He doesn’t say much but he is a great listener.
Dexter (formerly known as DJ) is a previously chained dog who was rescued from a shelter by Good Bones. He is currently with us on a “trial sleepover” but I don’t see this guy ever leaving us. He is a 2.5 year old Lab mix who looks and acts all lab, just a little bit smaller.
Have you’ve noticed that I’ve been away from the blog for a long time. (Hello?… have I lost all my readers?)
November was the first time I went an entire month without writing on this blog. Now here we are, the Ides of March, and I’m finally back!
My kids have been as funny and infuriating as usual, and news events have pique my ire, but even with all of this tinder, the writing spark just wouldn’t ignite.
How could I write about humdrum daily happenings when something so much larger was looming? The simple fact is that I couldn’t.
Someone very important to me has been ill and this has dominated my psyche since the summer. I write about what is going on in my life, what is occupying my thoughts. There has been a whole hell of a lot going on… but it hasn’t been my story to tell. Thus, I’ve been silent.
My loved one is now through the roughest of the rough and has started to shine anew. Once again, I can think about the mundane.
As is my trend, I had a rough winter. Here is an excerpt of a letter I wrote to my doctor trying to describe how I had been feeling.
I wake up each morning and force myself out of bed to get through another day. I feel as if I’m wearing a suit made out of lead and I have to use all of my strength to keep taking the next step; to wake the kids up, to smile and kiss them good morning, to pack their bags for school. Then I sit down and rest so that I can summon up more strength to get myself to go to work. Some days it takes me just a few minutes, some days it takes an hour. Other days I have a panic attack and can’t do it at all.
I’m not stressed, or overworked, or underappreciated. However, none of this matters. Even the easy things are hard to do when you are wearing a leaden suit.
People talk to me and I respond, but the smile takes effort. My muscles pull hard to make it happen. The words in my mouth feel off, like a movie soundtrack that’s slightly lagged. One step at a time, I make it through the day. At home I struggle to be “normal”, to ask about everyone’s day and try to remember mine. My reactions must be appropriate enough because no one seems to notice. After all that needs doing is done, I lie down for the rest of the evening because “Mommy’s tired”. Some nights I’m asleep before the children.
As is her modus operandi, my wonder doc immediately got me sorted out. We did a couple of medication adjustments and tried something off-label. The change is remarkable.
First of all, I got bangs…This sounds frivolous, but it’s not. This is me caring about how I look. This is me having the energy to style my hair in something other than a ponytail. This selfie (my first ever) is me feeling good enough to show you my face.
I have energy for the first time in a VERY long time.
This will sound insane to anyone who knows me, but I am now a morning person. Suddenly, the morning is my favourite time. I am appreciating the peacefulness of the house before anyone else is awake. I am writing.
I wake up in the mornings now and I want to take a walk, or go for a run, but I needed a buddy for that. I needed Dexter.
He is my favourite drug side-effect ever!
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Great to get an edition of Escaping Elegance, I have been missing them. Many times over the four years of ALS I grumbled to myself in the cold and rain walking Hudson but then I would come back, he would jump up on Darrell and he would give him a treat and I would knew he was the best thing that came from a world of worst. An now here I am, still grumbling in the cold and rain but so very grateful that Darrell had the forethought to not leave me completely alone. Hudson is my buddy, my confidant, therapist and best friend, as will be Dexter for you. Congrats on the new addition to your family!
Beautifully said, Deana. Hudson was a great side-effect of ALS! Hugs.
Nice to see you again! I also have a dog that does wonders for me as well. He is even my certified ESA (emotional support animal). If it wasn’t for that little boston terrier mix I probably would have followed through with my plan to commit suicide at the beginning of last summer. It is truly amazing how good they can be for all of us.
Thank you, it’s nice to be back! And thank you for sharing part of your story… I had no idea there were ESAs. Fascinating and fabulous!
You look AMAZING! Love the bangs and the selfie.
Super happy you are writing.
Lots of love
Thanks. Sorry I’ve been out of touch… but I’m back now! Love to you too.
Glad you’re back! My sister’s former dog, Ella, was her saving grace (almost literally) when she was going through rough times in her life. I have never underestimated the healing power of animals. So happy you have a new little buddy to share your life! P.S. Rockin the bangs!
Thanks BDN! Dexter was so excited to meet all of the neighbours this weekend and he thought you were “beautifully dressed” even in your PJs. 🙂
Yay …. happy to be reading your thoughts again! lots of love, S
Yay BFF!! So good to hear from you too. XOXO