In February of 2006 my Mom and Dad took me to Virginia Beach, Virginia. Having never seen sand before I enjoyed digging and thrashing around. My parents and I went for long walks on the beach and boardwalk and visited with many people.
One morning we awoke to lots of rain. My Dad decided it would be a great day to take us shopping. He knew I love to go shopping and Mom doesn't mind either. We all dressed; they wore warm clothes and I wore my red therapy vest.
After a couple of stops at some of Mom's favorite shops we decided to visit the local Pet Smart. As we looked around, a group of kids asked my Mom if they could pet me and after telling me "gentle down" she said, "OK."
My Mom noticed a small child with his mother in the buggy nearby and asked if he could get out and pet me. At that very moment the mother burst into tears. She began taking her 4 year old son, who was deaf and just learning to walk out and placing him on the floor. The little one dropped to his bottom and I rolled into his lap. He smiled and rubbed me and we stayed in the floor together for almost an hour.
During my time with my new little friend his mom began to tell my parents about his life; he would soon undergo his 28th surgery. She continued to fight back tears as she explained about taking him to the grocery store and other places and how he would reach out and touch people. She said, "most people would become offended and make rude comments." Even after explaining that her son was deaf and touch was his means of communication with everyone around him it seemed people did not want to be touched or around this precious child.
My parents and I could not understand how anyone could treat such a gentle, loving child of God in this manner. After cuddling for a long time on the floor we all needed to go. I will never forget this special little boy. We promised to pray for Ryan and began getting ourselves together.
Ryan's Mom thanked us over and over again for asking if he could pet me and my parents assured her the blessing was ours. Ryan will forever remain in our hearts as we continue our journey reaching out to others.
Woofs and Wags,