Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Meant To Be Together

Kyra was never supposed to be my puppy. 

This simple truth was something I was reminded of the other day as I logged on to fill out her monthly report. Actually, my co-raisers and I applied for a male puppy and were matched up with Kyra's brother, Keaton. Due to a very last minute bout with puppy tummy aches, Kyra was placed on the road to Phoenix in his place. 

Baby Kyra gives Hero a kiss on the nose before he gets on the puppy truck. 
She is so thoughtful.

Thinking about being a different puppy's raiser is rather unsettling. Although I am sure that Keaton is just as wonderful of a dog as Kyra is, life without Kyra is something I don't want to consider.

I feel like each puppy we are given to raise has it's own special duty. Although the puppy is OUR charge and OUR responsibility, I am pretty sure that the pup doesn't see it that way. I think that the puppies see us as their first human project. I know it sounds crazy, but these dogs know that they were born to change lives. And whose lives do they change first? Those of their puppy raisers.

My first puppy, Hero, taught me perseverance, selflessness and responsibility, and was always there for me emotionally. Kyra has shown me true patience, unconditional love and bravery. It's amazing what you can learn from a dog. Each have their own unique personality and their own special place in our lives.   

(Okay, so I know this is a little different than my usual blog, but bear with me here – this is going to get deep.)

I think that this whole principle has taught me a lot about human relationships, too. Just like each puppy has its own purpose in its raiser’s life, each human companion we come across has its time and place as well. The puppies that we raise form us into who we are, develop additional connections with those around us, and never fail to throw in a life lesson on the side.

Relationships do the exact same thing.

Long story short, there is a reason for everything.

When I got the call that I wouldn’t be receiving Keaton, I was very nervous. I wasn’t sure how I would do with a female puppy and overall I was just stressed that plans had changed so last minute. I didn’t know it at the time, but Kyra was the exact puppy I needed at this time in my life. Even though raising her is full of its ups and downs, without her I wouldn’t be the same, I wouldn’t have met the people I have this semester, I wouldn’t have taken the paths that I’ve gone down since last May.

Why would I choose to change a thing?

Well, I wouldn’t. I also wouldn’t change any of the relationships that have come and gone in my lifetime. Just like Kyra and Hero have left their own pawprints on my heart, those I’ve been surrounded by have left their own unique mark on my life.

Letting go of Hero broke my heart, but the little bit of pain I experienced giving him up didn’t even begin to touch the joy I continue to live remembering our partnership and the pride that I feel knowing that he is changing lives just like he knew he would. I’m overjoyed that he allowed me to be his practice human.  

Someday, when I meet Keaton, I will personally thank him for not being ready to get on that puppy truck. I love my Kyra-bear to death, and even though I know she is only with me a short while, I wouldn’t trade this time with her for the world.