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Posts Tagged ‘Maddie’

Maddie Nails Me!To say I love Maddie is an understatement.  So when she was in horrific pain last night, I fell apart; the anxiety left me bereft and completely despondent. While I am more matter of fact with human illness, I become completely irrational when my furry critters are ill. Last night and this morning were no different.

With anxiety guiding my every breath, I worried that we would have to put her down. What if the pain was indicative of something horrific? What if we couldn’t afford the surgery? (Seriously, it didn’t matter that we didn’t have a diagnosis, I was worried about the cost of surgery.) What if I had to say good-bye to my beloved girl?

I know one of my sons would love if I was a little more worried about him whenever he is sick with a virus. For my family and friends, I seem to be so much more reasonable. Even though we have faced multiple brain surgeries in our house, I don’t assume that a bad headache is reason to check in with a neurologist or a neurosurgeon.

My furry children tend to be a different story. When my beloved Mukseh was alive, I would often forget she was terrified of thunderstorms and on one occasion I called the vet to say, I think Mukseh is having a heart attack. With her heart racing, I am not sure why I didn’t simply take her to the vet, but something inside of me must have realized that I was being an alarmist. When the vet called 15 minutes later, the storm was stewing and the vet was laughing. He suggested I try giving my girl Rescue Remedy; the funny thing is that we had it in the house. If you don’t know what it is, google it; I think everyone should have some in the bathroom cabinet.

Back to Maddie
With horrific pain traumatizing Maddie late last night and throughout the early morning hours, I knew I had to get her to the veterinarian first thing this morning. While I was not quite ready to trust what I was seeing, Maddie really did seem fine as we were heading out the door. And in truth, my memory of her early morning pain and the what ifs guided me to make certain that whatever had hurt her was not hurting her now. $70 poorer, I am so relieved that my beloved fur baby is healthy! While I may wonder what caused her so much pain, I know that humans have moments of pain and heal quickly too!

I can’t believe how fortunate I am.

Note: I felt so blessed that I had a few friends that were worried with me and almost as happy as I was to know that all is well with my Maddie.

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Note: I will be Counting the Omer for a total of 49 days, from Passover to Shavuot or from Slavery to Freedom. For many, this is simply the Counting the Omer; for others, it is a tool for exploring the kabbalistic teachings in an organized way. For me, it is a time to actively reflect on my Journey Towards Wholeness. The more I am whole, the more free I will become.  [http://t.co/dBPYjDxSGj . . . .]

Accepting Our Scars

A Personal Story:

In January, one of my dogs bit the tip of the other dog’s ear off; nothing like a dogfight  to alter what is.  Unfortunately there are a lot of wounds from that day, but I want to focus not on ‘the wounds’, but on some lessons learned post dog trauma.

Since that dark day in January, I have found myself worried about Maddie and her spirit, much more than necessary. For a time I mourned Maddie’s ear. At first, it was because it was bloody and sore; later it was healing and sensitive; and then one day it was fine. Maddie stopped responding to the injury (or is it the chomping?); I could touch her ear without receiving a pain response. Yay!

On the day that I first noticed this, I turned to Aryeh, my older son, and lamented that her ear will always be missing a part of it.  With that he looked at me sort of cockeyed and ask, do you mind my scar? I have to share that the question made me squirm not because I was guilty of feeling uncomfortable with Aryeh’s scar following brain surgery, but because I thought he was ludicrous.  I love Aryeh’s scar; it is a symbol of his fight for life and his ultimate thriving. His scar symbolizes one of the most profound gifts I have ever received. My son’s health restored and survival after years of critical health.

Aryeh and Dovi - imperfections together for blog

Since the day of that conversation in early February, I have looked at both of the creatures above with such immense gratitude for them being exactly how they are.

The conversation also forced me to look inward. How do I perceive physical wounds, body disfigurement, emotional challenges? How do I see the reality that surrounds me? How do I perceive my own blemishes or imperfections? The last question I will delve in tomorrow for my Omer Reflections.

So here’s the truth, I generally accept all people for where they are. Dogs too! But I must have a quiet voice inside of me that was challenged that day. It is important to note it and quiet it. And it is always important to watch my thoughts and what I actually say at any given moment. Words do matter and they have a chance to impact how we think and how we make others feel.

What a blessing to have both Maddie and Aryeh in my lfe!

May we all have a chance to find the beauty in each and every person, wherever they stand.

