Today in My History
2001:The Creative Process
2002: Me and the Duchess
2003: Don't Know Much About His-to-ree
2006: When I Am Queen
2007: Change of Venue
2008: Bodies--Walt's and some Chinese Men--Revealed
2009: Big Steps
Books Read in 2009
Recipes for Cousins Day Drinks
VIDEO OF THE DAY / WEEK / WHATEVER
And on You Tube
Look at these Videos
Stupid, Callous, Homophobic, Hateful Legislation
This is Amazing--Tragic, but Amazing
Today's the Day
Web Side Story
New on My
Mirror Site for RSS Feed
THE BITTER TRUTH
10 January 2010
Despite my bravado about giving up each of our foster dogs, I forget each time that it's not without emotion.
The puppies are either nervous about being in the car, or excited about being in the car. They don't know it may be their last time here. They've always come back after a ride, so they don't know.
It bothers me giving up some dogs more than others. But I always get over it quickly. The dogs that I seriously considered adopting because I just couldn't bear to let them go are dogs whose name I have to check back in my journal to remember.
But at the time they leave here, that doesn't help.
There are some dogs that I love, some dogs that I love part of. Puppies almost always fit into the latter category. I love their littleness, I love their unconditional love, I love their cuddliness and cuteness. But they have usually started eating the furniture or otherwise being real pains and I'm happy to know that somebody else is going to have to deal with the problems.
Dexter fits into that love him/want-him-to-go category.
I remember the day I picked him up, this completely bald, scabby thing that you wanted to recoil from rather than pet.
I remember how he felt when I touched him--really kind of gross--but how he closed his eyes in a squint that made it look like nobody had ever petted him before and how much he loved it.
I got over the ewww factor in minutes and made a point of holding him and petting him whenever I could.
I remember how excited I was when I found the one tuft of hair on his neck, surrounded by scabs.
I remember how he and the MFL puppies bonded. How they were all the same height when Dexter arrived, but how the puppies shot up and soon towered over him, though he was always one of their group.
He started growing fur, but it was still very thin. I remember when the cold weather arrived and Dexter started wearing a sweater--which the other puppies loved to pull off of him.
I remember when Lizzie taught Dexter how to lick plates in the dishwasher
I remember that the longer he was here, the more he took over running the house and how he ordered everybody--especially Lizzie and me--around. I understood him very well. I knew when he wanted to eat, when he wanted me to sit down so he could climb in my lap.
We got into a rhythm, Dex and I. I would sit in the chair and cover my lap with a blanket. He would stand at the edge of the chair and bark at me. I would lower the foot rest. He would move up to stand on the blanket, I'd wrap my feet around his body and raise the footrest. His own little doggie elevator. Then he'd climb into my lap, claw on the blanket (which meant I was supposed to lift an edge up for him. Then he'd crawl under the blanket, settle onto my stomach and sleep there until I got up--whether that was an hour or 8 hours later.
Sometimes he lay on top of the blanket, or just on my legs. Then he would start pawing at my hand with those long claws of his. This meant I was supposed to pet him. If I didn't, he'd claw my hand and pull it toward his body. He would do this endlessly, so I stopped fighting him. I'd just pet him.
I already recorded how dinnertime has gone around here.
Ever since he was "adopted" I've been looking forward to the day when he would move out of the house and peace could reign again, but for various reasons the pick up date would be postponed. Time and again, I sweetly told him he was a pain in the butt and I'd be happy when he moved to his new home, but then I'd pick him up and cuddle him. All Dexter knew that he was in a warm home, he idolized me and he had a good thing going.
So today I loaded both dogs in the car. Dexter went with his medications to meet his new family (who weren't there when I arrived). Polly was shaking--she's still traumatized by all the stuff that has gone on this week.
As we drove to Petco, Dexter started whimpering. It was cold in the car. So I pulled him into my lap when we stopped at a stoplight. Suddenly I got all choked up, realizing that I'll probably never see him again. Tears came quickly--and left quickly. We got to Petco and I turned him over to one of the volunteers. She asked if I'd like to say goodbye. I got all choked up again and said that I'd already said my goodbyes. Then I got the hell out of there.
A year from now, I might not remember his name, but today I fight
tears as I write this and I already miss him.
PHOTO OF THE DAY