In memory of Puppy Dog mostly known as PD

My friends Dik and Mary Ann lost their special boy PD yesterday.  I woke up several times during the night thinking of them.  I hate to even think of their pain but I hope they can find some comfort in knowing that they are wonderful dog parents and no dog had a better life than PD.  He was special.  He was always loved.

And this event inspired me to try to write about dogs.  Now I don’t believe I can do the dog-person relationship justice.  And I don’t think anyone who doesn’t have a dog could ever really get it but I’m going to take a run at this.

I got my first dog Dave when I was 37.  I remember thinking after a few short weeks that I had no idea what I had been missing.  I had spent years without a dog when I could have had one.  I find it to be one of life’s most rewarding experiences.  Dave was my baby.  I have his ashes sealed in a little green container and it’s going with me.  I still think of him all the time.  Dave spent a lot of a time in a blue denim pooch pouch – all 5 pounds of him.  I still have it.  Like a backwards backpack with an opening at the top.  I took him everywhere my little papoose.  He went grocery shopping and to Marshall’s, on errands, to all the local Connecticut events – craft shows and the Apple Festival, the fall fairs we have here every year, parades.  He went to work with me sometimes.  He spent a lot of time with his grandparents and his real parents Honey and Moose – quite the pair themselves.  I loved Dave with all my heart.

Honey and Moose lived with my parents.  Moose was a loveable little guy.  Sweet through and through.  Everyone loved Moose.  I loved him too.  But that Honey, she was my sister.   She was one special bitch and I don‘t mean like a dog bitch.  White toy poodle. No more than 8 pounds.  And she was the goddamn leader of the pack, get out of my way, the Queen is here, straighten up and fly right, walk behind me, I am in front fool, thank you for your cooperation, the end.  Now pet me.  I loved her a LOT.  She had “attitude”.

I lost Dave in March 2001.  He had kidney failure.  I didn’t realize he was sick; it came on and ended so suddenly.  And he was gone.  Just like that.  In a few days.  I cried Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday.  I woke up Saturday morning and started to cry again and then I realized I had to stop.  Just had to.  I was so tired.

I am driving home from work.  Why am I bothering to go home.  I don’t have a dog.  I should go out and do something.  But I’m 45 years old and I don’t want to go out.  I want to go home.  I drive into the garage.  I don’t have a dog.  I am walking toward the door.  I insert the key.  Why isn’t the dog barking.  Oh my god I don’t have a dog.  Repeat.  For days.

Then came Mike.  Mike from Springfield.  I liked him immediately.  He was rowdy.  That is why I picked him.  Silly me.  He was about 4 months old that afternoon I drove him home, and more than 25 pounds.  Not like Dave.  I remember napping one Saturday shortly thereafter and waking up to something.  And it was this.  Mike’s face.  Two inches from mine.  Over me.  Staring down.  His nose looked huge from that angle.  I’m looking into those liquid brown eyes and thinking I like you but will I ever love you like I loved Dave?

The answer to that is no.  Not like I loved Dave.  Different than I loved Dave.  But love him I do.  Mike is not my baby.  He is my guy.  Big and bold.  Silly and smart.  My dog has a sense of humor.  He is standing right here looking at me now.  Like a lunatic with a squished yellow tennis ball in his mouth.

Here is something I believe.  And this applies to my whole life.  You get out of things what you put into them.  I love my Mikey.  All 65 pounds of him.  I trust him.  He is beautiful to me.  I kiss him and hug him.  He sits right in front of me and looks up at my face waiting for permission to leap.  I pat the front of my chest and he jumps up and put his “hands” on my shoulders.  We dance in the living room and I sing to him wild thing you make my heart sing you make everything grooooooooovy.  And I get it back.  The love.  The trust.  The sense of fun.  One would never say Mike had a subdued personality. Like his mama.

It’s awful that our dogs’ life expectancies are so short.  But they are.  I’m thinking of you all now my beautiful boys and girls –  the ones who are not with us – PD & Dave, Tiger, Cricket, Honey & Moose.   And the ones who are still with us – Scooter, Ally, Shilo, Marty, My best boy Mike, Lady and the girls AKA Some Poodles, Hickory, Mack, Boo, Barkley, Rock.  And your dogs too.

So in honor of PD, I’m going to give Mike one of his favorite treats today.  His big red Kong with a couple of globs of peanut butter stuffed in there.  Two or three broken up dog cookies pushed inside and stuck to the peanut butter.  Or cheerios.  He likes cheerios.  And I’m gonna hug him and kiss him and call him good boy.  And I will give him the Kong and tell him this is in memory of PD.  He was a good boy too.


Therapy I

30 years old, I stagger into therapy.  I am preparing to undergo surgery in another month and I’m sure I will not wake up from the anesthesia.  Truly positive.  I know very few people die during a short routine surgery but I will be one of them.  I wake up every morning and move across the sheets to be next to my husband, breathing in the scent of him.  I am at T minus 30 days and counting.  After that, I will not smell him again.  I will not smell anything again.

I have been trying to get pregnant for over three years.  I was brought up believing two things absolutely.  The first – I can do anything if I want to badly enough.  The second – my mother’s voice repeats over and over in my head, “You know better than to feel that way”.

So here I am.  I have a laparoscopy scheduled to take a look-see at my girl parts.  I want to be pregnant more than anything on earth.  And I am wound so tight that I feel like I’m going to launch into space like a rocket and explode into millions of pieces and am totally unable to express this because I have no idea how to.  All I know is that I know better than to feel so desperate and unhappy.

