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An Awful Few Days, with Some Joy Sprinkled In

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Losing Lola was more difficult than I could have ever imagined. I think what makes it more difficult is that Du is taking it so hard. We have held each other and cried together many many times since Saturday and the tears are always close at hand. Everyone grieves differently. I think that is why so many couples split up if they lose a child. I want to talk about her and look at pictures and remember everything I can about her. Du cannot bear to hear her name and will not speak it himself. He will not look at her picture, it hurts him too much. But there is no danger of a split here. We love each other so much and support each other's grief style too. We just hold each other and cry together and grieve in our own way.

I know he was grilling burgers for the party-goers when the accident occurred. The grill has sat outside ever since. Yesterday I drug it back into the garage. I know he couldn't bear to touch it. I'm afraid it will be a very long time before he will be able to grill again, which is probably okay. Neither one of us needs to eat that grilled food anyway--nitrites are cancer-causing. We are careful not to get anything charred...but's just not that healthy.

He used to play solitaire constantly on the iPad as he watched TV. He hasn't touched the iPad since the accident. I know it's because he associates it with Lola. She would sit on his lap and put her paw on the iPad as if to say, "Stop playing and pay attention to me!" He used to complain. Now we would both give everything we own to have her back doing that again.

Yesterday was Du's 61st birthday. It was not a good day. He woke up in the early hours, with a clogged catheter. We had just been to the ER early Thursday morning, and now just five days later it was clogged again. We were pretty sure he had a urinary tract infection (UTI) and the nurse even mentioned that last week in the ER, but they didn't do any tests. Du's urologist seems to think UTIs are part of having the catheter and are not important, but they tend to make Du feel horrible, and I think also contribute to his catheter clogging. At least this time they tested for a UTI and sure enough he has one. So he got another new catheter, and some antibiotics to treat the infection. I had not been able to sleep before he woke up about 2 yesterday morning so basically didn't sleep at all that night. Du did sleep from about 11-1, so it was a short night for him too. We got home from the ER about 5:30, and he HAD to go to work. It is Cornhusker Football season at the University of Nebraska Print Shop where he works (as it is everywhere in the state--first home game is Sat.), and they have lots of printing to do to prepare. Of course nothing from the Athletic Dept. comes in early, it is always a rush job and there was no way he could take the day off. So with his low energy level from the shots he gets to fight the cancer, and only two hours of sleep, off he went for a full eight hours of work. Isn't he amazing? I went back to bed and slept for about four hours. We both overslept this morning!

The family always goes out to eat to celebrate birthdays, but Du requested we postpone his birthday celebration since we are both feeling so low. We will go out next week,. Our 43rd wedding anniversary is Wed., so might make it a joint celebration.

Not everything has been a downer in our lives. We were celebrating our beautiful forever granddaughter Mia's adoption and 4th birthday Saturday. We went to court with her parents Friday and watched the final adoption proceedings. The judge gave Mia a teddy bear. I'm sure adoption is one of the nicest things they get to do in Juvenile Court. Afterwards we all went to lunch, including Mia's maternal grandparents, who are an absolutely wonderful couple. We love them like family. In fact Cherry, Mia's maternal grandma, is the one who suggested we go out and get a new puppy the very next day after we lost Lola.

Turns out, it was good advice. Monday night we drove to a small town about 100 miles from Lincoln and put money down on a 5-week old Bulldog female puppy. We will be able to bring her home on Sept. 7 and can't wait. I dread having to go through all that training again, housebreaking, etc. and I also embrace it joyfully. Seeing those puppies helped us so much and the anticipation of having a dog in the house again helped us both so much.

We are both still really sad and will never forget our beautiful, wonderful, perfect Lola, but together we will get through this.

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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    So sorry about Lola, but enjoy your new puppy. What a cute face!
    1658 days ago
    emoticon emoticon emoticon chris
    1659 days ago
    1660 days ago
    Your new puppy is such a sweetie. I hope she brings you lots of joy! Well, I don't hope, I KNOW.

    I just posted on your other blog. My husband took my dog's death really, really hard, too. He stayed at home with Sammy at the end, because he needed constant care, so when Sammy was gone, he'd lost his friend, his companion, and his job, too. It was weird, because we got strength from the other's weakness, I think. If I started crying, he was strong in comforting me, and if he started crying, it was vice-versa. It's rare that we both cry at the same time. But we still cry most everyday.

