Apologies in advance for rambling incoherant post. My parents got back from holiday the other week and found that their dog was sick. My Mum and Dad tried to give his stomach time to recover by feeding him chicken and rice (he was happy with this arrangement) but after a few days took him to the vets. On Thursday he was given pain killers and antibiotics and sent home, on Friday as he was in so much pain the vet suggested keeping him in where they could give him more painkillers and investigate further.
Over the weekend it became clear that he had kidney and bladder stones and problems with his liver. The vet couldn’t promise that operating on his kidneys and bladder would ease the pain, and even with strong painkillers he was still in a lot of pain. Yesterday my Mum and the vet agreed that the kindest thing to do would be to put him down. Everyone in the family agrees that this is the right thing to have done, but it is such a shock. It feels like losing a relative (my Sister and I called him our brother, and he was in my wedding photo’s), and for me at least seems to be making me think about the death of my Grandad eighteen months ago.
My parents rescued him when I was sixteen and he has been with them ever since, he had the most friendly and sweet natured personality of any dog, everyone loved him (even my cat loving, dog hating husband) he’s been all over the country with us on holidays and led a very happy life, playing with his toys (when Ben wasn’t playing with them), being cuddled, petted and treated (he loved toast and when Ben started eating stubbornly decided that anything Ben ate, he would also eat, including yoghurts, grapes and banana’s).
Over the weekend as it looking more likely that Ben wouldn’t see the dog again I tried to prepare him, I explained that the dog was poorly (he took this on board as the dog’s leg had been bandaged after the injections and blood tests) and that the special animal doctors were looking after him and trying to make him better, but, they might not be able to make him feel better this time.
My Mum was visiting us when the call came from the vets, so Ben saw my Mum and I upset and I explained to him that the vets couldn’t make the dog feel better and that they were going to let him die. I explained that he would be dead like the flies in the conservatory and that we wouldn’t be able to see him again but he would be in heaven with God, Jesus and Ben’s great grandad (I wasn’t going to get into a discussion about whether animals have souls and whether having a soul is a pre-requisite for getting into heaven when God is so compassionate).
You’re never sure at his age how much he has taken in but he suprised me by calmly remarking several times today that the dog was dead. Each time I’ve smiled and said yes that’s rights, its sad that we can’t see him but its good that he doesn’t feel poorly now.
I didn’t expect a toddler to grasp the concepts so clearly and so well but he clearly can understand concepts that I can barely explain myself (I have a half philsophy degree lol!) so I had better be careful what I say around Ben.
To keep everyone busy my Mum and I took the kids to Milton Keynes today. I hadn’t been in the shopping centre for a couple of months (we’ve normally just popped into the Xscape for lunch after a walk) and hadn’t been out mid week for longer (I last went mid week shopping with my Mum when Ciaran was about a month old before the school hols) and I was shocked at how empty the centre was. It’s always been busy, even mid week, but today there were hardly any people shopping, Ben was able to run through the exhibition area near John Lewis without hitting any OAP’s (My Mum ” Ben where are you running to?” : Ben ” Shops”).
After walking down one side and going to Mothercare (thick winter coat for Ben, toys for Ciaran, ideas for Santa) we took Ben to Burger King. Mum and I justified it as a reaction to the grief and a treat for Ben. He loved it (very differnt to my normal Boots meal deal offering when we are out).
Mum and I just had a small burger and chips meal and found our meals where the same size as Ben’s children’s Meal. He tucked into a cheeseburger (even eating the gherkin to my Mum’s amusement) and a bag of chips (I briefly considered fobbing him off with fresh fruit or veg, but knew it wouldn’t wash if Mum and I ate chips in front of him). He was especially happy with my decision to pay for a pot of BBQ sauce so he could dip each chip carefully before eating.
Last stop was Boots for new cups. I picked up a cheapy Boots sippy cup (just like the cheapy tommee tippee ones, but crucially blue this time rather than pink) and a larger tommee tippee cup called an Active Sipper, he would have to hold the cup without handles (his latest trick is to get his hands stuck between the handles and cup on his cheapy one) and tip it to his mouth. Unlike some of the non-spill cups I’ve got this doesn’t expect him to do something daft like bite or suck the side of the glass (I think!).
As poor hubby was at home sick with a throaty cold I kindly threw in a Vicks inhaler for him as well so all three boys have been well catered for today.
One final thought is – has my resignation been accepted? I emailed my manager on Monday morning (even if she was sick her PA would have read it by now) with my resignation and haven’t heard back yet, I know that there isn’t much to say but acknowledging that they have it and letting me know if the council wants me to pay back the occupational maternity pay (I’d bet money that will want that back) would be nice!