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Autism: Welcoming Foxy Home

04 Jan

Despite the fact that this would be happening just after I got home from church, I felt I did really well in the service that day. I paid attention, and was moved by the words, and was able to focus and think of other things as well. The transition, I anticipated, would be challenging. Hopefully by Christmas, things would be more settled, I hoped. Even so the anxiety wasn’t so bad; not as bad as the Friday before when she was supposed to come, that is.

He brought her in the house, and talked with my husband, who is much better with people than I am – though I did say some things. “My girl,” Clara didn’t even bark, and I was so pleased that she remembered them. He was pleased, too.

He sat in a chair (Finn’s chair, but I don’t think he minds fur much as they have so many dogs, and Finn wasn’t in it at the time) holding Foxy in his arms. The plan was to get a harness and leash on her so that she wouldn’t run and hide in her new home. Only he didn’t know how to use the harness, so I was trying to put it on her while she was in his arms.

The thing was, though, that I had it set to fit Clara, and Foxy was quite a bit bigger (despite being the same breed, and Clara’s mother above that.) Adjusting it while she was in his arms was really awkward for me – after all, I had only met him for a few moments before this when he dropped Clara off with me nearly six months ago. So I picked her up, and carried her to my seat, and put the harness and leash on there.

I thought she would be nervous, and would want to run and hide, but she just sat there happily letting me pet her. He was pleased with that as well. He picked up Clara and visited with her while talking with my husband – and I held Foxy, petting and talking to her the entire time. When he went to leave, I picked up my new girl and held her while I said, “goodbye, and thank you.”

I then sat with her again, and my Clara came to sit with us, too.

Things only got better after that.

She allowed me to carry her for her “walk” not two hours after she arrived. She sat beside me when I sat down, came to me when I called her, was “best friends” with my Clara (who hasn’t taken to any other dog in the six months I have had her -which is the reason we agreed to adopt Foxy in the first place) and even slept on my pillow the first night, giving me “kisses” every time I moved.

I took off her harness and leash; she didn’t need them.

By the next morning I could take her out into our yard without being tethered to me. If she wasn’t beside me, she was right next to Clara. Watching them has been amazing; they have the same ways of communicating – right down to the exact eye movements to express the same desires. When they look out the window, their heads turn at the same moments, like they have been synchronized.

In less than 24 hours, she was as well adjusted as if she had been here for months.

I love how every time I move in my house, I hear the sound of 8 feet pattering along behind me. I love how whenever I sit down, I have two warm bodies climbing onto my lap, and falling asleep with their heads resting on each other. I love how when I wake up in the morning, I have two wriggly, squiggly bodies excitedly greeting me, and choosing from a pile of small stuffies which would be the best to bring to me as gifts.

foxys-first-day-dec-11-005

I love “my girls” and my heart is overflowing with a joy I didn’t ever expect to experience again – tinged of course with a pain that brings me to tears at my happiest moments with them for the loss that brought them here. Yet that very pain makes the joy all the sweeter, for I know how much it has to overcome to reach me.

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