Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Pooches: On Finding the One

I never expected Miss M to be "The One". And I never expected my experience with Miss M to lead me to E where we would one day be married with our little family.
See, I was very calculated when I began looking for a dog. My first decision was that I wanted to adopt. My second decision was that it would NOT be a pitbull-type dog. Not even a percentage. When I was scanning all the photos on Petfinder I would skip all the dogs with big blocky heads, and I would move on from anything even hinting at being a pitbull.
But then an amazing thing happened. After meeting so many dogs at so many adoption events, I met a pitbull. And she was amazing! She was laying on the ground, patiently, and when I looked in her direction her face lit up and she began wiggling in excitement. I had never met a dog so sweet and so in tune with people--until I went over and met the second pitbull at the event.
 It was only after meeting my first pitbull in real life that I realized how wrong all my assumptions about pitbulls had been. And I had to make Miss M mine.
(Vintage Miss M)
At the same time, I had been very calculated as a single girl. I always had a singular idea of the 'type' of person I would end up with. And I would limit most of my experiences to trying to find that type of person.
But after realizing how wrong I had been about my perfect dog, I realized how wrong I had been in my calculations.
As E wrote in this (favorite!) post, we were never expected to be together. I am Jewish and E is Korean-American. Our families expected different things for us.
But at the same time, it was inevitable:
E, who has a PhD in neuroscience, was working in a research lab. He wanted to become more involved with his community. He decided to become a high-school teacher in the city.
I was working downtown in advertising. I wanted to become more involved in my community. I decided to become a high-school teacher in the city.
We ended up teaching at the same school; we started the same year. Our school was so big, it was only that second year that we met each other. I knew early. He was afraid of my pitbull...until he met her that first time.
If it hadn't been for my experiences with Miss M, I never would have realized how wrong my calculated efforts were. Or what I could have missed out on. And now we live happily with two pitties in the city!
I'm always curious about everyone's back stories and how they knew their pooches were right for them. How did everyone else end up with your "one"? And did your "one" help you find your other "one"?

28 comments:

sweetemaline said...

This was such a sweet post - perfect for Valentine's Day! I love the story of how you met Ms. M and how you met E...just so, so sweet! I love it!

Sam said...

I'll have to do a blog post on it one day! I think everything with us hinged on Aaron liking Sam! :D

Sam

TheQueerBird said...

Aww, I love this post! My "one" (now wife) helped me find and pick out my first dog, Daphne. Though Wife will deny she had much to do with it, she suggested we stop at a shelter "just to look". It was just before we'd been dating for 6 months. Our second pup was a little more me and a little less her (she calls them my dogs), but we brought Fae home on our one year wedding anniversary. I couldn't have been happier!

Two Grad Students and a Pittie said...

AMAZING, loved loved loved this post!

HoundDogMom said...

What a terrific post for Valentines Day. Sniffs, The HoundDogs

tiarara said...

aww. so sweet! happy hearts day to you and your pitties! :)

Tiara and Leroy

a lil bit of Sarah said...

Perfect post for Valentines! I too ended up with a dog that was very different than what I originally wanted!

Lily Mayfield said...

Such a sweet story... Thanks for sharing! We got our first dog, Joni just before we got married. And we adopted Louie last year for valentine's day. Both dogs bring back great memories! As far as choosing a dog, I always feel like the dogs found me.

Claudia said...

What a sweet post! I hope you have that shadow picture blown up and framed in your house. I love it.

My post is coming soon - it's almost Lola's adoptaversary.

Kate said...

Aw, what a sweet post :) I love that you were all able to find your Ones!

SherBear said...

I'm really not sure what it was about Nala that made me know she was "The One", but after three years of volunteering at ACS and interacting with hundreds of dogs I knew within the first five minutes of having Nala out that she was it. I wasn't even looking for a dog, everytime I really liked one I thought of the time, money and commitment and it was just too much. But when I saw Nala all those excuses went out the window and I knew I'd do whatever it took to have my babygirl! And even though she woke me up this morning at 5am to throw up a piece of stick she ate I still know that adopting her was the best decision that I have ever made :-)

Rebelwerewolf said...

