Friday, June 22, 2007

I will be taking a little time off from the blogging world, taking care of some gastro-intestinal 'repair' work (and the emotional strain that comes with it). I may share a lot but some things are far too personal and this is one of them. I've waiting for the proverbial other shoe to drop for some time so this is just another 'thing' in the pile. I've known it was time weeks ago but I try to keep the really bad news to myself... I feel like Captain BringDown these days and that makes me feel even more guilty than I have been feeling already.

When I was a teenager, a psychic told me that I would live to be 52 but I didn’t believe her. Aren’t they all liars and charlatans? I underestimated her. The stomach pain, the bleeding, the vomiting, the 'other' gastric problems are all reminders of that underestimation, I am learning. If I'm lucky, that gives me just under 9 years but since losing my lucky rabbit's foot on KittyHawk all those years ago, my luck isn't what they call in the betting world a 'good hand'(And since I’m being so candid, wanna see photos of my small intestine? No? Didn’t think so…). If you ate today (and kept it in your body), be happy. I've been like a walking milkshake machine in the past couple of weeks - whrrr and pour...yeah, graphic... I know. Sorry.

The upside (if it can be called that) is that it is giving me a chance to take stock and to re-build what time I have into something that is authentic and mine. No more 'have tos' or typical female guilt, just a more solid (if shorter) life. Enough!
Leben ist kurz so wir muß anfertigen es weit, mein Zeyde erklärte mir. Er war zutreffend. He usually was. I don't have time to waste. I only want positive, loving people who want to be with me in my life. It may be short but it'll be all mine.

I enjoy chatting to this little virtual group and it has kept me going when "the hills were steeps and the weather rough". I love reading your blogs and hearing about your lives, you good hearted people. I hope to come back one day, healthier. The good thing is that I can better understand why my body has been letting me down over past couple of years. It's not stress or 'in my head'. It's been a little like opening your closet door as a kid, seeing the fur and the glowing eyes and declaring 'see, there really was a monster there!', to your parents amazement. To my tiny little circle of friends, the people who sound happy to hear from me - all I can say is 'I love you'. I don't say it a lot but I only say it to people who matter to me so, "I love you".

I am dropping a number of gifts and swappy stuff of in the Post (well, actually K the younger is. I need to sit still) so keep your eyes peeled, Kathy, Taz & Antigone. They're on their way :) I've got K working on the Etsy end so those shipments went out this morning.

I'm so tired, I wish I could sleep forever :)

Monday, June 18, 2007

Thank you

I want to thank you for the love and kindness that you have all sent our way during this horrible time. Our house is missing a brother, a son... I often called him the 'canine love of my life'. He was my Dude, my sweetheart, my dog.

My heart is heavy and I am trying to keep busy so that I won't feel his absence. I want to see him come around the corner so that I can ask him if he wants a hug. I want to stroke his long, silky muzzle and make his ears stand up. I want to see him laugh when I sprayed him with the garden hose. I want to apoligize for giving up.

I hope that he finds peace after this turbulent life. I will always regret that I couldn't find a way to make him whole. I broke my promise to him, to make it all go away, to make him a happy dog.

We are starting a foundation to continue our efforts to punish animal abusers. If Jack's first year had been safe, he would have stood a better chance to living a whole life. In the past, I have lobbied, called Members' of Parliament and Senators' offices, marched on the Hill and made noise to draw attention to this unacceptable problem. Now, I will find a way to put money behind this cause and make the lawmakers pay attention.

Please - do not stand by when an animal abuser can get live a 'normal' life but get to punish a dog like Jack every day, for the rest of his life. Even though that man was not in his life for 6 1/2 years, Jack lived in terror that the abuse would start again, that someone would attack him, that every noise would signal the start of the next barrage. Let's change our animal protection laws worldwide, together. Jack would be proud of all of us if we can do it. I owe it to him.

Saturday, June 16, 2007


"it" has been done. I do not feel peace. I am not proud of myself. I miss my dude, my constant companion, my agility champ. I promised him that I would heal him. I could not.

I hope that there is a heaven, where he will find peace and loving hands. I wish him a light heart and kind words in his ears. I wish him that dock to sleep on, watching the water that I had promised him so long ago. I wish him peace.

