White Dog was prepared this morning. She shared breakfast with Michael and hurried him to get his shoes on and back pack gathered. Steve was hustled along as he gathered car keys, wallet, and phone. When everyone was ready for the trip to school, White Dog announced that no one was going ANYWHERE without her! She had no intention of sending Michael to spend his day at a place she had not even seen much less given her approval to! She sat in the doorway until Steve relented and said she could ride along; she was the first one into the car. When she returned, White Dog reported that the high school had passed her inspection: it was clean, there were lots of windows, outdoor spaces were well kept, and the people seemed friendly. She gave Michael permission to attend and encouraged him to do well there.
Later in the day as she lay on the bed watching me paint for the first time in what seems like a million days, White Dog tapped my knee. I stopped and looked at her. "Am I doing OK," she asked? "I mean, helping Michael feel like he's one of us?" "Oh, Sweet White Dog!" I replied putting down the brush and coming over to stroke her. "You are better than just OK, you are the best!" I buried my face in her ruff and almost did not hear her reply. "Thanks," she said, "I just needed you to tell me because sometimes it is hard."