In 2006 when Frankie was diagnosed with IVDD the following months caring for her and adjusting to a new way of life around a paralyzed dog was stressful. It was a test on many levels not only for myself, but for my relationship with John. I didn’t want to have to care for a paralyzed dog, but here it was in front of me and I had a choice. I could whine about it and feel sorry for myself, or I could look for the blessings of the situation. Well, as many of you know who have followed my journey with Frankie, the blessings were plentiful and they were some of the best years of my life.
As Frankie aged, I couldn’t imagine not having another little special needs dachshund in my life again after she was gone. I knew it would be what I wanted. But John was not always on board with that idea. At times I would become quite fearful wondering what if he was really adamant about it and I couldn’t bring another IVDD doxie into our lives? I would worry and think, could it be a deal breaker? I don’t think I could have thrown away my marriage as I feel so fortunate to have one of what I consider the best ones. But yet, I knew caring for an IVDD dog is what makes my soul feel complete. And I would have never known that had Frankie not been diagnosed with IVDD!
So over the course of the past two years I gently would share with John now and then that I would have to have another special needs doxie to care for when Frankie was gone. It was not always an easy thing to bring up, because I knew he was hesitating.
After Frankie passed and I grieved the loss of her I thought about a lot of things. I swear thinking was all I did! But what I realized for myself was at the core of all I did with Frankie, the school visits, the therapy dog visits, the books, etc. what I truly loved most was caring for her. It was the day to day of making sure her life was a good one despite her IVDD. This is what brought me my purest bliss. Not having Frankie here left a big hole and void in what made me feel complete.
I’m glad I gave myself the summer to grieve Frankie, though at times I just wanted the pain to end. But it reaffirmed for me that having another IVDD dachshund was truly what I wanted. There just was no question in my mind, or even more, what was in my heart. Though I still worried that John wouldn’t understand how vital this was for me. Could I have adjusted if he was not on board? Sure, but I believe I would have not felt complete.
So when I saw Joie on Facebook, it was her eyes that drew me right in. I felt Frankie strongly in my heart saying, “Mama this is the one.” I just knew. But fear rose up in my heart again and I worried that John would say no when I showed him her picture. He didn’t say anything when I showed him Joie’s photo, so I just let him absorb it. It is something I’ve learned to respect that he needs his own processing time, which I remember the minister telling us before we got married during our counseling sessions. So I knew I needed to let him come to his own place with all of this. It was not easy, believe me, because I was bursting with JOY. But it was also important to me to have his acceptance.
I had to trust that if this was meant to be it would all unfold in its own time. Again, not an easy thing to do. But looking back now just a few short weeks later, it feels like this is what it was meant to be all along. And guess who is head over heels in love with our new little bundle? Well, I will let you come to your own conclusion. <GRIN> And while my worries about a deal breaker may have been for naught, I feel like it was just another lesson in learning to trust.
Joie has brought a new joy and love into our lives and she loves to play with Kylie which really warms my heart to see. She was not a deal breaker, but instead another lesson in what matters most. And guess who loves to snuggle with her when I am gone? Again, I’ll let you figure that out on your own, but I have a feeling you know who that special someone is. I am one lucky lady!!