I fear that I have betrayed his trust in me

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Sometimes a girl just needs the open road

So after dropping K the elder off at work this morning (and stopping to shop for new patio chairs), I took to the road. Heading up to Pakenham, through countryside, farms and bush always makes me feel alive so off I turned. My foot found the accelerator and dropped….and lifted, looking quickly for the brake. Without any warning, a car filled to brim with Opas and Omas (ok, only 2 of each actually but you know what I mean) cut in front of me – no signals, no warning. Now, the old me would’ve found a way around them, waving my fist high as I passed – probably imploring them to get a clue. Um, yeah…about that – this is why being a Type A country girl DOES NOT WORK. Reconfigure if you move, like I did, to HeeHaw County. Reconsider your attitude before you pack that moving truck. The ‘new’ me just changed velocity to match and kept on going, right behind them. The driver was so out of touch that he failed to see the rollers approach a toute vitesse and he didn’t pull over the way the rest of us in line did to let the Popo pass. Yup, this must have been the first time he’d been behind the wheel in years – and I knew how he felt

With so much work on my plate and Jack’s new found craziness, I haven’t been able to leave the house except when I absolutely need to – like yesterday, for a major waste of time, uh I mean basic (yes, you heard me correctly – basic!!! WTF!!!) First Aid training, for a bunch of freakin’ first responders! At least update our skills with the standard training or even take it up a notch further so that we can actually do more when disaster strikes. I sat through story after story about the facilitator and tried to pay attention. When it came time to move bodies and put people in the recovery position, I had asked to be left out. I mean, I know my stuff from years of patrol skiing and 1st response training so… I tried to explain that if I damage my arms (which aren’t working too well right now anyways, in this ‘season of flare-ups, as I affectionately call our hot sticky summers), I won’t be able to drive or work. Give me a friggin’ break already. So who do you think was first called upon to move a body? Or to be the body? Yeah… I know – stupid knows no boundaries. Like I need someone dragging me by my freakin’ “I will be screaming as I tear your face off because you’ve hurt my arms and I will feel no remorse as I do it” arms. Have you never dealt with physically-challenged clients, you mentally-slow-a-tortoise teacher?!? My body may not work too well but keep it up and I may risk the pain to boot your sorry butt around the parking lot.

Where was I??? Oh yeah, getting out of the house. I cut myself a little slack and drove up to Upper Dwyer Hill and turned around to head back, blasting Frank Black and Kim Deal (ok, Joey Santiago was probably there, and that Dave dude but Kim Deal! Frank Black!). I sang along to all of my favorites and let my energy out. P, if you felt your ears burning, it was me serenading you all of a 4 day drive away, taking liberty with “havalina” to sing out “Pav-a-lina”. Hey, it was out of missing you so it can’t be all bad, eh? I gave myself permission not to worry about how Jack was destroying his kennel or breaking his teeth trying to escape. I needed an ‘out’. On Friday with the approaching storm, I ended up medicating him pretty heavily – 2 valiums (yes, you have read this correctly – 2) and he still exploded around the house, trying to scratch through walls, doors and anything else that got in (what he perceived to be) his way.

We’ve have really woken up to this new reality – he will never be whole. I feel like I haven’t done enough but my Vet reassures me every time I speak with the office that she’s never known any other family to do so much to help a sick dog out. Most people get ‘rid’ (huh??? Can someone explain this concept cuz I’m at a loss) of dogs that aren’t even as damaged. She commends us with every reassurance but it just adds to my feelings of loss and of guilt. If 2 valium don’t do the trick, we’re toast. I’ve tried every behaviour modification in the book (and tapped into a lot of ‘dog-people’ knowledge, begging for a clue in how to fix this).I’ve dragged him to every type of training session, changing my own behaviours to suit the message of the session. Now the chemical modification that I resisted for so long (almost 7 years), the one thing that we could keep as a last resort has failed. We looked at each other today and decided that at the moment, with the way things stand it is only a matter of when. Our Vet is the most humane person I have ever had the pleasure of knowing and when she told us of our options, it was the first one out onto the table. I was in disbelief because I always thought I could repair him. Now, I am without that beacon of light. Repair is out of the question. We’ve modified everything in our lives and in his – to watch the 2 boys, it’s hard to believe that they live in the same universe. Nash is Capitaine Décontracté, with his Zen outlook of calm and Jack is Manic Man, flailing around and tearing at the fence to get to the walkers who like to stroll down our hill. BECAUSE OLD PEOPLE ARE SOOOO THREATENING. My 2 dogs are a study in contrasts. I know that I tend to go at length about Jack and his ‘issues’ but where else can I discuss this openly. Right now, I can assure you that there probably even readers out there thinking that I haven’t done enough. No one has given up more for a dog – no visits from people who might frighten him, only people whom he already knows and doesn’t mind too much. No long stays away from him so that he doesn’t break out and go looking for me like he when I was stationed on the other side of the country for weeks at a time. No parties at the house. K the younger’s friends have had to stay away as much as possible, except for the calmer ones like Silent B (what a good kid). No nothing. I am a dog person. I have built a dog-loving family. We would go without anything for their well-being. K the younger will even forgo sleeping in if I need to go out on the weekend, during the day so that Jack has someone with him. He has broken out through a 6” cat door – how he fit, I have no clue. He has thrown himself through closed windows and shattered glass all over my dining room. We were so lucky not to have had him cut himself too badly that day. He has eaten doors and clawed through an 8” oak door, all in attempts to free himself. The sad thing is that he has no clue why he does this and once he escapes, we find him quivering on the side steps, trying to get back in again. He is lost.

