Thursday, May 3, 2007

Dogs, Diets and Digests

Where to start? It’s been several weeks since we began this blog and much has happened. Hence, no entries in weeks. We’ve been too busy. It will probably be best to go through it chronologically. I’ll leave out the stuff that really has nothing to do with our growing family.

First off, we decided to start practicing our adoption skills early and have already added a new member to our family. She is short and furry and likes to go to the bathroom on our rug.

She is a Pembroke Welch Corgi and her name is Lucy. We agreed upon the name readily after acquiring her from a breeder not far from where we live. Her coloring makes it appear sometimes as if she is wearing a pair of glasses, so her full name is Lucy In Disguise. As you can see from her very large ears, she doesn’t share our former dog’s reception problems. I’ve already got a music mix in the works for her, including of course, The Beatles “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds”, David Bowie “Diamond Dogs”, and Dave Matthews Band “Satellite”.

We wanted to wait a while after our last dog, Helen, passed away before committing to another one. I know some people might think we really didn’t wait all that long (about 6 weeks), but for us it was quite some time. One of the key motivating factors was our oldest son, Jackson. Angie has always wanted to see one of her boys with his own puppy. Personally, I think I could have done without the whole puppy experience again. I say this after having spent half the night outside in the rain with Lucy because she just seems to refuse to move her bowels tonight. But if I left her out in the house, she would loose them the second we looked away from her.

When we explained to Jack what had happened to Helen, his immediate reaction was remorse, then within seconds his mood changed and he asked, “So when can we get another dog?” We asked him what kind of dog he wanted, big or small. Those are really the only kind to a boy who can rule one and be ruled by the other. No surprise for Jack, he wanted a small dog.

I don’t have much affection for most small breeds, but I always liked the Corgi’s. As adults they have short stubby legs but the body of a medium-sized dog. Sounds strange, but they’re cute. And as puppies, well, they just look like little bears at first. Then those ears pop up. It was difficult, even for me, to take home only one. Lucy was one of two Jack hand picked himself, Angie and I made the final decision. Angie liked Lucy because she was “spunky”. We maybe should have gone with one of the calmer ones.

As for our China adoption, well, our paperwork has been going very smoothly, except for one, my doctor’s physical. During my first set of tests, I got two negative marks. My cholesterol was slightly elevated, due to four months of inactivity from my back problems. That problem corrected itself after my return to full time work (and when I stopped eating all that Ben & Jerry’s).

The second negative was with my liver, which was reporting elevated enzyme levels. Upon a second set of tests, those levels had dropped significantly, however were still abnormal. Now, I think my liver enzymes have been out of whack for quite some time. I had mono at 24 and my liver shut down. When I tested for a new life insurance policy in 2001, the levels were elevated. The nurse said it could be a virus, or it could just be that my enzymes are naturally higher; but the doctor won’t sign off on me without a consultation with a specialist.

This stinks in terms of getting our paperwork all wrapped up for the adoption, but I am glad I’ll get the chance to figure out just what is going on with my liver once and for all. My appointment is on May 21.

Other than my doctor’s report, we are all ready to move on to the second step in the adoption process which is the FBI fingerprinting and review of our paperwork by the state and federal agencies. I certainly hope there aren’t any surprises popping up from the FBI.
And finally, this is not the only place where our adoption process will be chronicled. An ambitious young reporter named Rachel at our local paper decided it would make a good on-going feature. She came by this evening to interview Angie and I (Jack put in his two cents worth as well), and we welcomed her with a home cooked meal of ziti. We had a wonderful time, often straying off the subject. Once the article is published you can read it at