To a Good Home

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It was dark outside, and I was bored. It was the summer of 2001, the year I was going to be in Kindergarten when school started. My parents were looking through the newspaper this morning and saw an ad for a collie, “free to a good home”. Mom said the seller was coming to visit us tonight to see if we were right for the dog. When I first saw him, he was beautiful! The woman told us his story next. Finally, he got settled in with us.


I loved to stargaze and wish on the brightest ones. My window was the perfect place to do this. My wishing was suddenly interrupted by blinding headlights making their way up our driveway. I ran to my dad and told him what I had seen, as he had told me to. He called my mom over. An older woman stepped out of her deep red SUV and ambled over to her trunk, where I assumed the dog was waiting. My dad gave us the pretense “Now he may not be beautiful because he is free, but she said he is very sweet.” We all watched in anticipation as the woman opened her trunk to let the dog hop out. Oh, did my dad eat his words. He was the most beautiful, graceful dog I had ever seen! I suddenly wanted him to like me more than anything else in the world.


Finally, the woman rang the doorbell. My mother put her greatest southern charm on and showed her to our comfy couches in the family room. When the woman -I thought I heard my dad calling her Agatha- sat down, the dog laid dutifully at her side. “This is Shiloh,” explained Agatha. “He is seven years old. I am so sad to have to part with him, but it is for the best. You see, I divorced my husband and it was final a couple of weeks ago. I realized that I wouldn’t be able to stay in my current house because of financial reasons, and I found a beautiful apartment that I would love to live in. Poor old Shiloh wouldn’t be happy there, though, because, well, you can see how big he is, and it’s a very small apartment. He is such a sweet dog though!” At this point, there was one small tear streaming down her face, a reminder that she really loved this dog. Shiloh looked thirsty. I bolted upstairs to my play kitchen and grabbed a sunshine yellow bowl. After filling it with water, I proudly presented it to him. He gratefully lapped it up and laid back down, where I played with him.


Agatha said “Well, if you will just come with me to my car so I can give you his food and water bowls, he’s yours! By the way, he has a very sensitive stomach, so his food needs to be mixed with sugar-free vanilla yogurt. I jumped with joy and gave my new dog a big hug. I finally had a dog! For the next couple of weeks, I had to clean that yogurt-y food dish every day, but it was so worth it. I stuck to Shiloh like glue ever since that day. There was even a point in time when I would run towards him, call his name and he would run the other way and hide. We played hide and go seek- I taught him and he was really good at it! He was perfect in every way.


This memory is so important to me because it is virtually all I have left of that piece of my heart. He was my big teddy bear, a best friend I could rely on. Shiloh was truly a blessing.





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