There's a little something in my eye... Probably just a problem with my contacts. Don't mind me. *wipes a tear*

Munch's Best Friend said...

Before my husband and I started dating, we were working together at a venue in Chicago and he was working days as a dog walker. Once I decided that I was ready for my first dog, I started sending him pictures of dogs that I was considering adopting to get his expert opinion on them (everything from Great Danes to little fluffy mutts). I sent him a picture of Detective Munch shortly after our first date and he told me that he knew Munch would be the perfect dog for me. Two weeks later, we went on another date to the pet store the day I brought Munch home, that's the day I realized that I had two of the best friends a girl could ever ask for. We've all been inseparable ever since that day (and as soon as we saw Bea, we knew that she would be Colin's canine best friend as well)!

Amy said...

That's an awesome story! Happy Valentine's day to you, E, Miss M and Mr. B - you guys are perfect for each other.

Karen & Pearl said...

Aww, this is a perfect valentine's day post. We found Pearl without doing much (or enough) research. She is the one for my husband for sure, she had him wrapped around her little paw from day one. For me, she is the one because I will make her the one gosh darn it. We may not be super compatible, but we work hard at our relationship, haha. Isn't that how some of the best relationships work? As far as my human "one," we are opposites who balance each other out, whereas Pearl and I actually have similar high strung personalities- no wonder my husband loves her so much, "his girls" may both be high maintenance pains in the butt but for some strange reason he likes it- we keep him on his toes and keep him laughing.

Mayzie said...

This was a sweet, sweet, SWEET postie! I'm pretty sure you know that mom and me knew we were "the one" as soon as we met. And even though I didn't help mom pick out dad (she's had him around a LONG time), she says she fell even MORE in luvs with him when he says "yes" to adopting me!

Happy Valentine's Day to you and your whole family!

Wiggles & Wags,
Mayzie

In Black and White said...

Aw, such a lovely story. I looked at all kinds of dogs in shelters and online but none were quite right. I put in an application on Billy, trying not to get too excited as I'd already missed out on a few dogs. His foster mom was going to adopt him herself the very next day but decided to bring him to meet me. As soon as he walked through my door I knew he wasn't going anywhere...
I guess we'll see whether he's a good wingman or not!

Tucker The Crestie said...

What a great post ... I always love to know "the back story" on things. Obviously you and E were a perfect match!

Two French Bulldogs said...

a nice Valentine's Day post
Happee Valentine's Day
Benny & Lily

A&A Friese said...

First of all holy crap E! A PhD in neuroscience, sheesh. Also, such a sweet post, it is amazing how life works out and where it takes you.

zoki said...

i love this post. i had been pining after a boxer (through a rescue) on and off for about 4 years, but never committed. then one day a soccer teammate showed up with this little brindled pooch that had been rescued by a friend of hers from a freeway off ramp. after a week of internally debating, i offered to adopt her having no idea of her temperment, breed or, even, age. she turned out to be a pit bull mix and she changed all my opinions of love and companionship. she also made me realize that the person i was dating was the wrong person for me long term. so, we broke up and then i found the person who was for me who looks and acts like no one else i've ever dated. i owe it all to my little lucky charm who opened my mind and heart to other possibilities than the ones i have my mind so set on.

Two Kitties One Pittie said...

This is a beautiful post! I didn't realize that E has a PhD in neuroscience! How did I miss that!? You two are so accomplished. I also second Claudia's statement about the photo of you 4 in the shadows. I love it.

I think I told you (probably multiple times) that Zoe was love at first sight. For me. Not for K. Sure, he thought she was "cute," but I HAD to have her. There was no question in my mind. He said no. I spent the entire night sobbing, and finally he gave in. The next day, I showed up at PAWS the minute they opened because I was worried someone else would try to take her. Fortunately, she was ours to adopt!

