Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Being Thankful, for (most) Everything

Last Spring when I learned Foster was going blind, the veterinarian told me that my other dog would help Foster and that he would become dependent on her. I looked at Foster and said, "Well, Buddy, looks like your sunk."

I didn't tell the vet that Tilly, my other dog, is a pinhead. And I say that in the nicest way possible. Sure, when I adopted her from the shelter (two years ago this week), she was listed as a dog. However, I strongly suspect she is part squirrel and part timber wolf. See? That's Tilly scaling the seven foot woodpile in the lean-to. I think she's looking for mice. All I know is she's not helping me haul wood to the house.

Last night, I had a dream that Tilly ran off and I couldn't find her. I was distraught. In real life, she's run off a couple of times, mainly to the woods, and I felt like I didn't really care. But that's not true. A year ago, she ran away on the college campus (chasing deer!!) and it was over an hour before I found her (or she found me). It was cold and I got worried.

Perhaps I like her after all.

Recently, Foster's eyesight is worsening and Tilly has become attentive to him. While he doesn't seem to like her much more than I do (or act like it), he's paying closer attention to what she's doing. Fortunately, he has not picked up her recent habit of sprinting through the forsythia row and looping by the barn first thing in the morning. Somehow, she seems to think she should "secure the perimeters". I guess I'm okay with that too, even if she looks like a sprinting freak.

Maybe Foster and I need to have Tilly around, and not just for comic relief or a reason to be cranky. While I still am working on her not greeting visitors with two paws to the chest and a french kiss (some guests seem to like this), there is some charm and sweetness about her. It's taken a long time to appreciate this, and not just hang my head in my hands, moaning at the nut of a dog I have in my life.

Sometimes you just have to be thankful for the nuts. And that's not code.

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