I thought I would recognize a God-send when I saw one, but Stella surprised me.
Blessings are odd things. They are not always wrapped in shiny paper. They don’t always announce themselves. Once in a while, they show up as stinky, wrinkly, smooshy-faced, barrel-shaped bulldogs with faces that, as one neighbor put it, “only a mama could love”.
The day Stella came had been a rough one for me, a confusing mess that represented everything my job had become – a sinking sand pit with me stuck in the middle. Her unexpected arrival jolted me, but not enough to get me unstuck. When my son left to pick up food and a bed for her, she promptly pooped on the floor at my feet. In hindsight, in her place, I might have done the same.
Not an auspicious start.
I cleaned up the pile, promising myself that it was the last thing I would do toward taking care of this dog. My son brought her. He would have to take care of her. That selfie promise lasted, well, maybe a couple of days. My eyes kept straying over to where she slept, watching for signs that she was going into labor. I checked her water bowl. Was it full? Was it clean? The times I was pregnant, I wanted a generous supply of clean water.
As the weeks limped along, I realized Stella’s first blessing to me. She forced my mind off of myself and onto another. Not another human. Another creature.
Stella still paws me, claims me, clings to me as if she’s afraid that no one will keep loving her. After all, it didn’t work out before.
If only I could make her understand.
“Stella, I thank God for you. You are not a mistake. God brought you to me at the perfect time. You. Specifically you. Of all the dogs on the planet, He chose you and brought you here. I am glad that He did. It shows how much He cares for you. And for me. An answer to prayer shines like a star. You came right on time, Stella. Not a moment early, not a moment late.”
So keep your eyes open. You never know when a disguised blessing will appear, even one in the form of a four-legged, walking barrel.
© H.J. Hill 2016 All Rights Reserved