ANNIE WITHOUT LULU
Instead of children I’ve always had dogs, sometimes three at a time. They’re my family. Annie and Lulu were eight weeks old when I adopted them from the animal shelter almost two years ago. From the beginning the “experts” told me someday I’d have to make a choice and give one of my darling girls away, but I didn’t believe them. “Litter Mate Syndrome,” they called it. I’d never heard of litter mate syndrome and never had problems with any of my dogs. What do the experts know anyway?
In this case… Everything!
PHOTOS BY BRENDA COFFEE ©1010ParkPlace, 2018.
Two years ago I bought a house that had been “flipped.” As the inspector told me, if he could “have them”… the flippers… “arrested for fraud,” he would. Whether it was sinks, toilets, shower heads, shower floors and doors, plumbing pipes, the dishwasher, doorknobs or light switches and sockets… NOTHING was hooked up or installed. They’d just pushed things into place, sometimes held with SCOTCH TAPE, but I bought the house anyway. I bought it because I loved the location and knew I would be happy here; I envisioned the changes I’d make, and I loved that it’s built in a u-shape around a central courtyard.
I have so much left to do outside, but I wanted to share what’s happening in my courtyard.
IT'S DIFFICULT GETTING ANYTHING DONE WITH ANNIE AND LULU IN MY LAP.
Annie and Lulu are growing into fine young ladies, especially after I sent them to finishing school while I was in Italy this fall. For three weeks the girls learned the finer points of sit, stay, heel, come, inside and place.
Now the biggest challenge they face is me.
My forearms look like someone burned rubber on the highway except instead of tire marks, they’re teeth marks, and I have a newfound respect for mothers… especially of twins. I now understand when mothers say they haven’t gotten out of their PJs or brushed their teeth, all day, and the only meal they’ve eaten is a cold slice of pizza on the run.
If you or anyone you know is lonely or depressed, I suggest a puppy instead of antidepressants. If you get two puppies, just don’t expect to get anything done!
My bedroom smells like urine, and there’s a dog that likes getting stuck under my dresser, but I’m deliriously happy. It’s been a long time since I’ve had an eight-week-old puppy and until now… I’ve never had TWO. Everything is something to chew on: the dust ruffle on my bed; the edges of the old mirror that leans against my wall and the terra-cotta pots in the courtyard.
When they’re out of their crates, I feel like it’s Roller Derby time. Girls rushing past me like they’ve got wheels on their feet!
Me and Molly a month ago.
This evening, Molly went to live with God. Before the vet administered the final medication, I laid on the floor and cradled her and told her how much I loved her; how blessed I was to have her in my life and that she was a lucky girl… She was going to live with God… and Goldie and James. I tried to keep my voice light and positive.
I didn’t want to scare or alarm her, but when I said “James,” her head whipped around, and she looked me in the eyes and held my gaze. I know she understood. It took my breath away.