Monday, November 29, 2010

Thank you!

Saying "Thank you" is hard for some. When I keep the door open at the Post office, I always expect a thanks! Driving the car and letting someone else go in front of me, I expect a wave of appreciation. In the grocery, I expect a "Thank you" from the checkout person.

Do I expect too much from humans? Am I overly fastidious about how I would like people to interact? Probably! It's hard for me not to take this stuff personally. I want to grab them and ask them "Under what rock did you just come from?" It is not for me to know what is going through their minds when they rush, rush, rush from one place to another. Did they just come from the hospital visiting a sick relative?
Did they have an argument with their kid/spouse/boss that made them want to scream? How many times did they take that aging parent to the doctor that week? What's really on their minds when the door goes slam in my face?

My friend, Delvis, just told a story recently about the incivility of someone she encountered on a "Black Friday" shopping excursion. She had her 80 something mother with her and was trying to hold the door opened at a department store for her. She's not too steady on her 80 something feet! A young-large-man blows by the two of them, in a large rush to get to the sales. Delvis, who just happens to be an accomplished attorney, gave him a piece of her mind. He cooly turned to her and said "You, too"! So much for offering advice to anyone boorish enough to not even defer to someone in their 80's! However, if you believe in the law of attraction, or Karma, the dude will have his day!

It takes so little to give a smile to someone who looks like they're having a bad day. It's not too much to offer gratitude for a job well done. A nice note or even sending flowers makes someone feel like they actually matter! A nod to the nice person who lets me in the line on the parkway acknowledges that we are all on this crazy planet together and why not be nice to each other!!!

We take each other for granted too often. Even at home, I forget to tell Bruce "Thank you" when he empties the dishwasher. He may not hear me, but I know I said it!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010


We had Lily for over 11 years. Our daughter brought her home from the Animal Shelter where we found our last dog, Mickey. Mickey made it with us for 18 years. The last two was our "hospice" work, taking care of a very sick animal that had no quality of life. And it came full circle again with Lily.

She had been sick and we feared she had Cushing Disease. It was confirmed by the doctor and they prescribed medication for her. Well, the script was written vaguely: "Twice two times daily" which would mean four a day, correct? Well, after three days on this stuff, she couldn't walk. She was peeing all over the place and couldn't eat. Back to the doctor we go. They kept her for four days, correcting what the meds messed up in her already-fragile system. We had her home for a day and returned her for blood work. Still messed up! Now she was anemic!

While sitting at the Vets office, we met this nice lady with red eyes in the waiting room, Mrs. Angelo. She was euthanizing her little 13 year old dog that morning. We saw how sick her animal was and what her fate would be that morning. Consulting with the vet, we asked if there was any way Lily could have returned to a healthy lifestyle. He said the life expectancy of a lab mix was 9-12 years. At that point, we made the decision to send her to her heavenly rewards, the Rainbow Bridge, they call it.

It was no easy decision. We cried and cried, holding her beautiful lab head, murmuring to her how much we loved her and thanking her for her years with us. We called our daughter before the "act" and she couldn't be there. I was sad for that but if we had another moment, it wouldn't have happened! We watched her go and held her for a few minutes longer. She looked quite peaceful--the best we had seen her in a while.

I know she loved us as much as we loved her. She was a great, great dog. She loved to run in the park, go for car rides and just be by our sides. She used to sleep on a chair next to my bed and her face was the first I saw every morning and the last before I went to sleep.

The last night she was home, I slept downstairs with her. She couldn't make it up the stairs to our bedroom. I slept on the couch with her bed next to me. Neither one of us slept much. At one point, the cat, Marvin, must have seen me dosing off because he jumped on top of my leg and took a huge bite out of it, scaring the heck out of me! Marvin loved Lily even though she didn't want too much to do with him.

We will have a little memorial service for our Lilydog when the family is gathered at Christmas. Till then, I have her bed, her collar and a picture of her as a pup in our living room. We will never forget her and know her spirit is still there, looking for scraps on the floor, watching for the squirrels outside and waiting for one of us to say "Car, Lily?"