My Name is Shoshawna and I am the proud person belonging to 5 pit bulls. All of them have touched my life in some way, but the one that strikes me the most is my beloved Christabelle Blue. Christabelle is a 2 and a half year old blue female Pittie and she is a big one, tipping the scale at 75 lbs. She is the most loving thing I have ever met.

My husband is in the Navy and long periods of separation are nothing new to us. We also have 2 small kids, one is 4 and the other is 2. In 2007 and 2008 when my husband was yet again deployed for 7 months over the holidays, I found myself alone and crying in bed more often than not. Well, alone without my husband, but the bed was far from empty. Christabelle would get up in the bed and burrow under the blankets and lay on her side right up against me, and most nights I would fall asleep with my face nuzzled into her chest or her neck as she kept watch over the rest of the house. She would let me cry for hours if I needed to, never moving or grumbling her opinions. She was my everything. It didn’t matter what bills got paid, what we had for dinner and she certainly didn’t care if the sheet were clean or hairy.

Christabelle also taught my son, Peyton to walk. She would sit next to him with her butt next to his and nudge him with her head. She would wait until he held onto the base of her tail and she would slowly get up, half pulling-half guiding him up to his feet. She would walk so slow for the first few weeks as he got his balance and if he teetered and started to fall, she would dive down on the floor in front of him so he would land on her and not hurt himself. Eventually he started walking better and faster and she would let him set the pace every time, never rushing him or pulling away. The day he let go of her was the scariest day of their lives, him for realizing the dog was, in fact, not attached to his hand and Christabelle for realizing he had finally learned to go without her. She would follow right along and if he started to wobble she would push herself against him to let him grab the faithful handle and get his balance back and off he would go, with her right beside him. She soon decided that if my husband or I weren’t in the room, it wasn’t safe for Peyton to walk so she would go to him and nudge him to make him sit down so he wouldn’t wander and get into something and get hurt.

People ask me all the time if I am concerned that my Pit Bulls will hurt my kids… I tell them I am more concerned for the dog’s safety. For those who have never seen a Pit Bull dressed up like a princess with makeup and nail polish on, come to my house…you will see the true side of the Pit Bull- loving, caring and eager to please. I will probably never have anything but Pit Bulls in my house, they are full of love and compassion and I think they really understand people and the things we tell them.

I hope this story helps people overcome their fear of Pit Bulls and maybe someday we will all be able to walk our Pit Bulls around the Lincoln Memorial in DC, a place that was founded on Freedom and Difference and as a place to escape prejudice and persecution.