They Grow Up so Fast

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From Puppy to Adult in 2 years

I didn’t know Chloe when she was a puppy. I’m told that she was the perfect puppy and was the brightest “pup in the class”. GRIN. Those of you who KNEW Chloe then, know that I am being deliberately sarcastic. Chloe was incorrigible, and many a trainer wondered if she’d ever GROW UP. Pat J., at Fidos For Freedom told me that, “we just kept seeing little glimmers of what MIGHT BE“. Trainers from the Puppy Program just shake their heads when they see her today. No one was certain she’d make it. Today, she is a mature working dog who honestly loves what she does. Her tail is in a “constant state of wag”.

She and I were walking this evening and I had my cochlear implant on so that I could walk “more safely”. I was amazed at all the birds I could hear, and I could hear a basketball being bounced in the park. I was thinking how “safe” I felt walking with my cochlear implant, when Chloe stopped dead and whirled to face the direction we had come. I looked quickly to see what was up, and there wasn’t anything that I could see to be excited about! Her hair began to stand on end, and she continued to stare behind us. Right when I thought I was going to say, “let’s go Chloe!”, a big black and white pitbull came racing around the corner headed straight for us.

I stepped closer to Chloe and desperately tried to remember which pocket of my pack had the pepper spray. I don’t “remember” very quickly. The pitbull raced up to Chloe and I could hear her growling softly. A boy who looked to be all of 8 or 9-years-old came running after the dog. The dog’s tail was wagging the whole time, but I kept trying to insert my body between the two of them. It didn’t take the boy long to come up and apologetically collect his dog. I continued on my way, but was actually pretty shaken. Here I was thinkin’ I was all of THAT because I was hearing so well! I really would have never known that a dog was coming if not for Chloe. (Something tells me had I been by myself, however, the attraction would not have been so keen!)

Even when she’s not working and “naked” (a.k.a. without her vest), she is a help to me. I really do feel more confident when she is with me. I do not see the “puppy that was” in her big, brown eyes.

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From Baby to Adult in 18 years

Chris is the baby of the family. It is hard to believe he was born over 18 years ago. He barely weighed 4 pounds when he got out of the hospital. Today he is 6 foot, 3 inches tall and is “all growed up”. He goes to community college this fall (as he gets to go FREE thanks to dad), he works part-time and enjoys serving in our church and community.

A couple of years ago, I didn’t know if Chris would “make it” in the transition to adulthood. He lacked the maturity I thought he needed to really succeed in high school. My husband and I kept seeing “little glimmers of what MIGHT BE”. Today, he is a hard-working young adult with a lot of compassion for his fellow man. His tail is in a constant state of… well you know!

Denise Portis

© 2009 Hearing Loss Journal

2 thoughts on “They Grow Up so Fast

  1. Denise,

    That’s a great story :0) Way to go Chris, and way to go Mom and Dad!

    And, I’ve been meaning to ask, what kind of dog is Chloe? (I’m ignorant…)


  2. I love the contrast between not having seen Chloe’s “is she gonna make it” and seeing Chris’. I can’t tell, but are ya proud of him? *grin* Maybe a little…
    Ya got a great dog, and made a great young man!

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