.
Around 3 o'clock the phone rang. It was the same lady from the rescue. Apparently the family from Saturday decided that he was too big to handle and had returned him to the rescue. She wanted to know if we were still interested. I told her we were definitely interested. Then she asked if she could bring him down the same day to meet us and I agreed to that. I called Ryan up (he was running errands) and gave him the news. He immediately perked up. I wasn't letting myself get excited, because I didn't want to be let down again.
Around 4 o'clock the doorbell rang. I opened the door and there was the biggest golden retriever I have ever seen. We invited them in and let Finch and him get to know each other. They got along pretty well. The kids loved him immediately, and Ryan hasn't stopped smiling yet. I haven't seen Ryan smile like this since before we got Chili Dawg's cancer news.
So, meet Buster. He's 95 pounds of Golden Retriever love, and I think he's here to help us heal. Not bad for a birthday present, huh?