So I didn't think I would be ready for another dog as quickly as it turned out I was. I honestly thought that we would wait at least a year. Lily's death left us all with a lot of sadness in our hearts and I just wasn't sure when I would be ready to love another dog. Tahlia was ready not even a week after Lily died. Jazzie was a different story. She took Lily's death the hardest of us all and she vowed to never love another dog, because she didn't ever want to go through the pain of losing one again. Every time Tahlia as much as mentioned getting another dog, it would send Jazzie into a panic and into anger. "No, we are NEVER getting another dog" was always her standard reply...
About a month after Lily died, I found myself searching websites for available dogs. I checked our local Boxer Rescue and several other sites. I surprised myself, since I felt that my heart was opening up to finding our next dog. So I kept looking. I don't even know how, but through many searches, I ended up at Ohio State Boxers. This particular breeder had several boxer puppies available and while looking at the pictures on her website, one of them caught my eye. I contacted the breeder and within a few days, Matt and I made the almost two hour drive north to visit the puppies. Just to get a feel for them. Just to meet them. Not necessarily to purchase one, I told myself. But deep down in my heart I knew that we would be picking our next boxer that day.
On the way up, Matt and I discussed possible names if we did end up picking out a new pup. He mentioned that the name "Red' was coming through very strongly for him for whatever reason. We had never even met the puppies, but he definitely felt that name resonate with him. I thought it was a weird name for a dog, especially a female one :-). We continued driving and I started to question if I was indeed really ready for another dog. Were we rushing into it? Would Lily be okay with us having another dog? How would Jazzie react? As all these questions were running through my mind, I closed my eyes and asked Lily to send me a sign. I needed a sign from her that this was the right thing to do and that she approved. Throughout our marriage, Matt and I have always taken the sight of a red-tailed hawk as a sign from the universe. There have been many examples where the red-tailed hawk has given us signs. It may seem weird to some of you, but to us it is very real. We consider it our spirit animal. There have been too many instances where we have asked for a sign and a red-tailed hawk has shown up. Too many for it to be just a coincidence. With that said, I specifically asked Lily to send me a red-tailed hawk.
During the entire drive, I never saw a hawk :-(
When Matt and I arrived, we were greeted by the breeder and she had all her available female puppies waiting for us. I think there were 8 of them. I immediately picked up the one that had spoken to me in the picture on the website. I held her, put her down and picked up the others one by one. The one that spoke to me most was actually not the one that I had seen in the picture. That felt weird. I had been so sure that she was the one, but I wasn't feeling it. Matt asked me which one I felt was "the one" and when I pointed to Ruby, he let out a sigh of relief since he was feeling the same way. We had both picked the same puppy, without speaking any words. The breeder told me that the puppy that we picked out is actually known as a "red boxer", because of her coloring. Matt looked at me and said: "See! I told you the name Red had come through to me".... I still wasn't on board with the name Red, but I did take it as some sort of sign that this was meant to be our puppy. We put down our deposit and left. I was a bit confused, since I felt pretty strongly that we made the right decision, but I had not seen a hawk; I had not gotten my sign from Lily. But as we were driving down the breeder's long driveway and were ready to turn onto the main road, Matt stopped the car. Right in front of us, on the fence and at our eye level, sat a red-tailed hawk staring at us. I burst into tears; there was the sign I had asked for and I was at peace.
As we were driving home, we continued discussing a name. Since Red had come through to Matt and I did take it as some sort of sign, we decided we needed to pick a name that had something to do with red. A ruby is red. A ruby also happens to be the July birthstone. Both Tahlia and Jazzie were born in July. Lily came to us and died with us in July.
It was pretty obvious that this puppy's name simply had to be Ruby <3