Buddy had heartworm when we rescued him. Bad. Treatment was expensive and the process was unbelievably difficult for him physically and for us emotionally. His first love was Miss Annie. Oh, how he loved her and she passed away as did Ruger, Duchess and Mumford, leaving Buddy all alone. Cats don’t count. His back legs have always been a bit wonky and that wonkiness has progressed. His thyroid is way out of wack and because of that he is overweight, which compounds problems with his legs. He is getting medication for that. He has an enlarged heart and is on medicine for that too along with other medications for other maladies. His spirit is willing though his flesh is weak.
We have a sunken family room with two steps down but he can no long make those steps so he lays in the hall in front of his fan. He loves his fan. The one he had got old and stopped working so we got him a brand new one for which he is so grateful. The hall is covered with piddle pads because he can’t always make it outside due to his uncooperative back legs, some disposable and some washable. I can’t even count the number of loads of laundry the Missus does daily. We try to get him to walk as often as possible to keep him moving. Sometimes he only makes it a few feet before he collapses and pants. We’re his cheerleaders. “That’s good, Buddy. You can rest for a while.” Sometimes we say, “You can do it. Just a little farther. Come on, you can do it. Good boy!” We’ve always been his cheerleaders because sometimes his spirit gets weak along with the flesh. He usually makes it outside four times each day. Today it was three, yesterday it was three, the day before, he made it twice. That was a bad day. Sometimes he sort of walks (stumbles) and sometimes he has to drag his back end but he always gives it all that he has.
He made it outside tonight and collapsed in the grass, which is usually the case. I always sit with him and I pet him and encourage him. Tonight, I told him that God loves him. God brought him to us so that we could take care of him. I told him that Annie loves him and Ruger loves him and Duchess and Mumford too. I acknowledged that sometimes I know his life has been hard and it’s hard right now and then I asked him if he could please stick around for a while longer. “We love you and we’ll always take care of you.” When we were done talking he got up and walked about twenty feet, a huge feat, and then he did some business. “Good boy!” We rested four times before we finally got back into the house and then he rested just inside the door before making the short trek back into the hallway, about twelve feet and then he rested again.
Indeed there are times when life gets hard for all of us. Like Buddy, we may have been dealt a bad hand but it’s the only hand that we’ve got and we have to play it. It helps when someone is there to encourage us. It also helps when someone reminds us that God loves when things look hopeless. Not that we have forgotten but we just can’t remember it at the time.
God loves Buddy and He loves you too. Be good to yourself and to others.
The LORD sustains all who fall and raises up all who are bowed down.