Let's see if I can elaborate on how much better I am feeling in these five-minutes!
Ready. Set. Go!
Our year of adventures had been going great.
With everything we had been doing and going through, at the same time, even a juggler can only handle so much.
Then November arrived!
By then, any free time I had had been consumed with Boo Bash preparations, birthdays, doctors, unexpected repairs, and replacements, and our next NASCAR adventure.
It was then that I realized every day was the same day of the week as it had been back in 2001. It had been like that all year and never noticed it until I began preparing for Thanksgiving. And it hit me, and hard!
And yes, that included 9/11! That date not only affected our nation but also our family. We were told, "2 days, 2 weeks, or 2 months!" when our mom entered hospice. With that call, our journey as caregivers began. Each day soon became a week, then weeks turned into a month. The day I had to leave her so to spend Thanksgiving with family in Arizona, it had been just 2 months and one week.
Add in the recent loss of Tucker, on 9/8/2018...
WHO ORDERED THE FLOODGATES OPENED!
It's had happened before, back in 2007, but I was distracted then with the birth of a new grandbaby, our fifth at the time. I don't remember the date effecting me back then like it did now. This year though, with Tucker's death so near, my emotions were so sensitive, and every memory that I thought or came across effected me.
Beep. Beep. Beep.
Didn't get very far!
Yes, we lost Tucker back in September, which created a chain of events within me that brought everything crashing down.
During October and doing the 31-Day Challenge, I danced all around what had happened, but I wasn't ready to write about him. It took me a couple weeks to even put together a tribute about him on FaceBook. I found it hard to write or make sense with what I was writing back then. So I didn't.
I had used our 40 adventures to distracted me from dealing with the loss of our 15-year-old sidekick...
Only we had made so many memories with him. Getting ready for the races that were coming up, I kept coming across things that kept him front and center on my mind.
Like the shirts, he used to wear...
Removing these items was difficult! Putting them in a safe box, I then pushed those feeling back down. I didn't have time for tears!
But the memories didn't stop!
There was a time when the big dogs stayed home, and only he got to travel with us. Here he is with Maybell, our chocolate lab we lost in 2009 from a brain hemorrhage, Jake the black flat coat retrievers/cocker spaniels, and his sister Abby died a month apart from old age.
Since this was his gang from the beginning, as we said good-bye to him that day, we told him to go run with the big dogs again!!!
Then in 2010, he had to start sharing the back seat with Bella. He wasn't too sure about it at first! But he soon learned she was just as cool as Maybell and they traveled well together for another 4 years.
His last time to the races was in 2014...
Though he is walking her with Bella, I carried him more then he walked. He just loved being on my lap when I was using my wheelchair for any of our long distance walkings. He would sit so proudly like he was the king! He was very popular at the track, and it wasn't uncommon for people to come up and say, "Hey, Tucker! What's up!" When it is said dog are magnets for meeting people, that was him.
And His last time on an adventure, the same year but in the fall...
After this is when he had a few strokes that got him off balance and finally resulted in some paralysis, but he still had pep in his step! Then last March we found him out by the pool equipment. He was still using the doggie door t the time, but it would be his last time. He was laying in the grass, unable to get up. For a few days, it was touch and go, but he soon perked up, but unfortunately, he had lost his sight. I hated to do it, but he had to be kenneled during the night, for his own protection. I would leave the kennel open during the day.
Kitty slept by his cage regularly. After four months his little body was tiring out. By this time he needed 24/7 care. We changed our routine around just for him. It was like being a first-time mom to a newborn. Any sound and I was awake.
With a two week trip ahead of us, it was time to make a choice. If I left Tucker with the hospice kennel, there was a good chance he wouldn't make it back home, and if he had passed while we were gone, I would have been devastated. I couldn't leave him for my daughter to tend to because it wouldn't be fair to either of them. By then his pep had taken its last steps days ago. Even his kisses disappeared. He was barely awake, and eating had stopped. I was praying God would take him, so I didn't have to make this choice. With only days left, I had to. With the appointment made, when we arrived, I wouldn't get out of the car with him. I really didn't want to be there.
I am so thankful and grateful for the tender care the staff at Arizona West Veterinary Clinic showed us. Their facility has a private room just for these things. It's like a family room with couches and chairs. It was a very peaceful and loving transition for him. He was ready, he just needed us to let him go.
So it's been just over 3 months now, and I am feeling a bit better.
With the New Year and the goals ahead, I am finally at peace with our choice.
Since I am feeling better, and as I had planned last year, I want to see if I can do a FULL year of FMF.
See ya next Friday, which is really this Friday!