"Every government interference in the economy consists of giving an unearned benefit, extorted by force, to some men at the expense of others." Ayn Rand

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Guiding Eyes for the Blind Puppy

Ok, well, so I haven't been keeping my new years resolution to write in this thing a few times a week. Sorry. The not swearing thing has been going better though :)

Well, tonight I went on my first super secret mission....let me tell you how this started. Last week, I was perusing the paper, and lo and behold, there was a small article looking for volunteer puppy raisers for Guiding Eyes for the Blind. I looked at Richard, he said "sure!" I thought about it really hard for about thirteen seconds and then was upstairs at the computer, firing away the email, filling out the application, fact-gathering on google.

Here's the deal: you have the puppy for 14 to 16 months, during which time you teach it to have wonderful house manners, and slowly expose it to different environments, different situations. At 14 to 16 months, the dog goes to Yorktown Heights, NY, where he undergoes further training. He's matched with a person needing a dog, or, if he's not suited, he can go into a career with ATF or Homeland Security.

Hard? I bet. Heartbreaking? Probably. But wow, what a great opportunity to be part of something so huge, so wonderful. You are helping to create something that will give another person freedom.

Max asked me "Mom, why do you always do things that are hard?" I told him because it builds character.

But I think that it's not only that.

I've been given second and third and fourth chances in this life. Screwed up monumentally many times, mostly by my own bad choices. I did have to work hard to get to where I am now. But I have had hands reaching for me to help pull me up in this life. I've had hands below me, giving me a boost when I needed one.

Paying it back...paying it forward.

Plus, it's a puppy. It's a puppy.

God willing, and I complete all the required pre-training classes (beginning in the beginning of March), we'll have a new member of the family here the first week of April.

I'm so excited, I feel like an expectant mother....or grandmother!

I know that everyone will think that this is a crazy thing to do. That's probably why I haven't told anybody yet.

But it's not crazy.

I'm sure that when this 14 months is over, and I'm getting ready to hand over this dog that I love, I'll think that everyone was right. I'm going to cry. A lot. I'll think that this was crazy and I don't want to give him up. But I will.

The thought of a dog that was part of us graduating to be a guide dog....wow. I can't wait to see how that feels.