And so it begins…

You’re so vain redux

Remember when

you asked me what I wanted for my birthday and I said inner peace and sex?  And you said me too!

you went exploring for an upgraded No-Tell Motel and found one that was cheap AND smelled like bleach?  yay!

you said I think all the time about making you happy?

you said I want the whole world to know about the woman I have?

we were in that restaurant and you were all dressed up in a sparkling white shirt and a beautiful tie and I shot that watermelon seed out of my mouth and got you right on the chin?  Direct hit!

we walked a long time and plopped down on the grass in the park and took a nap in the sun?

you smiled at me and said do you know what’s wrong with you?  I think I’m about to find out.  <smile brighter>  You think too fucking much.

you found those silly little salt and peppers shaped like feet with painted toenails?  I still have them.

I was in a bad patch and I told you I was having nightmares all the time and you brought me that beautiful dream catcher?  I still have that too.

we were playing cards and getting looped at our campsite very late at night and that huge honking skunk walked through and you said don’t make a sound and I didn’t and about two minutes later we heard the shrieks and laughing and that not-so-lovely smell came?

I said you are a twit and you kissed me and said yes but I am your twit?

I heaved your ass into a snow bank?  Hah!

I said I am so afraid of this cancer sometimes I can’t sleep and you said I will sit next to your bed all night?  I will be your sentinel.

you said when I’m with you, I feel like I’m 16 again?

I do too.  I remember it all.

Self-appointed hair critic to the world

Why do so many women dye their hair some freaking red color not found in nature?

Why do women with straight hair get perms?

Why do women with curly hair use flat irons?

Why do older women hold onto their long hair until long after they have passed the hag line?  Indeed, the long hair often speeds up the arrival of the hag line.

Why are so many young women flat ironing their hair and parting it in the middle?  This is not an attractive look for most.  Also why do they wear really low and tight hip-hugger pants unless they are model thin?  Can you say muffin top?  But I digress…

What is up with women, especially young chicks dying their black?  I have only known one woman with really really really dark hair and I’m not sure I would call it black.  Close but black?

Why do women dye and perm at the same time?

Why are dark roots “in style“?

Why do people grow out their hair and let it hang.  Get a style.  Do something!!!

Why do people whose hair is thinning dye it a really dark color so you can see their white scalps shining through like a street lamp?

Split ends.  NO!  Get a trim.

Comb-overs.  Really?  (It saddens me to have to post a picture of Carl Levin.  He is one of my favorites.  Big big brain.  No mirror.)

Rugs.  Really?

The Mullett.  Oh dear.

Pictures below.  That is all.  I have spoken.

On Aging. The Good. The Bad. The Ugly.

Some random thoughts related to aging…

I’m not a young woman anymore.  Some of that is very good.  Some not so much.

I do exactly what I want and I don’t worry about what anyone thinks about my doing exactly what I want.  That is very good.

I don’t care if my house is a mess.  Another goody.

I hate to rush so I don’t do it anymore.  Unless you count work but that’s OK.  After all, they are giving me money to do what they want.

I worry about retiring.  I’m afraid I’ll never be able to afford it and I would do it right this minute if I could.  Not because I feel old and tired, but because there is not enough time to read when you work.  Or hang with your friends and family.  Or go to Maine and sit in your spot and read.  Or walk the dog.  Or lie on the couch and read.  Or garden.  Or sit in your lawn chair and look at your beautiful flowers and read.

Arthritis adores me and has moved in for the duration.  Oh my hands.  Heberden’s nodes.  Go ahead.  Google it.  And my poor toes – especially the big ones.  And my knees.  And my back.  My shoulders.  As my old Aunt Elsie used to say – Be it ever so painful.  Oh my achin’ bacon.  Period, dot and dash.  This falls in the not-so-good category.

Aging slooooooows your metabolism.  I have traveled up and down the scale my whole life.  And now I know in my heart of hearts that if I want to lose weight and keep it off, slow and steady wins this race.  It took me a long time to believe this.  And baby, I’m winning.  It doesn’t matter how long it takes.  As long as I arrive and stay.  My health depends on it.

I am rarely angry.  I see it like this.  If I’m aggravated by some arrogant dork at work, I figure I’m getting paid to put up with him, so I let it go as quickly as I can.  In my real life, I try to just walk away.  Inner peace is a beautiful thing and I strive for it.  I want it.  I deserve it.

Menopause had a diminishing affect on my sex drive.  But when I do “couple”, it is always very good.

Hot flashes – not good.  But I don’t have to worry about getting my period at the US Open while wearing tennis whites.

I appreciate other living things in a way I did not before.  Animals.  We have domesticated so many of them.  My dog Mike.  Sometimes I think we read each others’ minds.  I see right into his brain through those shiny big brown eyes

My hair.  It used to be thick and curly.  And now it is neither.  Is still has some body so I can manipulate it.  But its much different and there is hair in the shower every day.  But its not very gray.  One good thing.

Insomnia will come to us all.  I didn’t know this, this well-hidden curse of aging.  So you young uns out there, appreciate that good night’s sleep you just had.  The up side of that, I have never seen so many late night pitch black skies full of stars.  And the sun rises right outside my sliding glass door.  I can watch it from my writing spot here.   (And may I mention Google Sky Map for smart phones.   If you love stars and haven’t seen this yet, you’re going to be very happy about it.)

Getting older can set you free if you let it.  Really really really free.  I love that.  If aging didn’t bring you closer to death, it would be the best thing ever.

I have learned it is impossible to change anyone.  Just think how hard it is to change your own self.

Attitude is everything.  Desire is everything.  Two things I believe.

I know anything is possible.  I know the worst thing ever could happen to me in 5 minutes.

I know anything is possible.  I know the best thing ever could happen to me in 5 minutes.

I’m hopeful for my future.