(K. has since agreed that she is definitely "the one." He acknowledges that I was right about her). And actually, come to think of it, I was right about him too (he didn't realize it at first...). Hmm...blog post in the making. :)

2 Punk Dogs said...

We had talked about getting a dog for a few years. Mr. Man told me that he was going home for lunch everyday since his new job was so close, which was the perfect opportunity to ask for a dog for my birthday. I checked a shelter website & saw a picture of a worried looking dog curled into a ball with one ear sticking up like a coyote. Maggie had been carried around the shelter since she was too scared to move. I sat outside her kennel for 20 minutes, then slipped a collar over her head and we went for a walk. She was frightened of nearly everything, and is still nervous around men, even Mr.Man. It helps that Duke liked Mr.Man from the day we went to find Maggie a friend. Duke is watching hockey with Mr.Man and Maggie is curled up next to me as I type.

Trissi_V said...

I found the "one" where you always meet the one...playing in an adult kickball league. We are celebrating our 3rd anniversary together today. His pooch is the "one", who decided that I should adopt Laci girl. She was being walked, right in front of us, by a rescue group while we were eating breakfast on the "petio" of one our fav restaurants here. Apollo was smitten and I couldn't refuse him with his floppy ears, so we had to get her. Two humans, two bossy cats and two dogs later, we are one big happy family.

Skinny Fat Kid said...

Ahh, the one. This is a long story, but I'll do the short one for now. Blog post will be the long version! Skinny Fat Kid and I traded petfinder postings for a while. He wanted a pittie, I didn't. I loved pitties, but couldn't deal with what other people thought at the time. We had applied for a dog, a shepherd mix, and were approved, but she was adopted before we met her. Izzy (Bridgette at the time) was a weekend foster for us and the first foster dog we had where we were in a position to actually adopt. When the weekend was over, she went back to the kennel. After thinking about her non-stop for a month, we did a foster to adopt, and the rest is history!

I'm glad I found SFK when I was dogless. It gave me time to really win him over before I turned into crazy dog lady.

kissa-bull said...

the vintage miss m photo just made my day...
thank you for the smile

Arizona Bird Dog Rescue said...

Such a wonderfully heartfelt and beautiful post!

I got my first dog accidentally. I was fostering for a local rescue group and it was only my 2nd day fostering a 6 mo. old German shepherd mix puppy when the rescue emailed me a photo of a 7 mo. old skin & bones, black & white puppy with huge floppy ears. I told them NO WAY!! Having one sick puppy was a lot of work and the black puppy had pneumonia, wouldn't eat, didn't want to walk etc. She was going to be euthanized that night and the rescue wasn't sure she'd survive the pneumonia anyway. I kept looking at her picture and a couple hours later, in a fit of madness, I called them back and said YES I'll take her. That puppy is now 2 years old, her name is Lola Lulu, and she's sleeping on my bed at the moment.

So I "foster failed" and kept her, telling myself NO WAY was I going to adopt a 2nd dog. I would just keep fostering from here to forever. I got to foster dog #10 before I totally cracked, again. This time it was a 6 year old male German shorthaired pointer (Lola is a GSP/Lab mix). I chose him over another foster dog because I'd just had a foster with a lot of behavioural issues & wanted an easier one this time around. This boy totally ignored me, totally ignored Lola, and seemed really "easy." So I took him home with us. He'd been in foster care for a year, kept to himself around people & dogs, and no one had wanted to adopt him for that whole time. He also has a slight underbite, a crooked lower jaw, and is missing two teeth on the top from an old injury although he is a very handsome dog. It took 6 weeks of him blossoming out of his shell, becoming a super affectionate, velcro dog with a huge personality & full to the brim with goofiness for me to cave and adopt him. Lola is picky about the dogs she likes and they are the best of friends. Thus temporarily ended my days fostering. However, I'm moving in a week so that I can have my two dogs and a foster, once more! :)

Emily said...

That was beyond sweet... I ended up with a pit bull because I thought they were the cutest! When we went to the shelter I kept pointing out dogs to my boyfriend I liked and every single one was a pit bull! I didn't know one breed from the next but I loved the look of pit bull type dogs-- and as we started meeting individual dogs to see who would suit us the best, the pit personality shone through as a match as well! Can't imagine our family being any different.

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