With love, light, and blessings,
Chava

Aryeh and Maddie on bed May 2015 Aryeh and Maddie in Snow Winter 2015

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Note: I will be Counting the Omer for a total of 49 days, from Passover to Shavuot or from Slavery to Freedom. For many, this is simply the Counting the Omer; for others, it is a tool for exploring the kabbalistic teachings in an organized way. For me, it is a time to actively reflect on my Journey Towards Wholeness. The more I am whole, the more free I will become.  [http://t.co/dBPYjDxSGj . . . .]

Loving Nature

Life can be totally overwhelming, yet I know that I have to take time to notice the world around me. Whenever I do, I am generally floored by what I am seeing.

Today was one of those days when I fell thoroughly in love with nearly everything I saw.

Everywhere I turned, nature called to me. The moment, I woke up, my dog Maddie started wagging her tail and showing how happy she was; the day before she had been so sick that I found myself afraid that she wasn’t going to be ok.. And then when I was on my way to an appointment, I saw a turkey vulture on a fence post. On my way home from my appointment, I had to swerve from hitting a turtle who was crossing the road.  Each of these moments brought me immense joy! I love when I notice nature as clearly as I did today.

And then on my way home from the store this evening, Dovi and I watched the lightening which felt like it was engulfing the roads around Louisa, Virginia. Even now, as I type this, the thunder is probably waking up anyone who is trying to sleep. The sounds are quite magnificent.

The bottom-line is that I always feel so much more whole when I am connecting with nature. I am thrilled to be part of a people that openly acknowledges the special moments in nature and in life.

The silence of the skies is profoundly telling; learning how to listen is the key.

The silence of the skies is profoundly telling; learning how to listen is the key.

“ברוך אתה ה’ אלהינו מלך העולם עושה מעשה בראשית”
Blessed are You, LORD, our God, King of the Universe maker of the works of Creation.

With love, light, and blessings,
Chava

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Note: I will be Counting the Omer for a total of 49 days, from Passover to Shavuot or from Slavery to Freedom. For many, this is simply the Counting the Omer; for others, it is a tool for exploring the kabbalistic teachings in an organized way. For me, it is a time to actively reflect on my Journey Towards Wholeness. The more I am whole, the more free I will become.  [http://t.co/dBPYjDxSGj . . . .]

Sometimes You Simply Have to
Howl at the Moon

Today was hard, really hard.

Many days have passed since I slept well.  Some of this is because I am struggling with the death of someone that was once in my family. At the same time, I am trying to figure out how I will make the move to Houston.. And through it all, I have holy work to do.

At dawn, after sleeping only a couple hours, I woke up to a really sick dog. My beloved Maddie wouldn’t eat, couldn’t drink, and was lethargic. In my worried state, I kept saying that all of us have moments we don’t feel good. Fortunately, she perked up, started eating ice cubes, and  eventually ate some dog treats, chicken and rice. And more good came when I had an awesome conversation with someone I needed to connect with via work. But then. . .

Tonight grew hard again when the exhaustion seeped into my bones yet I had to drive for over two hours so that I could try to navigate a potential challenge. Ugh! I had to go to the Staples in Charlottesville so that I could try to uncover my credit report; for some reason it is in hiding. The good news was that I was able to spend some time connecting with friends. And through it all, I also had to be present for someone in serious emotional distress.

Coming home, I was greeted at the door with a late dinner, a few minutes with my sons, a hot cup of chamomile tea, and a hungry, but happy dog. At the same time, I am feeling profoundly grateful to my new communities support in Houston!

Regardless of what type of day and evening I had, I realized that while the day had really hard moments, it also had amazing blessings too. And in the end of it all, the full moon was calling my name.  The moon was waiting for me to howl at it. So I did!

Moon May 2015

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Note: I will be Counting the Omer for a total of 49 days, from Passover to Shavuot or from Slavery to Freedom. For many, this is simply the Counting the Omer; for others, it is a tool for exploring the kabbalistic teachings in an organized way. For me, it is a time to actively reflect on my Journey Towards Wholeness. The more I am whole, the more free I will become.  [http://t.co/dBPYjDxSGj . . . .]

“Until one has loved an animal, a part of one’s soul remains unawakened.”
Quote by Anatole France
1 Feb 2015

For me being whole means allowing myself to connect with a world outside myself on a daily basis!  For me, that means spending time with my dog (nature and my kids work too).

Animals have a way of bringing out my most authentic self and ultimately an even more complete person in most every interaction.

What do you think about that?

With love, light, and blessings,
Chava

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Little Miss Molly decided to stop by for a visit tonight. The last time she came over was one morning last week when Aryeh let Maddie out for a quick pee and in came Molly while Maddie was still doing her business. What I love about this dog is that she doesn’t look at the time, she just decides it’s time to say hello to the neighbors.  Wouldn’t it be great if more of us felt comfortable enough in our skin to disregard ceremony and just knock or bark at our neighbors’ door.

