Monday, October 5, 2009

Faith Like A Child

We had a huge event around our house last week. It's one that I haven't posted about because I'm just now getting to the point that I can talk about it without crying. (Dang pregnancy hormones!)

Our dog, Hurley, got out of the fence last Sunday morning. I've mentioned before that Hurley is Sister's best friend in the whole world, right? Don't get me wrong, Brother loves him, too. It's just that Sister and Hurley have a connection that I can't even explain. When she gets up in the mornings, she greets him before she does the rest of us. She can't leave for school without saying goodbye to him. In the afternoons, he knows when it's time for her to come home and he waits by the door for her. You get the picture. They LOVE each other.

Back to Sunday morning. Big Daddy noticed that he wasn't hanging around the door staring at the kids begging them to play so he snuck out to check on him without mentioning it to us. He was out for a while and when he came back in, I followed him to the kitchen because he looked upset. Long story short, we have a tricky latch one of our gates in the back yard and Hurley managed to get out.

This would normally not be a huge issue but we haven't updated his tags since we moved here. We've talked about it several times but just haven't done it. Bad, bad dog parents. So, our dog is running around a new neighborhood where no one knows us with a tag around his neck that claims he should be living in Virginia. Awesome.

We decided that Big Daddy would drive around looking for him alone before we told the kids because we knew they would be devastated and honestly, I'm pretty morbid and my first thought was that I didn't want to have them with us if we saw him lying in the middle of the road.

When he couldn't find him, we decided it was time to tell the kids. I had kept them busy with an art project while Big Daddy was out so they didn't notice anything was up. Even when I ran to the bedroom every five minutes to cry my eyes out, they didn't say a word. (Again, thank you hormones!)

We told the kids and were shocked at their reaction. Brother was very matter of fact.

"Oh no. He was such a good dog, it won't be the same without him."

Sister is known for her drama so we braced ourselves for her reaction.

"I'll get my shoes and we'll drive around. He will come when I call him because he knows my voice best."

Ok, then. She was sure we'd find him with her help. As a matter of fact, even after we drove around all day calling for him and asking every person we saw outside if they'd seen him, she didn't give up hope. When we went out again hanging up posters and asking even more people if they'd seen him, she still maintained that he would be back soon.

The only time she got upset was when we came back to take a break for lunch and she thought we were giving up. Once she realized that we were going right back out, she was good. I can't tell you how out of character this is for her. She was positive that he was coming back.

I would like to tell you that I shared her faith but I, instead, cried like a baby as we drove around calling for him. I was convinced that we'd never see him again.

When Sister left for school on Monday, she assured me that someone would call and say they had found him before she came home. When she bounced off the bus that afternoon, she was beaming.

"Well, did someone bring my Hurley back?"

When I told her that we hadn't had a call yet, she didn't stop smiling.

"Don't worry, Mom. They will call. He'll be back by the time we go to bed!"

Ten minutes later an unknown number showed up on our caller ID and a sweet man a few blocks over said that Hurley was waiting for us in his back yard. We were all so giddy and rushed over to get our puppy from this angel who was holding him for us.

I know this is long and seriously, hormones? I'm crying again. My daughter never lost faith that she was going to have her dog back. I lost faith the second we knew he was missing. I am amazed daily at how much I have to learn from these little people that I love so dearly.


  1. I'm tearing up, and I'm not even pregnant! Oh, for faith like that!

  2. I'm not pregnant, don't even like dogs all that much, and I'm tearing up! What a great story. You have an amazing girl!! And such a great reminder to have faith like hers!

  3. Oh man, I am tearing up too. Such a wonderful daughter you have, a heart of cold to have that sort of trust in her dog.

    Hope you got new tags! lol

  4. I must admit that I when I caught the gist of your story, I HAD to go to the end... I HAD TO. Once I knew that Hurley was safe, I went back and read the entire post. And I cried a river, every letter of the way. I have been there as a little girl with a missing beloved dog, a teenager with a missing beloved dog and the mom of a beloved missing dog. In each case, the dogs, like Hurley, were found... but those moments and hours and sometimes days are sheer nightmares. It is clear that Sister and Hurley have that magic connection that is the miracle of dogs and kids. Her confidence comes right from the soul of Hurley. I am so happy for you all... AND PLEASE GET THOSE TAGS TAKEN CARE OF. My heart can't take it!

  5. Great lesson! Sorry you had to lose your dog to learn it. Kids are so great that way! Glad he made it back safely!

  6. I'm just like Sharon. I had to go to the end and work my way back. I'm so happy that Hurley is safe. Your daughters faith is amazing. We can all learn from her. Now, I have to go get a kleenex.

  7. Okay, first I have to fuss at you! Why didn't you tell us right off that there would be a happy ending?! You had me leaning toward the moniter and reading as fast as I could (while holding my breath) until I read the good part.

    Seriously, I'm thrilled for you all! I love happy endings.


  8. I started crying at this. That is so sweet and I'm so glad she held on to her faith that he'd come home. Lovely post Heather...

  9. It is so wonderful hearing from you. I think about you all the time... with such love in my heart!