There are so many paths that I have taken on which I have observed what I conclude to be magic at the core. I’m going to re-tell a story in which I hadn’t realized all of the magic involved when I told it the first time.
|It began in 2008, when I was
buying a home in Sacramento, CA. As a single woman,
I wanted a larger dog for protection. I hadn’t had a
dog since my beloved Magnum had passed away about three
So when I found a rescue dog who immediately took to me like we’d known each other forever, I knew that she was the one. She was a shepherd mix of some sort, with short legs and long hair. I adopted her and brought her into my apartment, as I waited for escrow to close on the house.
|About the same time that I realized that I would not be getting the house I’d planned to get, I learned that my beautiful Katy-girl was not just fat, but she was, in fact, very pregnant. Despite the fact that I was living in an apartment, I was excited about the thought of having puppies in my life.|
We left Chunk’s remains at a vet in Nashville to be cremated and sent to our new address. These dogs are the only babies I will ever raise. I am unable to have children of my own, and at nearly 50, it’s too late to, even if I could. I wept and cursed myself all along the road that day and into the next.
I lay in bed that night, trying to make the pain stop. I thought of the pets that had preceded Chunk in death who might be waiting to greet him at the Rainbow Bridge. There was Katy, his mama. There was Magnum, my first dog, and Tootsie, my roommate and best friend’s chihuahua who loved to steal the tennis ball from Chunk when we all lived together. And then my Beloved Papa popped into my head. Papa had been my mother’s stepfather and the only man to remain consistently in my life from my birth to his death, just a few years ago. I saw him, walking Chunk across that bridge, and I felt joy. Papa loved me and I have no doubt he would love my dogs just because they were important to me.
and I had exactly that kind of relationship.
Ornery was a good word for him, but in the best
possible way. I have no doubt that he heard me
and laughed in my ear. It was probably my first
smile since Chunk’s departure.
At our first stop upon leaving Tennessee, we stopped at a gas station. I went inside to get some water and the cashier said, “I hope you have a great trip.” I grumbled something in my heart, and headed out the door, where I saw a picture of a wolf just above the door handle. For some reason, that picture took my breath away. I thought of Chunk, and it didn’t hurt quite so badly. As we drove through Wyoming, I watched the scenery go by. I replayed the events of that morning in my head, and began to feel the guilt and grief washing over me again. My fiance tapped me on the knee, and said, “Babe, look.”
The next stop was at another truck stop. With a compromised immune system and in the midst of a pandemic, I walked briskly straight to the restroom. There in front of me was a dream catcher displayed on the wall. Not just any dream catcher, though.
|As you can see in this dream catcher, there are four wolves: Katy, Magnum, Tootsie, and Chunk. This confirmed my sense that my Chunk was reaching out to tell me that he loves me and he’s not mad at me.|
And now we arrive at today, Wednesday, December 23, 2020. Christmas Eve Eve.I'm still reeling from having my surgery cancelled at the last minute. For the most part, I try to remain positive on social media, but the truth is, surgery scares the hell out of me. Anesthesia is risky for the healthiest of people. I have a form of interstitial lung disease, so it's particularly risky for me. Then there is the risk of infection and my lack of faith in my Nevada care team. So I have been worrying silently to myself.
Monday morning, I started my all clear liquid diet. I drank PowerAde, chicken broth, and an awful grape Jell-O that I'm not convinced wasn't tainted with floor cleaner. I had been off my low-dose aspirin regimen and my menopause symptom relief meds. I moved my infusion the week before from Wednesday to Saturday, so that I would be within the 72 hour window in which I should be most protected, according to the immunology team I trust at Duke.
So when they began calling me urgently telling me that they hadn't quite gotten it approved, yet, and they were pushing me back indefinitely, it tipped my balance. I'm moody, emotional, and just plain grouchy.
Today, I decided to finally wrap the gifts I have bought for Christmas. I love wrapping gifts, but I realized right away that I had no bows and no gift tags. I made a quick trip to the store, and then picked up the mail while I was out.
One of the packages was from Chewy.com. I had just gotten my order, so I couldn't imagine what it was.
💝It was a message from heaven.💝
The card read:
"A one of a kind painting for a one of a kind pet.
We wanted to send you something to show how much we care.
Love, your Chewy family."
OK, Buddy, I'm listening. By the way, you have excellent timing! 💝