At about 9:30 PM or so, Aryeh yelled to me that we had a visitor.  While I wasn’t feeling particularly social, I decided it would be rude for me to ignore whoever felt compelled to drop by.  Much to my surprise, our visitor put a huge smile on my face and more importantly brought joy to our Maddie.

So much for my grumps, they disappeared as soon as Molly made herself at home.

Sometimes it takes a visit from a special friend to help someone lose their bad mood.  At least it worked for tonight. 🙂

Molly on sofa

Little Miss Molly makes herself at home on the sofa while looking down at Maddie.

Molly on foot rest

Little Miss Molly is the queen of our house for the moment. Adorable! Don’t you think!?!

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Shachar and Maddie snuggled together on the many miles from Tucson to Louisa.

Shachar and Maddie snuggled together on the many miles from Tucson to Louisa this December.

On Friday morning, I had to make one of the hardest decisions of my life; I had to euthanize our beloved mutt for unpredictable aggression. After too many episodes with the final episode being the worst, I was forced to make a decision that is devastating to our family.  My heart is healing from saying good-bye to my precious Shachar and my body is healing from the pain I endured when trying to keep my beloved four-legged creatures from hurting each other (it didn’t work).

Just over a year ago, we found Shachar outside the local mall.  At the time she was nearly 20 lbs. underweight and terrified.  We adored her from the first moment we brought her home.  We weren’t sure if we would be able to keep her; Shachar cowered when we tried to pet her and she had no idea how to walk with a lead.  But it took only 24 hours for me to find her curled up on Aryeh, her head resting on his chest.  We were in love.  Even Maddie loved her!  But nearly 8 months after bringing her home, she turned on Maddie. For 5 months we kept them apart and trained each individual dog; we also hired an amazing trainer to bring the girls together and to work with us on doing this in the best way possible.  We were thrilled to have our family back in tact. Sadly, it didn’t last. . . . And the war wounds were too great.

While four days have passed, the emotional and physical pain has knocked me off my feet.  If it weren’t for the fact that Aryeh, my older son, is suffering even more deeply than I, I would have folded into a pile of mush.  Nearly each and every moment, I find myself willing her back into our physical world. I miss Shachar’s sweet presence; I want to feel her snuggles, her warmth, her heartbeat, her obtrusive nature. . .

Except for Aryeh’s profound sadness and Maddie’s (our other dog) sad and healing body.  Life’s realities have barely mattered; I have been almost numb to the realities of money or my own physical pain.  $400 poorer due to unexpected veterinarian fees and hoping that none of the injuries that I sustained need a physician.  (So far, so good on that front.)

What has helped has been my friends and my sons.  Within hours of our loss, our friends David and Jennifer showed up on our doorstep.  And my sons have been making me as many mint or chamomile-citrus lattés as I need to warm my heart and soothe my battered soul.  At times, Aryeh has had to hand me the cups gingerly and grab it as quickly as I finished drinking.  On Saturday, I struggled to hold my mug; I am still struggling with the pain and achiness that I sustained when I tried to save my dogs from one another.  Healing.  And while there was almost nothing that anyone could say, it has helped that nearly 125 friends have actively reached out and offered their love. (Facebook ability to document how many comments are generated does help for some things.)  There wasn’t much that anyone could say, but a few friend’s nailed it perfectly when they said:

You gave her love and she knew it. She did the best she could and so did you. 
Lynn M.

You loved her and gave her a home, she will always know that.
Sharon G.

“so sorry to hear this. Sending you love and condolences.”
Rain Z. and so many others.

Today was the first day that Maddie, Shachar’s furry sister, started moving with more ease.  While I was awake and reading at 5 AM, it took her until nearly 8 AM to start moving, The good news is that when Maddie did get up this morning, she seemed to be able to move, to play, and to bug us whenever someone was prepping in the kitchen. Yay for this huge gift! We are all getting used to a quieter house with no puppy energy; it is too quiet.

We will always miss the way that Shachar loved to wrap herself up to us – the closer the better.  If possible, she tried to rest her head against our heart.  Both Aryeh and I loved feeling her body against us.  Healing will happen, but in the meantime, tears will be falling for a long, long while.

Shachar doing what she loved to do most.  She really had no clue that she wasn't a lap dog.

Shachar doing what she loved to do most. She really had no clue that she wasn’t a lap dog.

Shachar really did need to be as close to us as possible.

Shachar really did need to be as close to us as possible.

 

  We love you Shachar – now and always.

 

 

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