Last Wednesday I received the call from Canine Companions that Haddie did not have a match. That was blogged about and I received wonderful comments and support. Thank you!! The week continued, and by each passing day our family was handling it well.
I canceled our Train tickets and used our full refund money to purchase new tires on our Toyota (which were desperately needed) with the possibility that we would get a status change on Haddie, and we would need to drive to California the day before Graduation.
(Spoiler Alert; as you can see, I am typing this the day before Graduation, so you can already guess the outcome).
We held onto our hotel reservations because those you can cancel truly at the last minute without penalty. We also had a two-night camping reservation to the same Lake we camped back in May that we were willing to forfeit for the trip to California. But since California looked out of the picture, we went camping. It was a great get-away, but I must admit that we all had Haddie on the mind. Holding out hope that perhaps her status would change.
While camping, I received an email from a Puppy Raiser in our Chapter who I had just talked with on Saturday; both our girls were being held in Advanced Training for a November Graduation. But Monday's email were cheers that her dog had been matched over the weekend, and she would be Graduating on Friday.
The Roller Coaster was not over for our family. Tuesday night at Puppy Class, we learned that others in our Chapter, who had matched the week prior, had not received their "final Graduation Call." There was still Hope.
By Wednesday morning, I reasoned that with our many-states-away travel to California, it warranted an early call to Canine Companions to check the status of Haddie. It has been known that phone calls of final status can be given as late as Wednesday night. We just needed to know.
The person I talked to was very polite and she didn't think twice about my phoning them, instead of the protocol of them phoning us. She shared that Haddie's status had not changed. She will remain in Advanced Training with the hopes of Side Placement prior to November, or a November Graduation. I hung up the phone, and cancelled our hotel reservation online, and our Puppy Sitters for Kolby and our beagle Cora.
It was official.
Today - today it is raining and it does not feel like summer and we are all in a funk. I will be honest and let you know that it is hard to kiss goodbye a Graduation for a puppy that you have set your heart to Graduate in August 2013 since we received her in August 2011. I knew that she could be released at any moment, but when she made it this far and entered Team Training - the let down was really hard.
And did I mention, it is raining?!
I am trying not to think about Haddie, alone in her kennel while the rest of the dogs keep working, and their Trainers keep preparing for the final goodbye of their String, and working with the recipients one on one. I am hoping my racing mind is all drama and is not reality.
I am hoping the reality is Haddie is basking in the California Sunshine with some amazing volunteer who has come to campus to love on those Team Training dogs that did not get a match, and that Haddie is getting all the attention that she is so deserving of, while she waits for Advanced Training to continue.
Tomorrow - the day of Graduation - we will be cheering from our home state for the wonderful Graduates and their Forever Person, because that is what it is all about. There ARE people and dogs who have been matched and that is the blessing that needs to be honored and celebrated.
Our family will be making a day-vacation tomorrow to a destination in our state that will be awesome to sneak away to. A celebration of our own for the job well done in raising Haddie, and for the Graduation that is taking place tomorrow, and for our continued wait.
"Everything will be alright in the end.
So if it's not alright, it is not yet the end."