The Visit...

It's fun and games until you get home...
I grew up in a very average home when I was a kid or so I thought.  We attended the local Southern Baptist Church, and that meant that you went to Sunday morning service, Sunday night service, and Wednesday night prayer meeting and in my world, it was very normal.  I will tell you, I was a rounder.  Dad was a Sunday School teacher, Mom sometimes sang in the choir, and I was the local hellion, and I really was.

Definition – Noun - INFORMAL• NORTH AMERICAN  A rowdy, mischievous, or troublemaking person, especially a child named Kenny Shuck

I wasn’t mean, I was just curious and didn’t see anything wrong with the things I did, and to me, it was normal.  My best friend Billy’s big sister got married at the church, and as a custom, they took the top layer of the wedding cake off and saved it in the freezer in the church kitchen for their first year anniversary.  It was a grand occasion but Billy and I couldn’t until it was over to get some cake.  It sure was good, and I’m sure we stole another piece, more later.

This week, several families will visit there new prospective dogs that are in Clancy’s Dream care.  In my mind, every dog has some issues, even mine  They might be little issues, and some may be more serious, but each one of us and every dog has something that may stand out.  Before the new family comes over and meet the dog, the dog has already settled in and is living a normal life, acclimating into our style here at the farm.  Then it happens, when the new prospective owner walks in, the dog starts barking and acting scared.  I have even seen them get into a skirmish with one of my dogs, and I ask myself, where did that come from.  If I have said it once, I said it a thousand times, “I have never seen that before” and it was true and I know they thought I was lying, but I wasn’t. 

On one hot summer day on Sunday morning, the choir had a “special” piece of music and Billy, and I was sitting right behind the floor fan at the back of the church.  The choir got up, and the church was silent.  When they started to sing, so did I.  I thought it was only fitting because I knew the words to the music and I would help make a "joyful noise" too.  I inched up to the large floor fan that was blowing air up to the front of the church and like a professional singer, I bellowed out the words into the whirling fan blades which projected and amplified my voice.  Everyone was amazed and kept turning around and shaking there head from side to side, it must have been a Baptist thing.  Mom must have gotten sick because she left the choir and walked back and sat between Billy and me.  Everyone watched her walk down the center aisle to the back of the church, shaking there head.  I will never understand why she pinched the snot out of my leg and for some reason, I didn't get any Sunday dinner, I'm sure I needed to practice.

Sometimes it takes just a few hours for a dog to settle down.  Their whole world had changed in an instant.  The go from one home to another, and at times, it is a drastic change.  Some dogs come from very little freedom, or a 3 X 4 steel cage at a shelter with no yard to 10 acres of rolling hills and open spaces and they are confused.  Some dogs come from an outside dog house to a warm king size bed.  Some dogs come from no human contact to laying in a person’s lap for the first time, their world had changed and they are confused.

My actions didn’t start in my adolescent years, but a little younger.  One of my first vivid memories of church happened one Sunday service where I became bored which was often.  Mother didn’t believe in letting me bring my toys to church, so I had to entertain myself.  I ask her for a piece of chewing gum, and she sat her purse next to me.  Well, that turned out to be a bad idea.  My Mother was a smoker and smoked Kent Cigarettes and after rummaging through her purse. I found one, and after grabbing it, I stood up on the seat facing backward to the congregation and pretended to smoke it.  People were amused at first, and then some started to laugh.  I was so proud I was being funny and the more smiles and laughter I got, the more I pretended to smoke and faster I got.  I would take in a big draw and blow the pretend smoke up into the air, just like Mom but I swear I did not know it was a Tampon.  That was not a good day in the Shuck house.

All dogs are Angels at times
When people first see a dog, I always worry that they want that "perfect" dog, one that doesn't do anything wrong but acts like a perfect angle.   There are no perfect dogs, but be patient, things will come around, and they will settle in and learn your ways and abide by your rules, but as God is my witness, sometimes they act like little Hellions when you want them to be angels.  We all make mistakes and have faults, and it’s a miracle I made it to an adult and my family not kicked out of the church.  If I was not given a chance as a kid, where would I be now...  See, as bad as I was, I made it and so will the dogs that are not perfect. they just need your understanding, I now pity my mother.

Every word of this story is true and it's only a small portion of my young life.  Billy and I did finish off the Wedding cake before the first year anniversary and our fun continued.   Ken
“Now that I have arrived at your home, everything is strange, and I don’t feel good.
Don’t feel impatient if I don’t sleep on my new bed. Yesterday, I slept on a cold concrete floor.
Don’t be terrified if I gobble up my food. Yesterday, I had to do it to survive.
Don’t get angry if I pee on your floor. Yesterday, it didn’t matter where I went.
Don’t be sad if I am afraid of your loving hand. Yesterday, It wasn’t a loving one.
Have patience with me, it’s your world, but not yet mine.
If I trust you, I can give you the greatest Gift I have to give. . . My Heart.
Please never forget, I had nothing before.  All I need is a bit of time to adjust.”