Welcome to week 10 of Contemplation. Usually, I share a prompt from my Kikki.K A Sentence A Day Three Year Journal, but today I want to do something a little different. Today I’m creating my own prompt, based on something that happened last week.
This week: how has a pet impacted your life?
Last week, I took Gidget to the park for our semi-usual evening walk. We had a good walk, about 30 minutes as usual. At the end, she trotted off towards the car, but I called her back because I needed to take her waste to the bin first.
On the way to the bin, we came across a little dog and her three elderly humans and she and Gidget hit it off, sniffing each other and jumping about, playing happily.
Gidget does this thing when she’s playing, where she shuffles rapidly from side to side, faking left, then right and then doing a few laps around us. She was doing that, making everyone laugh.
All of a sudden, Gidget decided to run her lap away from us and up towards the road. She was so fast. She just ran, bottom down, ears back and tearing up the hill. I shouted at her to stop, stay, come back. And she did stop. She stopped at the footpath, as she usually does, waiting for me to take her to the car.
I was making my way up the hill towards her, not really worried, because she always stops at the footpath. But then I saw her eyes go wide, her ears go back and she turned and ran across the road.
It was just after 5pm. In Melbourne. Luckily, there was a roundabout near where she ran, so the cars were not travelling as quickly as they could have been.
I just saw her dash into traffic, cars going past in each direction and I couldn’t see anything else because of the angle of the hill.
It was petrifying. Not knowing what was waiting on the road. A tiny part of me just assumed she was dead, it feels awful to write that, but a part of me was already trying to come to terms with not having her in my life anymore.
When I got to the edge of the road, I couldn’t see her anywhere. But then I caught a glimpse of white on the other side of the road, behind a parked car.
I found her standing on the footpath, panting heavily, eyes wide, with her left front foot held up in the air.
I can’t explain the relief that I felt. I gathered her up and gently squeezed her leg, which didn’t worry her. But as I worked my way to her foot, she cried. It broke my heart.
I have a plan with my vet where my membership gives me free consultations, vaccinations and discounts on everything else. It’s good for piece of mind: if you think something is wrong, you don’t question it, you just go and get it checked.
So I phoned them and they said to come straight in. They couldn’t find anything except that she squealed when they touched the foot. So they gave her pain relief and said to come back in the morning for X-rays and hospitalization for the day.
Gidget has a broken foot. The vet thinks that a car probably clipped her. She is in a cast, which she doesn’t really understand but I’ve told her not to chew it and she has left it alone. She is supposed to stay off her foot as much as possible while it sets and she has nightly pain relief. I can tell when the medication is wearing off – she rolls onto her back and raises the cast in the air and whimpers quietly.
Poor little darling. I love her so much. It hit me hard on Friday night when I got home from the vet. I realized that I am alone here without my family. I have a lot of friends here but they all work as well, none of them are stay-at-home people. They’ve all been so kind, with offers of help and company on the weekend and chats and messages – such lovely people.
I did have plans to travel this week for work, but Gidget has to be kept quiet and carried outside when she needs to go to the toilet – I have to take her to the street behind my building for that – and she has to be given her medications.
My colleagues and my boss have both been brilliant. One of my colleagues here in Melbourne changed his plans on the spot on Friday night and took the trip to Sydney for me and he also made me feel a lot better on the phone. I was in tears, which I did not expect, and he handled it so well. And my boss – I told him that I really need to work from home with her for this week and he has so kindly agreed to let me do that, telling me to take the time that I need.
Sometimes, we take things for granted. There aren’t a lot of bosses who would understand how much a dog can mean to someone, that she is my family. My workmates are also so kind and understanding, I’ve had such good wishes from them today as they’ve learnt about what happened. They know what she means to me.
I send them all my heartfelt thanks.