It usually takes me between 15-20-30+ minutes to get to Willard's place; depending upon red lights, green lights, construction delays, traffic ~~ you know how it goes. And usually, I am not thinking the delays are Divine, if you catch my drift. Today when I arrived at Willard's assisted living community, I don't know if I arrived late or on time. All I know is that I arrived at just the right time. As Chester and I got out of the car, a woman was just leaving the building. She greeted us and gushed over Chester and he of course soaked it up. She mentioned she had just spent quite a bit of time with a woman on the first floor who LOVED dogs. She asked where I was visiting and I told her the second floor, but but would try to see her as well. She told me the woman's name and room #. I prayed I would remember :-) if I was supposed to visit.
After Chester snuggled with Willard on floor two, the Lord indeed jogged my memory (miracles happen everyday!). The receptionist beeped us through the secure doorway into the memory loss unit. Chester and I trotted through the lovely living room area and down the hallway. We knocked on Gladys' door and asked if she would like to have a visit from a doggie.
Precious Gladys, dressed in a bright red Christmas sweater and black pants (of course black pants that will show every golden hair !) sat in a soft rocking chair thumbing through a magazine. Her soft gray curls framed her face, bright with smiles and crinkled with love lines. As soon as Chester came near she gently set her magazine aside and opened her arms wide.
Come see me!
Oh my goodness, my heart welled up as I watched these two. She knew just how to kneed his ears and stroke his back and whisper doggie-words to him.
On her counter were framed family pictures and a small watercolor of a golden retriever. I asked her if this was her dog.
I used to have a dog. I love dogs. My dog's name was......was........ I can't remember.
That's OK, sometimes I can't remember names. I smiled. Chester sure loves being with you. I can tell you love dogs. His tail thumped against her bed and he buried his nose into her once spotless black pants.
Though Gladys' memory was fading there was a look in her eyes that brought tears to mine. It was a familiar look. The way she knew just how to love-on Chester, and the twinkle of affection in her eyes as she did so. This look, this tenderness, this expression..... well, it reminded me of me. How I feel about Goldens, the love God put in my heart for them, how I can't imagine my life without one by my side.
Though Gladys could not remember the name, or why the framed watercolor adorned her counter top, I knew there was a Golden Pup in her heart, and it was a blessing for me to share my golden pup with her.
We'll be back.
Thank you, Lord, for moments like these.