When Hannah Met Henry
The last thing in the world we needed was another dog. Hannah, our beloved golden retriever was finally becoming the perfect pet. It took five years of rambunctious behavior but our patience had paid off. She now goes most everywhere with us. She sits in the back seat of the Explorer as if she's our child. In a sense she is. We rarely need a leash for she never leaves Bill's side, ever the faithful fur kid.
For months we've been thwarting our daughters unanimous opinion that we should get another dog. After Holly, our Christmas puppy from 1995, was put to sleep, Bill was adamant that we did not want another dog - Hannah was enough. Besides, life was just beginning to calm down, we were enjoying a home with one canine companion.
And then, something unexplainable happened. We found ourselves looking through pet store windows, lingering awhile to watch the puppies in full play mode. We'd watch the commercial of adorable retriever puppies tumbling over each other and in unison we'd both sigh, "Oh aren't they so cute!"
We found ourselves reminiscing about when Hannah was a blue eyed, tiny bundle of golden fluff. She was also a Christmas gift, when Jaime brought her home from college. Back then Holly was the regal retriever in residence and wanted no part of Hyper Hannah. They eventually accepted each other. When Holly passed over to the Rainbow Bridge Hannah moved up to the ranks of queen of her master's castle.
How could it be that five years have passed since Hannah came into our lives when it seems like only yesterday?
The girls must have sensed the nostalgia was creating a sentimental soft spot, for when talks of gifting us with a puppy resumed Bill was receptive to the idea. It didn't take me long to get excited about the new addition to the family. I wonder if this is, perhaps, a side effect to the empty nest life style. In between the kids getting married and anxiously waiting for news of impending grandchildren, maybe the pitter- patter of tiny paw prints can fill the silence til the pitter-patter of grandchildren fills the void.
Last Sunday, Bill and I were busy puppy proofing the backyard while Jaime and husband Dan went to see a man about a dog. As we wrapped chicken wire around the new wrought iron fence I started to get cold feet. Did I really want to start all over again with the chewing, the late night whining and the constant eyes in the back of our heads to be ready to run the pup outside each and every time his nose so much as sniffed the floor? Were we nuts to take on the challenge when it would mean that Hannah would also have to adjust to another 4 legged tiny, teething terror nipping at her heels?
Before I could give credence to any lingering doubts, I looked up to see Jaime and Dan walking down the gangway toward the backyard. The cutest golden retriever puppy was hopping alongside them. And, in that moment, I knew that Henry had found his forever home. Hannah may not be as enthusiastic as we are but, in time, she'll come around. It is now hurricane Henry, a name passed down from a now calm and docile Hannah. As I watch him tear around the yard with lightening speed, to see all and do all - I take a peek at Hannah, in hiding, and I can't help but wonder - Where does the time go?