    I hope that we are able to get a new dog soon. I just want someone furry to hold at night when I miss my Sammy the most. Not a Sammy replacement, just someone to give me joy and comfort. I wish you and your husband the best.
    1660 days ago
    I am so sorry about all your husband is dealing with, and you too.
    We thought we could never replace out little Tammy after she passed, but then began to miss the joy of just having a dog in the house brought to us, with their unconditional love. Within 2 months we were looking for a new family member, and somehow ended up with 2 from 2 different shelters.
    Sadly we learned the 2nd one, we named her Julia, has 2 forms of cancer. we were told that removing her spleen and going through chemo would at best give her 1 more year of life.
    We decided comfort care and love was the better option for her. It has been 7 months and she is still with us, still happy to go for walks and still loves to eat! When she no longer wants to eat or go for walks we will have to look at other options, but for now I am happy to wake up each day to her goofy face.
    The other one we named Lily, she is my shadow. She even sleeps with me, which was something I never allowed before!
    I love them both dearly.
    Congratulations on both new members of your family, your grandbaby and your new puppy. Love is already over flowing your home again, and Lola is happy for you too!
    God Bless,
    1661 days ago
  • JACKIE15108
    Maybe the day you bring home the new puppy you can have Dru's birthday....a shared event..
    1661 days ago
  • NEWME654
    I'm glad you found some joy in all of this. emoticon
    1661 days ago
    Awe, happy Birthday to Du, and big hugs to you guys and your new little love.
    1661 days ago
  • LINDAK25
    Happy Birthday to Du! Hugs to you both. Enjoy your new fur baby.
    1661 days ago
    I loved seeing the smile on both of your faces. It is a blessing that you can now look forward with happy anticipation of your new family member. You will always cherish Lola and the things she taught you both. I loved seeing her grow up,through your blogs and pictures and I so look forward to see your fun adventures with this one. Can't wait to hear what you name her! Hugs to you and Du.
    1661 days ago
    Congrats on the new puppy!
    After I lost my almost 18 year old cat Daisy to cancer, I got a new kitten, Timmy. Timmy wasn't a replacement for Daisy of course, but he helped me to heal. Because of him, I made sure that I was taking care of myself so that I could take care of him.
    1661 days ago
  • 4KWALK
    I know you must be going through tears, anger and many other emotions but it helps that you can grieve together.
    Here we have lost three dogs in the last 20 years, one was by cancer, another old age and the third by car accident. I think the hardest one to deal with was the accident one. We will always have warm memories of our furry family members and we always open our home to another dog who needs a forever home.
    It is great that you are going to get another dog, she will help you at the many times when you need a furry family one to hug.

    Congratulations on your upcoming anniversary, Perhaps Du will be more able to celebrate his birthday than too.

    So glad that Mia was adopted officially into your family. That little girl is very fortunate.

    May God give you peace, strength and comfort for each day as you need it.
    1661 days ago
    That is good news! She will give you joy with her own personality and to know she has a loving home and you can have something to bring you joy instead of grief!
    I hope Du feels much better real soon. I look forward to pictures and naming your new baby girl!
    Healing Hugs,
    1661 days ago
  • KERRYG155
    What an adorable puppy!! It will be fun having a small one in the house again. I think we rely on our fur kids more when our own are all grown up! Happy Birthday to your husband and prayers that he sees many more. Also an early Happy Anniversary to you both. As for the working after so little rest, my husband would do the same thing-these guys are so stubborn!! I do understand that the Husker stuff does need to be gotten done right and on time and I can see how the athletic stuff wouldn't ever be ready for print early. Oh well, I'm sure they're used to that after all these years. Have a wonderful day!
    1662 days ago
    Hugs to the both of you. Having a new puppy in the house will help, even with all the training to do. When I lost the second of my first pair of kitties in 2006, the grief was overwhelming and the empty house was too much to bear. I ended up getting a new pair of kittens from the shelter after a few weeks. They kept me busy and having them around helped ease the pain. I still miss my first pair of kitties, and I wouldn't trade this second pair for anything. Your new baby will bring joy into your home and your hearts.
    1662 days ago
  • CANNIE50
    I feel so badly for you and your husband, Pam. SO much to deal with, emotionally and physically. I hope you both are able to get extra rest. I am glad to hear you are getting a new puppy. I hoped you would. Your granddaughter is so adorable and so fortunate to be embraced lovingly by a wonderful family. I know she is a blessing to all of you. emoticon
    1662 days ago
    Oh your new puppy is adorable and exactly what you both need. Congrats and also congrats on your new forever grandchild. She is adorable too! Glad to hear that some rays of sunshine are in your life again! emoticon
    1662 days ago
    I think you are doing the right thing to get a new puppy. Lola would too as it is because she was so wonderful. When do you get to bring the new little girl home? When my DD's sheltie died they were able to get a "niece" through the fathers line. It is amazing how alike they are. I'm sure the new puppy will be a great success! emoticon
    1662 days ago
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