Sunday, November 22, 2009

Crying so hard I can hardly breathe...

My parents got their pug dog, Otis Pugsley, back in 1993. I was 13 years old. I still remember the day so clearly... February 12, 1993 my mom, dad and I went to Ohio Valley Mall in St. Clairsville for a day of shopping. Of course, when we walked by Petland, I insisted that we just HAD to go in. You know, just to "look." We had just lost our dog Jamie (aka Boo Boo) to congestive heart failure in the beginning of January 1993. My parents didn't know whether they wanted another dog or not, but they said we could go in "just to look." We saw a little pug puppy in the store, which was a breed of dog my mom and I LOVED. I asked my parents if I could get the dog out to pet it, and they of course said no. While their backs were turned, I asked one of the girls working if she'd let me hold the pug. parents came back over to me, and to their surprise, there I was, holding the pug and totally falling in love with it. Though I missed Boo Boo and nothing could replace him in my heart, I SO wanted another dog.

We oohed and aahed over the dog for a bit, then reluctantly I had to say goodbye to the little guy because of course my parents said no...we didn't need another dog yet. So we walked down the mall a ways and decided to get something to eat. The WHOLE TIME we were in the restaurant, I was just CRYING MY EYES OUT....I wanted that dog so badly. (And I also mentioned it'd be a great birthday present for my mom, who has a Valentine's Day birthday!) All my whining and crying finally paid off, and my parents agreed that we could get the dog. I was ECSTATIC!! I practically ran back to the pet store. Once we got there, we got the dog out right away, and decided to name him Otis Pugsley, after the movie "The Adventures of Milo and Otis," which was popular at that time. (Well actually, we named him Milo for a day, til we realized Milo was the CAT in the movie. So we changed it to Otis. But anyway....)

Once we adopted Otis,they put the cutest little blue bow around his neck, and I proudly carried him through the mall. He was soooo tiny,probably 8-9 inches long at the time. I was in love with his little black mask and curly little tail. We walked down the mall to the Kmart there, and bought him a collar, dog bed, food, etc.

On the way home, he stayed in the back seat with me, in his little dog bed. I just stared at him the whole way home, and thought that he resembled Gizmo from the Gremlins. In a good way, of course. He just looked all around, wondering where it was we were taking him. I remember hearing my parents telling eachother, "I can't believe we got another dog...." lol

So that was the day we got Otis. It still feels like yesterday. Hard to believe it was 17 years ago. Little did we know he'd live such a long and full life with our family!

Today is Otis's 17th birthday. Unfortunately, it is not a happy day for our family. Two days ago, my parents took him to the vet because he's had infections in his mouth and recently some bleeding. They noticed an abscess on his gums, and it hasn't been getting any better with antibiotics. They decided to take him in to see if there was anything else that could be done. They discovered that the abscess is actually an agressive tumor that has already invaded the soft palate (back of the roof of the mouth.) The doctor said it won't get any better, and sent my parents home with some pain medicine to keep Otis comfortable, since he's been whining a lot lately. He didn't give a time frame he thinks Otis will live, nor did he recommend putting him to sleep or anything. He basically left that up to my parents, since they said Otis is still eating well and getting around ok.

Over the past few days, Otis is whining/crying a lot more, and my parents said it's been a struggle to give him his pain medicine. It's so bitter, he barely gets it down. My parents want to enjoy what little time with him they have left, but they obviously don't want him to suffer either. Tonight on the phone my mom said he is still eating, but not able to stand up very well. I told her that we have no idea how far the cancer has spread, and that he could very well be in a lot of pain. They wanted putting him to sleep to be the last option, but unfortunately that is going to happen sooner than later.

When I called my parents tonight, they said they've talked it over and tomorrow they are making the painful decision to have Otis put to sleep. They just can't bear to see him suffer any longer. So today they are loving him as much as they can and just showering him with hugs and kisses and lots of good food. Poor little guy...

