Sunday, April 23, 2017

Staying alive by keeping the flame lit

Its taken awhile to get things back to normal. But now I've begun to wonder what the new normal is supposed to be as opposed to the old normal. This blog is a perfect example of the conundrum. I fully expected that whatever frequent followers I had would slowly drift away and never come back if they came here and found nothing to read or look at. There just happened to be too many tragedies within a short period of time that sort of left me a bit shell shocked.

I don't want to dwell on the subject too much or too often but almost at the same time when Ruff started generating expensive medical bills, old man Axl had a couple of severe seizures and had to be put to sleep. I said back then that this was going to be a very bad year and it certainly was. But I was determined to stop it from getting worse. I had to do whatever could be done to keep my big guy Ruffin alive because I needed him. A friend of this blog suggested I start a Go Fund Me campaign and I did but it only raised a fraction of the total cost of the medical bills for Ruff. So I created a page on Facebook to help spread the word but while I received hundreds of "Likes" and "Hearts" I don't think it added much to donations. It would seem that too many people on Facebook failed to realize the importance of "Sharing" the news I was trying to spread around. At least I was getting some beneficial therapy from reading the comments to my postings there. The kind thoughts and words and prayers helped keep me going.
If there was one benefit that I could point to from all of this it was the new friendships I made with some of the followers of this blog that I had never communicated with before. I was humbled to read a few of their messages and how similar they sounded. How they stumbled on this blog years ago and how my stories and photos brought so much joy to their lives that they wanted to return the favor. Reading thoughts like that did more to lift my spirits than anything. And surprisingly they came from all walks of life from all over the world. A wonderful young woman from Minnesota who has since become a cherished pen-pal, another from Malaysia, a third from Australia and the Isle of Wight in the United Kingdom and from North Carolina and a retired college professor from Virginia and an old friend from Arizona and a long time friend from South Africa. They have all helped me stay alive by letting me become part of their lives.

Then the double whammy hit here at home. My beloved Jacqueline's health took a turn for the worse and while the hospice nurses were not making any predictions I knew it was not going to turn around. The day after Ruff came home from the hospital Jacqueline ended her 10-year battle with Alzheimer's and passed away in her sleep on Sunday, March 19th. And my world turned upside down.

So began my adjustment to a new life living alone with my remaining two best friends but no more human companionship. But now I had a new job being Ruffin's nursemaid and his seeing eye human.

With a spate of bad weather keeping us indoors there wasn't much going on in the way of writing funny stories about my Rottweilers so I began to retell the stories about how this love affair with them began.

Luckily I have tons of photos taken over the years so at least I had some material to work with. And the wonderful memories that go along with them.
Therapy comes unexpectedly in different sizes, shapes and ways. 



  1. You really have had a rough time of late, I'm glad that your blog and your followers (of which I am one!) have helped bring you some peace or comfort. I'm so thankful you've got your Rottweilers to keep you company and, I'm sure, they make you smile even at times when you don't want to smile. My thoughts and prayers are with you as you find your footing and make your "new normal". It will take some time, but you will find it.

  2. Hey Nelson... Always here for you, even if there is sometimes gap in communications...
    Hugs From South Africa