Wednesday, February 7, 2007

Second Dog, Second Guide

We still haven't sufficiently recovered from the weekend. Graduation is, above all things, emotionally draining. It is wonderful and inspirational, but this second time around, we discovered the same thing as the first time: it takes a lot out of you.

There will be much more posted, including pictures, but we wanted to update you on Liam. We went to GDA (having first had breakfast with Jenny, Lomax's puppyraiser) and then met with Louise, the head of the puppy department. Here's the drill: you sit in the room, waiting, and she asks who for the puppyraisers is speaking (this time it was Amy), and then she tells you what you can and cannot say. I hate to say it, but it is straight out of the Charlie Brown cartoons - "blah blah blah blah". You want to see your dog. Except, it's not your dog anymore. The puppy you raised has bonded to a person who will depend on them for so much. And that's exactly what they are bred for, why we all do this.

But you still want to see them.

We met a very nice lady, who is Liam's partner. She's in love. She absolutely loves our "small black bear" (who was looking small after our robust girl Paige). She raved about his obedience, but also his loving, healing nature. Also a great plus: before she was given Liam, she had hit it off with another graduate - who happened to get Lomax. It figures that the "brudders" would have graduates who were friends.

It was great to see everyone there and feel so supported - not only were my parents and Matthew's mom there, but our first pup we raised Voight, with his partner. She said that she wanted to see Voight's "little brother" graduate.

How cool is that?

We've since had an update from Liam, from his partner's daughter. She said that Liam must be doing well, because every day, when her mom gets home with Liam, her mom says, "good boy Liam, good job".

It's such a humbling experience to raise these dogs, and to know their people. Truly Voight's and Liam's partners have no reason to know us... except that we raised their dogs, and that bond - that we all love Liam and Voight - is strong enough to make a friendship, a relationship, or even a passing acquaintance. Now that graduation is done, we miss Liam a lot, but we know he's doing what he was born and raised for, and we couldn't be more proud.

Saturday, February 3, 2007

There's the strangest excitement today

There's the strangest excitement today
if you're awake then you're welcome to hear.

I got a gift and it blew me away
from the far eastern sea straight to here
Oh God I feel like I'm in for it now,
it's like the rush has gone straight to my brain.

But my voice is as lonely as loud,
as I whisper the joy of this pain.

And suddenly,
you've done it all.

You've won me over,
in no time at all.

from The Gift, by Angels and Airwaves

We get to see Liam for the first time tomorrow in six months - and for the first time as a guide and with his new partner.

Wouldn't have it any other way.