I can accept but I do not like my new reality.

Friday, June 08, 2007

My middle name must be 'horseshoe'

Cuz I'm just THAT lucky!

The unabbreviated version of "mofo" seems to be the word de jour with the construction freakazoids today. My office is filled with the dulcet tones of "Mofo-o-rama". It's 'mofo this' and 'mofo that' - 'move that mofo-ing ladder before I crack you on your mofo-ing head, you dumb ass mofo" - you get the drift. Intellectual banter always raises my spirits and to be surrounded with such virility....oooooohh *swoon* How lucky am I! I envy me for getting to live this exciting life ha ha ha
Deluding myself is just one of my many charms!

I have a friend (for argument's sake, I call him "Keith"...oh wait a minute ...better come up with a name that's not actually his...oh crap...WTF, "Keith" it will be - sorry dude)
Keith liked to call me "mofo"; despite my protests, whenever things got silly, out would come this unfortunate expression. Finally, I asked him why he kept calling me this - he said 'cuz yer silly'. Whhhhaaaa?!? Well, I never! Has the sun seeped through your giant bald, "Sam the Eagle from the Muppet Show" head to cook your brain?!? Has an earwig descended into your ear canal and chewed out the common-sense receptors? Would a knee to the groin help with these thought processes?

Think of the color of his face when I finally asked him if he knew what it meant. Nope. Not a clue. No freakin' clue. Dufus was calling me this but had never questioned what it stood for. After I removed my knee from his testicles, ummm, I mean "corrected him", he apologized for years of this unknowing verbal abuse.
Men - can't live with 'em; can't murder them in their sleep....cuz ain't no one worth doin' time for.

Oh for the tranquility of my wild back garden!

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Free Time? Yeah right!

Holey moly cow - has it been a week already!?! Jeezum crow - I haven't stopped since last Saturday afternoon. I wrapped up some emergency response training on Saturday morning and headed home to K-Man. He's still being called "Limpy MacWhiny" but he's less high. Not so much (ok, a lot of) codeine and lots of sleep have taken a lot of the edge away and he's almost back to his own unique form of normal. Pat & Val came home for a quick visit and some loving - Pat's tat was glowing under his sleeve so I decided to snap a shot - Yes, you are reading correctly... why, you ask? So that he 'remembers to brush his teeth'. Yup, that's my kid. A friend of mine told me that she suspects that he's a lot like me. What should I make of that???

I have been doing a lot of this thing called "working for a living" and secured a nice little contract this week - good stuff to keep me working for the next month or so. It's small potatoes for a lot of people in my field but it's just the right size to keep me busy (and in the black). I love being productive. I even managed to complete a pair of Hedera socks in a soft blue baby yarn. Shhh can you hear that? It's my lovely socks blocking in the other room.
Hmm...what else??? Someone I care about but haven't spoken to in a while called up to ask me to help coordinate another project. Turns out that they were just diagnosed with MS. I didn't know how to express my regrets about this. This is very vibrant person who exudes energy and life force. Not someone to be slowed down by an uncooperative body, that's for certain. Another friend went AWOL and turned up last night in Edmonton - huh? But she called so all is good (All I do is nag you, kiddo). And - BIG *AND* I made my first Etsy sale (Thanks, R!!!! Did I say 'ty' yet - just one million times, eh? Okay, I'll quit now).
I keep meaning to post pictures of my loot from Angelique so here ya go

Isn't the coolest thing EVER!?! I use the coasters every day in my office and they always make me so happy - thanks, Girl!
Taz is next in line for this wonderful experience. I just hope that I can live up to the great things that have gone before. I'll work on it ;)

(OK I had to edit this post - I mean "they was.."???? Now do you believe that English is not my native language???? Jeeeeez!)

