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Wednesday, February 25, 2015

I'm Thankful For Miracles

See that sky?  See those clouds?  That was the sky yesterday.  So clear, so blue with huge puffy clouds as far as the eye could see.  Growing up in Southern California I never imagined a sky actually looking this wonderful.  When we moved to Arizona and I first saw a sky like this I fell in love.  This is my favorite kind of sky, and I am instantly cheerful, amazed and thankful to God for such a beautiful sky.

With that sky yesterday came some cooler weather - which felt wonderful to me!!  However, the chill didn't feel good to everyone.  By the time we were headed for bed, Miss Sophie's left shoulder was bothering her and she was limping pretty good.  Because she's had this limp before and we knew it was because her arthritis acts up in the cold weather we didn't worry too much and we went to bed.

By morning B-jams was telling me he wasn't feeling well (again) and after an eye roll I dolled out some Ibuprofen and Zyrtec and told him I'd drive him to and from school so he didn't have to ride his bike in the cold.  Don't worry - because you may or may not know that one of my biggest pet peeves is when the kids eye roll me... and I eye rolled... and spoiler alert - I'll eat that eye roll by the end of this post.

Meanwhile, my Sophie girl spent the morning with a horrible limp.  Not only her front leg, but BOTH back legs were hurting and my poor girl could hardly walk.  She sat on my lap until it was time to take the boys to school. When I got up, she had a very worried look in her eyes and wanted to go with me.  She hobbled and could hardly even move.  She had a sad little rear end squat walk and a hop on her right front paw.  Daddy took her inside and helped her lay down until I got home.  Poor girl could hardly move.  Again, I wasn't super super concerned because I knew it was cold and that sometimes she gets somewhat stiff.  I found her doggie aspirin and mixed it into her breakfast kibble, which she instantly sniffed and snubbed.  This girl has an amazing talent for knowing when I try to slip her a little something.  After trying to coax her to eat for a bit without success, I chopped up some more aspirin and smashed it into some cubed cheese.  At first she sniffed it and looked at me like "are you kidding me? I know there's something in there".  But then the bottomless Labrador tummy took over and she ate 'em up.  There was about half an aspirin that didn't make it to the party in her tummy, but most got in.  I was sure she would be feeling better soon and able to get around better.   I was wrong.  Twenty minutes went by and she was still laying down breathing funny.  Thirty minutes went by and still, nothing.  I let her sleep and kept an eye on her.  I noticed that when Pops went to get some food in the kitchen she could hardly lift her head, let alone look over or get up to check out what was going on in the food room.  I tried to coax her onto the couch, and she tried to roll over and get up but she just laid back onto her side.  I wrapped her in a blanket and gave her a pillow for her head.
I grabbed a blanket for myself and Roo's stuffed dog to use as a pillow and snuggled on in as close as I could.  After snuggling and petting her and feeling so sad that she was having so much trouble moving I called the Vet.  After speaking with her she asked me to bring her in for an emergency appointment.  I wasn't sure how on earth I would get Sophie in the car as she weighs almost 100lbs.  And I was so worried about her.  By this time I noticed she was slobbering a bunch as well.  And her eyes, her sad eyes were asking for help and I lost it.  I cried and hugged her and cried some more.  I didn't want her to hurt or to be sick, and mostly I was terrified that there was something utterly unspeakable and unthinkable going on.  
When she saw me holding her leash, she forced herself up.  That was a good sign!  But walking?  Walking was very slow and I could tell it was very painful for her.  Austin helped her get into the car and we headed out to see the puppy doctor.  
Poor little lady was poked and prodded getting her reflexes tested along with the ever interesting thermometer in the bum.  Her reflexes were all well responsive and the doctor said we would need to have some x-rays taken to know what is going on.  There was a bit of a wait until it was x-ray time and my baby girl laid on the floor trying to get comfortable.  And then I did something kinda gross - but I didn't even care.  I laid down on the floor next to her.  Yes, in the vet's office.  Yes, in the exam room.  Yes, where who knows how many animals peed,  pooped, barfed and bled.                       Yeah, the laying on the floor part is icky - I mean how many 45 year old women would lay down on the vet floor and snuggle up with their dog?  Well, I don't even care how many because I wanted to do whatever I could to help my fur baby feel better.  And honestly, I had no idea Austin was taking pictures.  But we're cute so it's okay.   Pretty soon it was time for x-rays and little fur baby didn't want to leave the exam room without Mommy there.  I'm pretty sure she's as attached to me as I am to her. :)  
While we were waiting, Austin and I heard lots of giggles from the x-ray room.  A few weeks back Austin's little therapy ball got lost.  We turned the house upside down and couldn't find it.  We joked about how funny it would be if they found the ball in her tummy.  Okay - funny/not funny - but it was a stress reliever to joke about it.  I think there was a hint of disappointment in Austin's eyes when the ball wasn't inside the Super Sophie. Mostly because then we'd know where that darn ball ended up!  Ha ha. 
Funny story... that dark mass shaped like a boomerang?  It's gas.  Toot's waiting to SBD us when we least expect it.  Thankfully she made a big doo-doo when we got home and got rid of the bomb.  

You can see where the "elbow" is. In the image on the right you can see how the arthritis is growing around the joint.  I also found it super interesting to see the bones in her leg and "hand" - because it looks so people like.   The view on the left is her "good" elbow - you can see the difference in the joints on the two x-rays.                                                
Thankfully, Sophie doesn't have anything life threatening.  She does have bad arthritis in her left elbow (that we already knew about) but she also has pretty bad arthritis in the lumbar of her spine, around where her hips meet her spine.  We were sent home with detailed instructions on how best to help and care for her until she's feeling better as well as several prescriptions for swelling, muscle relaxants and pain.  I find it slightly ironic that my furry pal has a similar back problem to mine as well as she was prescribed two of the same medications that I already take. 
 Little lady was more than ready to come back home.  She did great getting in and out of my car and she was super happy to see the littles.  
                                As for me?  I was exhausted.  I sat down to take a little break and help Aaron with his homework before running the afternoon activity carpool rush.  I was so thankful that we knew how to help Sophie so she would be able to feel better and get around.  I was so thankful thinking that everyone was healthy, Sophie was going to be alright and Aaron was zipping through his math pages.  And then I looked to the other end of the couch.  And that's when it happened...
  I noticed that my little buddy was napping on his own, with rosy cheeks, in the middle of the afternoon.  Not playing video games.  Not watching YouTube videos.  Not riding his bike or climbing a tree.  And do you remember that eye roll from earlier?  Here's when I ate it.  Somehow, someway, my little guy was actually sick.

Everyone buckle up - here we go again!
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