I am just sobbing uncontrollably as I write this. Whenever in the past my mom has talked about losing Otis some day, it hasn't bothered me much. I think, "Ok, he's going to be 17, he's had an awesome life, and there's nothing we can say we WISH we did with him. He's done it all, practically... we gave him a great life." And that's always made me feel better. But now-- being face with it, right smack in the face-- knowing it's going to happen tomorrow-- I am crying like a baby. That's my little buddy, ya know? I mean, I was 13 when we got him and over half of my life includes memories of him. Whether a dog is young or very old-- it doesn't make any difference in how utterly devastated losing them makes you feel. This whole situation brings back a whole flood of emotions where losing our 9 month old boxer Max to lymphoma is concerned. Every emotion I felt then is all rushing back and it feels like we're losing him all over again too.

It's just so sad knowing this is his last night with his family. His last night snuggling up to my parents in bed at night. His last meals in the house... I know he's going to a better place where he won't be hurting or suffering anymore, but it doesn't make my heart hurt any less. Little did I know when I saw him last week over at my parents' house, it would be the last time I'd pet him and kiss his little head ever again.

I'll miss you little buddy... til we see eachother again. I love you.

**God, please give my parents strength to get through this tomorrow.**

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Halloween update, since I have pics now...

A little update with pictures, since I didn't have access to my pics last time I posted!

Here are some pictures of Alyson at Halloween... she was a little bumblebee. Russ and I took her over my parents' house, since we don't get many trick-or-treaters in our neighborhood. She LOVED LOVED LOVED giving out candy to all the trick-or-treaters! We gave out candy from the front porch, but she'd take handfuls and stand out on the sidewalk, waiting for the trick-or-treaters to come by! A few times I had to tell her that, no, she couldn't take something back OUT of someone's bag after giving them candy. She was trying to develop a candy exchange system, I "Here, you take this Reese's cup, and I want those chips...."

So here are the pics:

Aly (complete with chocolate face) with my cousin's daughter Olivia, dressed as Little Red Riding Hood.

Stuffing her face...

Waiting for trick-or-treaters...notice the chocolate smeared on her pants...haha!

Tootsie roll anyone? Or maybe you'd prefer some Dots?

I'll post more pics soon...Aly just woke up from her nap(Yes!! She took a NAP!! Yay!), so I gotta go upstairs now.

Hope everyone's having a great week so far.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

News :-)

Ok, I knew I hadn't updated in awhile, but jeez!!! Better get to it. Lots to update about, but I'll stick to the important one...

For those of you who haven't found out from my Facebook account (that's where I've been keeping updated with everyone, mostly!), Russ and I are expecting Baby Hunt #2! We found out right after coming back from NC in early September. I had a hunch I was pregnant, being that I was totally craving jalapeno poppers when we went out to eat on vacation, and I am SO NOT one who likes hot and spicy food.

As of today, I'm 13w1d pregnant and due on May 19th, 2010. Alyson will be just over 1 month from turning 3 years old! Russ and I are really excited about everything. He's really hoping for a boy this time around, his "Junior," as he calls him... but I will be happy either way. If it's another girl, I am totally set where clothes are concerned...the new baby will be in the same size during the same seasons...can't get any better than that.

I had my first ultrasound a few weeks ago, at a little over 11 weeks, and everything looked great. I'd post a pic, but I'm not on my own computer right now, so I don't have access to it... I'll do that soon. Baby's heartrate was 176bpm, so according to the old wive's tale, that's a "girl heartbeat"....but we'll see. With Alyson, I just KNEW she was a girl, there was no doubt in my mind from the very beginning. But with this one-- I have no idea. SOmething's telling me "boy" but I don't know.

I asked the ultrasound tech at my OB office when they usually do the gender ultrasounds, and she said 25 weeks. I REALLY can't wait that long!! That'll be the end of January or early February!! If that's the case, I'm gonna go somewhere around here and have an elective gender ultrasound done, maybe in Pittsburgh or something. I told the ultrasound girl that I'd like to find out before Christmas (I'll be 19 weeks the week of Christmas, and I found out with Aly at 18 weeks...) and she said, "I can take a look around for you then." So MAYBE they'll do one in the office early for me. I'd just like to know before'd be a great present :-)

Well, my lovely angel of a toddler is upstairs banging around, so I guess that means she doesn't want to take a nap...which equals her trashing her room. The past 4 days it has been a struggle to get her to take a nap. I think she's trying to get away from naps, but I'm trying to hang onto her naps with a death grip as long as I can!! At least for my own sanity...haha.