It was last week that we received a note from the Humane Society that someone was interested in meeting our foster dog, Jax.
We set up a get-together so he could meet this couple's other dogs, and that evening, all went well. We discussed the possibility of signing the adoption papers on Saturday at the Humane Society and parted, awaiting word from the staff there on timing and how to proceed.
It turned out I did not have to work the next day, a Friday, because I had to pick up an extra shift on Saturday. Knowing that our time was getting short, I decided to spend most of Friday with Jax. We cuddled together on the living room chair and then he napped on my lap on the bed.
I knew that I had things to get done --- laundry, cleaning, baking --- but I just couldn't get up. I wanted to remember those sweet moments with him, and so I procrastinated and enjoyed the time with his head nestled on my legs.
It was about 10 minutes after he woke up and I was downstairs in the kitchen starting some banana bread that I got a call from my husband telling me that instead of tomorrow, we were going to give Jax to his new owners that afternoon.
We discussed the details of what we would supply the new family with to make Jax' transition easier and then hung up.
And then the tears came.
I pulled myself together as I got a few things done, and my husband came home to help me load his kennel into the car.
And then the tears came.
As I was stirring the banana bread, I kept looking at Jax sitting so pretty next to me, and I couldn't help but keep crying about how I was going to miss him.
That continued on pretty much the whole afternoon as I told him what a good boy he was and kissed him on the head. I held it together as we brought him in to his new owner and kissed him good-bye one more time.
And then the tears came as I got back into the car.
Even the next day, my heart ached as I thought about him. I wasn't sad that he found a wonderful home, in fact, I'm extremely satisfied with the people that adopted him. I just miss him.
It was Saturday when I was driving home from work and thinking about him when I realized how much God had been at work in this whole situation, especially those last moments. Not only did God provide a wonderful family for him, but he provided us a last day together.
I realized, it was random that I had to work that Saturday, meaning that I took Friday off. We were supposed to give Jax to his new family on Saturday, but had I had to work on Friday and then we ended up giving him up that afternoon, I would not have had any last moments with him. I would have had to work all day, come home, load him up and take him to his new owners. Instead, I had a whole day to love on him and cuddle with him and create some last memories before saying good-bye.
I realize it made no difference to him I'm sure, but those last moments were exactly what I needed to say good-bye, to conclude our time together. I needed those last cuddles and kisses, and God provided enough snow that we had to open our tubing hill, so I had to work on Saturday at the last minute so that I had to take Friday off so I could have those last minutes with him.
Thankfulness flooded through me.
"Wow, thank you Lord for working out all those minute details so I could have exactly what I needed to say good-bye."
Once I started focusing on the things to be thankful for, it made me thankful for the time we had together and thankful for what God provided so Jax could have a fur-ever home with the perfect family.