I am sick and when I am sick, I can't remember what it felt like NOT to be sick. I also can't imagine what it will be like to feel well again. For me, being sick is totally living in the moment. Sort of like being pregnant; but thankfully, not as long.
The worst (best?) part is that I don't even have something that can be treated by doctors or with medicine. I have a cold. A COLD. But it's a BAD cold, let me tell you. I've missed work - because no one wants me hacking up a lung while holding a baby. It's just not nice. I haven't smelled anything in days. I haven't had a good night's sleep in a week. I've bitten the heads off my husband and children so many times that Terry Pratchett would have a field day about their abilities to regenerate their own heads. Even my favorite tea is starting to taste like medicine.
* * * * *
On a different but sort of, not really, related note... I hate our dog. Our dog is about 14 or 15 years old. He was given to us by my brother, who found him abandoned at a rest area in Utah. During a blizzard. Maybe that little fact should have tipped us off, but we welcomed him into our home back in late 1996. And he's still with us. Don't ask me what kind of dog he is, because really, sometimes we're not even sure he's a dog. He's freakish. Here he is...
Don't be fooled. This may look like a dog. It may even look like a nice dog. But really, he is the angel of death.
In recent years, this dog has aged, noticably, though for years I called him Dick Clark, because I thought he would never get old. Now his eyesight is marginal and he's lost a few of his teeth. A few years ago, he began getting into the garbage. At that time, we still had our German Shepherd, so for the longest time, we weren't sure who was the culprit. We SHOULD have known because our Shepherd was perfect and never did anything wrong. REALLY! She was the best dog ever. Two years ago, when she died unexpectedly, I secretly wondered why it couldn't have been the OTHER dog. Why did it have to be the dog I LOVED and WANTED, rather than the one I only tolerated.
Ok, before you think I'm a complete ogre, I have loved this little dog. He has had his good points over the years. But now he is just bad. The garbage thing grew and evolved and now we are prisoners in our own home. And yard. This dog eats ANYTHING. Let me rephrase that. He eats ANYTHING. We locked up the garbage in the kitchen, but he can open cabinets and pick locks. We keep the bathroom doors shut. We keep bedroom doors shut. Problem is, in the winter, we heat with a wood stove, so we need the doors to remain open, or the only warm spaces in our home are the hallways.
So last winter, we put up baby gates so the dog would have access only to the kitchen and living room, which have been dog-proofed. But we also have a cat who demands access to the entire house. I won't go into the whole drama about the gates, but suffice it to say - we hate them. They are a nuisance. It's one thing to use a baby gate to protect the baby (or the house) for a set period of time, until said baby is old enough to go into the other parts of the house. But we have been dealing with these gates for years and this dog is still around. I think he might be immortal.
I even have proof.
I mentioned before that this dog eats anything. We're talking rocks, sticks, cat poop, toys, and chocolate (oh yes, he's stolen LOTS of it and didn't even get sick). He's sampled just about every plant and flower in our yard. I'm sure SOME of them have to be poisonous. Don't they? DON'T THEY?! We've had this little monster into the vet so many times over the years that he is known as "the repeat offender." I finally just gave them one of our credit cards for their enjoyment.
Why am I bringing this up now?
On Sunday, when I was really feeling sick and knowing I would never feel well again (just like I feel today), we went to church anyway, and came home to find that the dog had broken through ALL the gates and had shredded all the garbage in the house. Yes, all the doors were open, because THE GATES WERE UP. The next day, when I was home sick from work, I had to take my also-sick daughter into school late. I was gone maybe 20 minutes, but when I came home, the garbage had been attacked again.
Understand that we take our garbage out daily. This isn't some big stink. And we aren't putting raw meat or dog food or squirrels into our garbage. He likes tissues. And styrofoam. And gross bathroom stuff you don't even want me to mention.
Let me just say - that dog was ASLEEP when I left the house. For a while, I've thought this was part of growing old. You know, a senility issue. But this dog is smart. And conniving. He WAITS until we are gone or asleep. He NEVER does this when we are home or awake. Yes, he knows the difference. That is a smart and a very BAD dog.
Do you see why I hate this dog? And when I scold him, he looks at me as if he can't see me, faking blindness. Yes, I think he fakes, because he is evil like that. He has no problem finding the GARBAGE!
Ok, well that's pretty much the end of my rant. We'll keep this dog until his dying day or until we have to put him down (though don't think I don't think about doing it BEFORE he gets too old and ill to live).
* * * * *
On another, shockingly cheerful note, the trees are changing in Maine and as always, they are simply breath-taking. :)
Copyright © 2009 - Paulla Estes