Friday, October 28, 2011

Therapy Dogs

I can't believe that it's the end of October already.   One thing that grief has done to me is distort my sense of time.    Events that were a few weeks ago feel like they were months, or in some cases, years ago.   I'm desperately wanting to do some serious journaling about the last 8 months, and I go into every weekend resolving to do that.   I know it would be a very healing thing .... just to put events in chronological order and write up the notes that I have on assorted scraps of paper, napkins, church bulletins ... whatever happened to be handy when I thought of something I didn't want to forget.   Grief has a strange way of magnifying some memories and erasing others.   I look at some of my notes and go, "Huh?" because I have no memory of it, or the memory is inserted in the wrong place on my timeline.  I'm finding that journaling, while healing, is also very exhausting.  I can only do it for short blocks of time.

In the meantime, I have my therapy dogs.  No, they haven't gone through the official therapy dog training, and frankly, Princess wouldn't make a particularly good one.   She's too aloof.  (Quite a few people have told me that she has a cat-personality.)   But she can, at times, be very loving, especially at night.  She snuggles up along my back and it's very comforting to feel her there, especially now that the weather has turned colder and I have my flannel sheets on the bed! 

Dan and I connected in the MN River Valley for a
couple days just before he went back to China.
Dee Dee, on the other hand, is a natural therapy dog.  She could teach the class.  When I'm feeling sad, she knows it!      When my heart is heavy, she totally gets it.   She comes and sits by me, kisses my nose, licks my tears and rests her chin on my leg, looking up at me with big, sad eyes.   She is THE BEST. 

We had our annual wellness checkups this week and the girls are both in excellent health for their age.  They ran a blood panel on Princess (who is 12-1/2) and everything came back perfect.   Dee Dee had a good checkup too.   I was afraid that Dee Dee had gained weight this year, given the lack of exercise when things were harried at home.  But she was 29-1/2 lbs - exactly the same as a year ago.  And Princess was 25-1/2.   She is shorter and has a much smaller bone structure.  One thing that Tim and I have talked about for years was the possibilty that we could lose our parents and our dogs close together, given their ages.   I'm so grateful that I won't be facing that.    I need my little therapy dogs.

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