We met on a sweltering August day in the mountains of northern Georgia. Before our first encounter, I had asked the woman how it was possible to pick one from many and she said “he will pick you.” I was suspect; it sounded too easy.
So I sat in the corner of a room with two other families, waiting for the woman to unleash the crew. It was chaos. Then out of no where, this little fluffy butter ball crawled into my lap, looked into my eyes, and without words said “hi mama.” I was smitten.
We hit the road and headed north, spending the night in a pet-friendly Charlotte hotel. He slept on his back the whole night in the pillow fort I built him. I lay awake and stared at him. He was so devilishly cute. I could see we were going to have fun together.
Since that first day, Senator has been by my side (or really, sprawled on the couch) for everything. He has been my loyal companion when I was single, my buddy for walks, snuggling, swimming and napping. He shares my dislike for celery, knows how to sucker me for another bite with his aggressive nose nudge, loves to be rubbed with a towel even when not wet, has let me put him in countless Halloween costumes and Christmas attire, been on road trips, dug ankle-breaking holes on the beach, swam too far in creeks and oceans that required a few rescues, survived critical surgeries, kicked cancer, adapted to the addition of fur brothers both older and younger, and finally a human baby brother whose whole body he loves to lick, and side he loves to lay by.
Why was he named Senator? Well, living in the DC-metro area at the time, where everyone is either directly or indirectly working in politics, (myself included), I thought it would be hilarious to yell “Senator!” at a dog park and see how many heads turned. And boy did they. It never got old, and I never stopped giggling.
Someone once said, “I’m suspicious of people who don’t like dogs, but I trust a dog when it doesn’t like a person.” I don’t think there’s a person Senator has met whom he hasn’t loved. But if ever a person were to come along, I would trust his instincts implicitly. Senator has taught me empathy, kindness, love and patience unlike any human ever could. If he’s judged me at all, he’s never let on. Except of course if I don’t scratch his belly long enough. Man, that dog side-eye is fierce!
My first born, my sweet man, my good boy, I can’t wait to see what adventures lie ahead for us.