My “Quandary”

My “Quandary”

The author and her new Seeing Eye dog in New York City

Quan and I stand before the Freedom Tower in Manhatten

It’s a boy. It’s a *big* boy.


When Joan handed me his leash and told me his name, Quan, I was, what? What does it feel like when somebody gives you the next decade of your life? I have to admit my first feeling was that of humility. Seeing Eye was trusting me with one of their dogs again. And in just two weeks he’d be mine.


Then I was just plain thrilled.


On our very first Juno walk Joan told me to bend my elbow and hold my hand higher. They had me seated at the head of the table in the dining room. All of that should have given me a clue, but no. I was clueless until this great big shepherd dog walked into my life.


“Do you think I could get a calm dog this time?” I spoke those words to Pauline.

“I think pace and pull are about the same as they’ve always been. But I don’t think I could take a pull like Beverly had.” I spoke those words to Jan.

“No, I don’t care if it’s a big dog. Yes, a male will be fine.” Those words I spoke to Jim Kessler.


And they magically produced my Quan dog.


As I had done with Beverly I traveled for my job just a month after bringing Quan home. What a joy! Apart from missing my first flight – a topic for another post perhaps – the trip went smoothly. I’m working on a detail with the Department of Veterans Affairs. It’s pretty cool! I spent the past week with some of the most enthusiastic people I’ve ever met. We worked hard. We laughed a lot. We got a lot of good work done.


I don’t really know what to expect from this new “job” but I’m glad Quan’s going to be shepherding me through it all.


We arrived at Seeing Eye on Monday. Tuesday evening we had a little get-to-know-you party. Before the little social began they introduced Betsy, a counselor who was available if students wanted to talk with her. The first thing I did was ask to speak with Betsy. We sat in the corner of the common lounge and I told her about Kismet. I tried to tell her about a post from a friend on Facebook. Several of us have started a support group for people whose lives have been touched by suicide. Right after Kismet died my friend posted the following to the Facebook group, “Kismet Out Loud, KOL.”


“Sleep well sweet Kismet. All my love and condolences. KOL will carry her name proudly.”


I remembered the words of the post perfectly but couldn’t say them through my tears. I needed that “cry.”

The next day Quan entered my life.


The timing was perfect. Thank you Seeing Eye. I’m happy. Quan’s a good boy.

My new dog doing his clever imitation of a pancake

Quan flat on the floor at Hyatt Place on the National Mall in Washington, DC

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