Thursday, September 17, 2009

Good-bye Old Friend and Boy News Too


Be thou comforted, little dog, Thou too in Resurrection shall have a little golden tail.
Martin Luther

I've been holding on to this quote for most of the year, knowing that this day was coming. That day has come and now the little puppy that came to VBS in a wagon in the summer of 1997 that Mark and I just couldn't resist has been laid to rest 12 1/2 years later in the backyard of our home in Missouri, many miles, many years, and many memories away. We named her Lucy when we first held her and she earned her middle name, Tuesday, that same summer when she kept finding one more thing to chew up and destroy on a Monday and I would tell her "you'll be lucky if you live to see Tuesday." This is the only dog that I have ever known that would tear the house down to get in, even one time coming through a storm window because she just couldn't stand to be outside even one moment longer. She was a houdini dog that could get out of any fence at any time, of course she only really wanted back in the house so would escape from the back yard and be sitting on the porch whining to get back in. This past couple years she has been so well behaved that we've not even had a gate on our yard fence and haven't needed a leash for quite some time, after all she just wanted to be with us.

We've been knowing for a couple weeks that the time had come and that we couldn't leave for vacation knowing that someone else would have to make that decision or that she would die alone and wondering where we had gone. We've wracked our brains trying to figure out how and what to tell John. Whenever we leave from the hospital to go home he tells us that we are going home to be with the dog, he loved for her to go outside with him and would sit in his chair in the door and sign 'come' until she would go with him for whatever outside adventures he was having. It's so hard to explain to someone that their friend is old and tired and sick and dying and that we can't take her to the hospital and get her fixed, after all look how many times we've taken John to the hospital. Finally this morning Mark found the words and with no remorse or hesitation told John that Lucy was going to go and live with Jesus, with this John was good and then he and Lucy went outside to watch Mark dig the hole.

The watchers got bored well before the work was done, but as I would watch out the window I could see, could almost feel the grief of the digger. In our 14 years of marriage this is the second beloved dog that Mark has had to dig a grave for and this is no easy task, much harder than the roots and clay is the good-byes and this time knowing that there will be no other dog until John's health is more stable makes that good-bye even harder. Many nights that John has been in the hospital it's just been Mark and Lucy home and it's really just hard to imagine our home without her.

My sister and I have a running commentary that our dad's job in heaven is dog keeper, my dad loved dogs way beyond the normal amount of love that people have for dogs and there were very few times in our lives that our home and yard weren't inhabited by a dog or two or three or more. In my mind he now has one more, one whose hips no longer hurt, who can once more bound up stairs, knock pictures off the wall to chew their frames and maybe now she won't have to be afraid of thunderstorms or fireworks. Rest in Peace our friend, we miss you.


I don't know that I would actually call it a benefit to have a window broken out of the door to the garage, but I think John would.


This is John and I last week when he was admitted for a bit trying to figure out when/how his tugged on line would be replaced. The tiger came with a football player and a half dozen or so cheerleaders, I'm not sure John even realized that the tiger came with company at all, he only had eyes for the tiger and was not thrilled that they wanted him to stop looking at the tiger for his picture to be taken.


Have basement stairs, well it's recently been discovered that they are good for rolling balls down and scooting down and throwing things down, hmmmmm, suppose some day we will have to retrieve those balls and things from the basement, but the boy, well he's already been retrieved.


Thank you to a Looper friend's daughter for stickers! John was signing thank you when I took this picture and was not doing it again for the camera no matter how much I asked, he was way too interested in pasting stickers on things!


Sometimes when you play with the neighbor girls you get dirty, sometimes when you get dirty daddy brushes you off!

Even though the last few weeks have held lots of smiles and giggles and fun and learning for a little boy it's been a rough go too. Something is going on in his gut that is making it hard for him to get his g-tube feeds up where they belong. We know for a fact that John has poor motility in his gut and with no stomach muscles to help push things out he has a hard time keeping stuff moving in the proper direction. Yesterday we made a formula change hoping that it would help, so far it's interesting, now instead of puking 4 times a night every night he is not puking but is kinda gassy, hurts like heck for an hour or so before he poops and is pooping something that is green and weird but at least doesn't smell like roadkill the way that it does when he is suffering from intestinal viruses or has stopped absorbing stuff. He has an upper GI in Omaha on Tuesday and hopefully then we will find out what is going on or if we need to just continue the way we are with little changes that each hopefully make things better. As always we are doing this one day, one thing at a time and trusting in God's mercy to carry us through the next bit, He's never let us down.

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