How it all began…


I have never been the type of person that believes Everything Happens for a Reason. I have actually thought just the opposite during the worst of times (I am not a bad person so why am I so depressed/anxious/in pain, etc). And I have resented people who advised me that everything that happens is a part of some Grand Universal Plan.

On Monday morning, June 25th 2012 I sat down at the computer to surf. This is a very positive thing because for the first few months of my leave of absence I was frightened of the computer and refused to touch it. Gradually I began by using it grudgingly and finally developed an interest in searching new and interesting sites. I cannot remember what I was expecting to accomplish when I typed RESCUE PIT BULL into the search engine. But I blame Sheila. And Coco Bella.

I spent the next few hours viewing adoptable dogs. But I cannot say that I wanted or felt ready to  take that responsibility on. I viewed mature males mainly and I liked brindles in particular. I saw many dogs that were listed as ‘urgent’. I loved that athletic powerful Pit Bull build. The search started in Delaware, moved to Pennsylvania, over to New Jersey and on down to Virginia. I saw hundreds of beautiful Pits for adoption. I mentally tried on the idea of picking one and bringing it home. Sort of like trying the idea on for size.

I allowed myself the thought that if it was meant to happen, then give me a sign and let one of these dogs jump right off the screen and smack me right in the heart. Since I was not a believer in Meant to Happen, I felt pretty safe.I did see many dogs in trouble and certainly wanted to help them out, but adopting? Huge step. Life changing. Loads of additional responsibility – something I had eschewed for a long time. But there was still something intriguing in knowing that Edwin and I had no pets and we could accommodate that dog, or maybe that dog – pick and choose. The idea was sort of heady.

So I kept the game up. Unexpectedly a map of the United States popped up on the screen. In the center of each state was a number to click. That number indicated how many Pit Bull rescue groups were located in that state. There is Delaware, look at Pennsylvania…and the map actually indicated that there was a rescue in West Virginia!

Now I was born in West Virginia so this interested me. I could not imagine this breed taking root there. Although my childhood and college years with my family were wonderfully idyllic, I still had a lot of not – so – great memories of my first marriage there. Unfairly this did color my perception of the state.I clicked the number on the map ( only one group was listed) and began scrolling through the photographs. What do you know, apparently there are Pit Bulls in West Virginia.I saw a brindle, a gorgeous blue….

His picture may as well have filled the entire screen because I know that I saw nothing else. There was a huge head poking shyly over the back seat of a car and almost touching his nose to the camera lens. His muzzle was scarred and deeply furrowed with angry cuts and scabs. His nose was pinkish and red. And in his brown eyes I saw the most pleading and hopeless look I had ever seen on any animal of any kind. I was struck to the heart and could actually feel the painful stab in my chest.

I anxiously read his description. He was labeled as low energy and submissive. He looked to be an unusual fawn color. He had come into the shelter in bad shape, maced in his face (I later read to break up a fight). Apparently the mace had not been cleaned up in time resulting in infected eyes and lungs. The lung infection had turned into pneumonia. I read that the cuts and bite marks on his body were infected. He had been severely beaten and had a broken jaw. Located in a shelter in Raleigh , West Virginia, he was called Roosevelt and he was up for euthanization – his time had run out. He was without exception the saddest sack I had ever seen. And I wanted him.

This entry was posted in Anxiety, Depression, dog adoption, Dogs and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to How it all began…

  1. Jean A. Perry says:

    Deeply touching! Yes….those eyes!

  2. Becky Carpenter says:

    Hey Jill read the first installment and am hooked even though I know you. keep going its awesome

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