Friday, June 01, 2007

100 Posts? Already???

I cannot believe that I’ve wracked up 100 posts already…how on God’s green earth did I manage that? It’s been a strange year, with lots of dips, doodles and bumps in the road. I’ve knit.I’ve drunk.I’ve been good. I’ve been bad.

Over the course of 8 months, I’ve opened 2 businesses, attended to sick partners and pets, fought bad guys and bullies, hugged good people and small people, sometimes wrapped in one package. I’ve gardened in the dead of winter, tried to guide my boys and to remedy a mentally-ill dog. I’ve played tug-of-war with a strong Lab puppy and had him play ‘keep away” with my possessions. I’ve built flower beds and fences, cried tears of frustration and happiness, cleaned up after cats, dogs & peoples of all sorts and sizes. I’ve wiped ‘varnish’ off of my clothes after getting licked by Nash (yummm, Lab spit!); I’ve even ‘done work’ and generally tried to keep my poop in a group. Life moves on and so do blogs. When I started posting, knitting and the occasional (shut up, MC) glass of vino capped a good part of my days. Not so much right now – research, writing and spending countless hours on the phone are no match for a nice Pinot Noir and some squishy merino. The drone of my ‘colleague’ (she who never shuts up, or “swnsu”) is no match for the clack of my bamboos as I slip off another row of my sock. Life moves on.

I know that everyone says this but what I find fascinating about our brave new electronic world (as Huxley spins in his grave – sorry, dude), is the camaraderie that forms when we read someone’s post and immediately identify with the sentiment. Whether in Zambia, Scotland, Mumbai, Delaware or the frigid wilds of Co. Lanark, we are all more alike than we are different. If you’re worried that this is going to slide into the mush of girl-speak and virtual love, you’d better leave now. Ha ha too late! Sucka!

I started this little journal as a means to get some things off of my chest, to converse with myself throughout a painful experience that eventually has become just another learning experience. I never thought that I would have conversations with so many people, whether through their blog or through mine. I never thought that I’d receive and send parcels all over the world or that I would be delighted to share silly details and inane conversations that roll through my pea-sized brain. I was especially ignorant of how many smiles I could garner from an errant hour (or 8) on the inter-web.

There are more good people around us than not-so-good, more love than hate, more understanding than dissent. Seeing this reality is a gift.

Speaking of monkeys, so far the choices for my ‘name my fete-abration’ are:

7. My Kick Ass, Knock your Grandma Down 3rd annual 40th Birthday Bash 5 votes

13. The Cops Ain’t Bin to my House since Grandma was Arrested, so let’s give them a reason to visit-fest 3 votes

14. Y’all Get Real Drunk, Y’hear-fest 2 votes

9. One Tequila, Two Tequila, Three Tequila, Floor-fest (a dear friend recommended changing this to 1 tequila, 2 tequila, 3 tequila, “whore-fest”. Remarkably, he is still alive. For now)” 2 votes

1. Leave Your Beer & Wine (now SCRAM)-o-rama 1 vote

8. Bothering the Neighbours Since 1964; why destroy an ancient tradition-fest 1 vote

10. Sharkey & Muffin’s White Trash Bash (“it won’t start when I shut it off so she has to get the beer. She slips it on the front seat and she quietly says to me….” Sing along if you know it)1 vote

No one voted for RootBeer-fest 2007. Not one single person. No one wanted to keep my neighbors awake but several of you had no objection to knocking Grandma down. What does that say about you lot (insert wagging finger here)

Sorry, Taz – Tea with the Queen-abration is out of the question. K refuses to slip into a Beefeater suit, not even for the privilege of wearing that kooky hat. It's always hard to keep him clothed at parties.

Keep the votes coming; I'll have the results in a week or two

From what I gather, our much loved Willie is on the mend. We send him love and thanks for many years of fine music and smiles. Here’s to many, many more. Maybe this rest will allow for some more song writing and a new a new album. To tide you over, here’s a little video (personally, I think that he does a better job of this tune live but I’m a fan).