Friday, April 30, 2010

April...Showers... and Showers...and Showers....

I have been putting off the blog... for a long time. Mostly because I knew that eventually I would have to get to APRIL. And April...April was no fun.

I remember so well the day I asked Tim to get me a puppy for my birthday in April of 1999. We hadn't been married that long. But we had only been in our house for about a month. I had Hunter... Tim had JD... and we honestly had the CRAZY idea that they would love and adore each other just as much as we did.
Boy were we in for a rude awakening.

(The Family: Grace, Sunny, Molly aka Mom and JD aka Dad)
I actually remember a day when I called my mom and could NOT go to work because I had been up crying all night. Just waiting for the two dogs to fight - and poor Hunter dog to be dead. It was AWFUL. So my solution...get JD a puppy. Maybe he would then leave Hunter alone...

We began to read the papers and look for ads... my birthday was only days away. Oddly enough I found a listing for a litter of pups in Scott County - out Pratt Lane. It was a beautiful drive... and I was so excited. We drove up to the house... and three puppies came bounding out... with this ENORMOUS and very regal looking male black lab. (Buddy - the daddy) The man that met us at the car had one of the dogs behind him, and she kept peeking around his leg and looking at me. It was love at first sight. I was smitten.
Tim on the other hand... being the super careful and hyper vigilant consumer that he is... said "Thank you for your time. We have several other litters to look at. We don't plan on buying the first dog we see. (smile) We'll be in touch."

HELLO!?!? Had he not seen that precious puppy?? Had he not seen the connection that we made - the "moment" that we had?? Her sweet face?? How could we "shop around" for true love - complete devotion - and loyalty??

So...we left. I thought about sulking. I considered tears and crying. However, with my man, there was only one other tactic. I grabbed a paper and began making furious notes... listing all the numbers on paper and once my list was complete, I tore it out and handed it to Tim. He read it over, looked up and said - "What's this?" I very bluntly said... "Those are all the places we need to go and the dogs we need to see so that we can go back and get THAT ONE." (smile)

We drove back out to Pratt Lane the weekend after my birthday to pick up my sweet Molly dog. I wish I could tell you that she was as sweet and loyal and committed to me from day one. Mmmmm... no..... she was JD's dog all the way. She liked me OK... but she adored JD. I never trained her to do anything. JD did all of that for me. She was wild as a banchee - and she could run like the wind. She was regal and beautiful...and a nervous nellie to a degree. She totally took the heat off my Hunter dog... which was a blessing. Hunter was sick - and I had no idea at the time... so Molly allowed me to spend the time with Hunter that she needed up until the end. And an amazing transformation took place the day that we had to say goodbye to my faithful friend. That day, while waiting for Tim to prepare the place for Hunter to be buried...and in my saying goodbye... Molly came over, laid down next to Hunter and me...and when she got up, she was a different dog. I never again went without her at my side. She was a constant companion. Each morning when she would go out for her morning walk, she would run to the kitchen door and wait for me to come down and let her in.

She had a quiet way about her, and despite her size, she was as gentle as a kitten. She would sit in the car, refusing to leave, until she got a ride around the block...and this stubborn streak of hers was equally as funny when she would try to "hide" under the table...despite making the entire thing move as she tried to cower beneath it.

She was a TERRIBLE mama...and I say this in the most loving way possible. She had T-W-O puppies. TWO! I think she was as shocked to have puppies as we were...we had tried artificial insemination several times, to no avail...another story all in its own... but 60 days after the big ice storm... and a few weeks after I had put her on a diet...she was the proud mama of one very cute black lab and one very cute yellow lab. Grace and Sunny. She had to have a C-section she layed around moaning - not very happy about nursing them at all. She tolerated the puppies...and I am giving her a hard time. She was a pretty good mama. :)
(I loved the way her paws looked as if they had been dipped in gray hairs...She was perfect in every way.)
So then April. It has alway been my favorite month. Spring Break (growing up) birthday....sping in general...and as far as April's go, this one was shaping up to be a pretty good one. Sadly, I can't tell you many things about it now. I can tell you that I was on a bit of a high that weekend. I had seen Sarah Palin in Louisville. I had seen Steven Curtis Chapman and Michael W Smith in concert. But when I arrived home, I found my sweet Molly was not well. Not well at all.

I happen to be a firm believer that God cares about all things in our lives. The big things, and the small things. He cares about anything that is going on - especially if it is something that we are concerned about. This was one of those days.
We called my dearest friend Chris to the house to stay with the kids so that they wouldn't be afraid when they woke up. Tim and I drove Molly to the vet. I rode back in the back with Molly, holding her.

I prayed the entire way. I just wanted to be sure that I made the right choice - the best decision for her. I knew when we got there and "ran into" our usual vet and very dear friend at 5am, that it was God's way of letting me know what we needed to do, and that He was sending his own "angel" to help us get through this thing that I absolutely wanted to refuse to believe.

We cried and cried... the tears just didn't seem to stop that day... and they still come. But one things that I know more than anything else - and that I will always be certain of: I did right by my dog. She had loved me completely, totally and unconditionally. I did the hardest thing (for me) and yet the best thing - for her.
You might think that with 7 other dogs here to love and take care of...who would notice one missing? She left the biggest whole in my heart - and in my home. 7 dogs seems like such a small number - because I am missing that ONE that meant the most to me.
But the memories...I have so many and I am so thankful. My Sweet Molly... exactly 11 years after I drove you home to be mine... I had to let you go. Thank you for loving me and making me feel as if I was the ONLY ONE you had eyes for.
Rest in peace Sweet Molly - 12/28/1998 - 04/18/2010.

Three score and ten are given to men,
But ours is a much briefer span.
So, though I give you all my heart,
The time will come when we must part.
But all around you, you will see,
Creatures that speak to you of me;
A tired horse, a hunted thing,
A sparrow with a broken wing...
Pity -- and help (I know you will)
And somehow, I will be with you still;
And I shall know, although I'm gone,
The love I gave you lingers on.
(-author unknown)