All posts tagged Pets

The Appliances in My Life

The relationship I’ve experienced over the years with my appliances has been tenuous, to say the least. (I just looked that word up.)

I’ve loved very few, been indifferent to most, and hated some.

For instance, I hated my old dishwasher. Really, a more apt name would have been, Frustrate Pauline to Death and Make Her Work More machine. But that is in the past. Hakuna Matata.

Now I hate my side-by-side refrigerator. Who thought of such a thing? Obviously someone who didn’t ever ever care about freezing anything since nothing fits except frozen pot pies. (Not that I eat them.) AND they never have eaten a frozen pizza in their entire lives. Obviously, the inventor must have eaten out all the time.

But I loved my old dryer. In fact, when it finally died after 20+ years, I hugged it and when Tom took it away to dryer heaven he discovered about $25 in coins and cash. Like the side-by-side refrigerator inventor, we went out to eat that day. (No socks by the way.)

In all the years of appliance owning, I’ve never been fearful of an appliance. Until now.

It’s my vacuum cleaner. Really, it’s a the iRobot Roomba. Since building an outside kitchen for cooking my products, I’ve been able to let my standard poodle, Sam back in. He’s no problem, because he doesn’t shed. It’s the mutt dog, Barnabas and my ferocious kitty, Bree that are the problem.

They shed. Big time.

So, as a gift to myself, I purchased Roger Roomba.

About every other day, I turn my kitchen chairs upside down on the table, load the counter stools on the couch, and push Roger’s navel twice. He sings a robotic war-like charge song and begins to scoot gingerly around my wood floors. I can’t watch although I’ve been mesmerized on several occasions at his antics. In fact, after he is throughly convinced he has every single strand of pet hair in his belly, he returns to his home on the black stand plugged into the wall.

However, the other day, he chased me. Wherever I went, he went. Finally, I locked myself in my office while I listened to his faraway war chant. Retrieving my coffee put me at risk, but you coffee drinkers know I had no choice.

He headed right at me, I zigged and zagged like a running back.

And then I fell.

And when you’re past 50, falling is a bad thing.

But Roger does his job.

Now I’m taking two cups of coffee in my office with me.

And when Roger goes home, I come out.

In all relationships there are compromises. And I’m okay with that.


My Dog Died

The wedding was beautiful. The flowers, gorgeous. The decorations, stunning. The bride, radiant. I was exhausted.

I’d finished five bouquets for the attendants, seven table arrangements, eight pew holders, and I’d decorated fourteen tables. After dinner I was ready to go home.

When I arrived, my mom’s caregiver mentioned that my dog wouldn’t come in from outside. That was strange. He was not an outside dog. I found my twelve-year-old standard poodle barely standing by our fence. We coaxed him in, but I knew something was wrong.

It was the weekend, so I spoke with an emergency veterinary to describe the symptoms.

“It sounds like a twisted stomach.” I thought as much. What should I do?

“Only surgery will help. Or it might be too late.”

“What if I just want to leave him home and make him comfortable?”

“Better to bring him in and get him checked. The best thing would be to put him down.”

My 20-year-old-son, Micah loaded him into the car. I gathered my purse. As we pulled into the animal hospital, a man slightly older than me exited, tears creasing his face.

They took Esau into a back room while we waited in an exam room. Decisions had to be made, money needed to be paid. Micah put his arm around me while I sobbed. My sleeve got full, so I crossed the room and grabbed a handful of tissues.

I remembered when Micah and I first saw Esau. He was a creamy white, fluffy thing that followed Micah everywhere. It was Micah’s eight-year-old birthday present. Now he would be with me when Esau died. I touched Micah’s hand.

Four years ago, I put down my black standard poodle Jacob. I sobbed then, too. Because of working full time, caregiving for my handicapped parents, parenting two teens and trying to keep my home together and my marriage good, I hadn’t paid much attention to my dogs. His death was a turning point for me.

I took more time with my double-amputee-father and was kinder to him. He died eight months later.

I wondered how long my 90-year-old mother would be with us. She loved Esau more than me. I cried harder at the thought of telling her.

They brought Esau to us and we said our good-byes. We petted him and I whispered in his ear that he was a faithful friend, a good dog, and we’d miss him. And then he died.

It overwhelmed me. But it doesn’t overwhelm God. Death and life are all from Him. He gives. He takes away. But His blessings are indescribable.

I sang about Him in worship on Sunday, and I was encouraged. He is the One who gives me hope. He is the One Who died and rose and conquered death for me.


I think I’ll wait to get another puppy. But I will.