This is my version of remembered reality cobbled together over various conversations at the time, circa a galaxy & time far away, when my oldest son had died, my marriage/life was falling apart and things were in upheaval – with supporting roles by other actors/actresses that grace my Life Stage.
Blessedly, the hurts of that time are starting to fade for me and them – Granted, my memory of how Zeus came to rest in our household could be from skewed perspective; but since I’m recognized as pack member with best memory and other stage folks don’t regularly check my blog, unless I specifically request ’em to check out the latest story I’m tellin’, – I’m free to tell my own version of events – 🙂
Shortly after Me & youngest man-child-unit sought temporary shelter at the place of my birth, (in 2008, as a ‘stop-gap’ measure without long term decisions made on future paths, simply EVERY expert will tell ya, you really shouldn’t make when you’re grieving) – my mom declared,
“The boy needs a dog…”
“Yup! and the perfect match for us will show up on our door step, cuz someone chose to dump ’em in what they think is the wild, uninhabited plains or mistakenly thought they were getting even with Kansas for some long ago offense. Patience! If it is to be, God in form of Dog will show up – we just have to wait for him/her to arrive…and we’ll ready to greet ’em…WHEN they show up.”
Not too long later, I received a phone call while home alone – friendly voice on the other end:
“Hey! Your mom said to call you and schedule for you to come by and pick up your puppy – do you want to come after school, today?”
“What?!? WHO is this?…. Uh-huh … Who were you calling?…Well, yes, that’s me, but… Yes, that’s my mom… when did you talk to her?… Yeah, okay, I’ll pick up the man-child and we’ll be over after school…”
Then called speed dialed Mom, and started blubbering, without a polite, “are you work busy?” disclaimer….
“Umm…I just got a call from Ms. X – asking me to come up and pick out the puppy we want and she said, you said, to call me to schedule – is this true?”
“Yes (she replies) – you said you wanted a dog, and their dog had an unexpected liter, that isn’t pure bred, but it’s 1/2 Blue Heeler…no wait, … Australian Shepherd? – – well you know, one of the ones you like and….”
So, yes, I took the boy to get a puppy…
Sometimes, other folks’ creation of reality manifests your Universal call to Duty in a way you hadn’t even thought of – and sometimes, you just over-analyze the Universal signs enough to put yourself into a wet-paint corner – Still, years later, trying to figure it out…
You should know – my mom was greatly traumatized in her childhood by knowledge of those that chose to get rid of unwanted ‘pups and kits’ in really disturbing ways, so, since the current litter arrived via ‘oops! neighbor male dog got out and found our prized pure bred female’ scenario, I still figure there was some portion of Mom’s brain replaying old memories and too scary for her to think she might inadvertently contribute to evil-doings, at least for one of the litter – by not signing up to handle …
Secondly, although I like animals, and usually, can observe enough and learn enough to provide at least safe-loving space for those four-leggeds that have had a rough go or harsh treatment at the hands of others to heal somewhat (read, adult dog who got hauled into jail (aka, local animal shelter), I’m not an expert, or even apprentice, in any culturally accepted training/obedience training arenas –
I know (both then and still) about as much about what to do with puppies as I know what to do with an 8 year old two-legged borne of my own loins – I love ya! But, Yes, I’m asking for help from the village for your, “no longer early development, not yet a fun pre/teen – now what do I do?” phases of the ball game – just cuz, I tend to consistently fumble the ball in this arena….
Man-child and I arrive at said place, and are promptly greeted as we walk towards the barn, by the cutest ball of roly-poly spotted fur ya ever did see – followed by, (and yet, holding back some, shy/reserved/picky?), slimmer, not so fluffy litter mate –
Meanwhile – far behind and oblivious to the stakes at hand, are the rest the frolicking litter mates who are too stupid to know it’s adoption day at the orphanage.
(yes, Dog is God spelled backwards, until I think they ain’t paying attention, whatsoever – then they get busted to stupid human status in my mind – Now? Nearly 8 years later? I figure they knew a spot with us wasn’t in the cards for Universal plans, but Then? Yup, I figured they were just to stupid or broke to pay attention…)
I fall in like with (male) roly-poly – man-child falls in like with (female) shy/reserved – they seem to move together, with space to be themselves in between, and I, (stupidly?), think while observing them,
(even somewhile later, as we are slowly, but enthusiastically, accosted by the late-to-the-party litter mates who realized, “Oh! Crap! Something going on over there! We better hurry up, check it out and get our two cents into the conversation…”)
“Yin/Yang – and won’t it be less jarring for them to leave their mama and litter mates, if at least they have each other?”
Yes, folks, that’s how don’t-know-what-she’s-doing-training-puppies me, ended up carting two puppies home…
My continuing definition of insanity is treading where I really ought not to – repeatedly, even when I should know better –
The drive home entailed man-child hitting on just the right name for his girl – and while I thought about the coming months of me calling Chloe and her roly-poly brother, I tried out some names that would not only fit his spirit BUT also wouldn’t get me too tongue tied if I was trying to verbalize my own tips & tricks, in a hurry to stave off disaster – to them both – in quick succession –
(I’m not very good at doing stuff in a hurry, unless it’s of life and death status – and even then….)
(I really wanted to name ’em Frick and Frack, so any impatience or urgency encountered by me, could be easily be vented/handled by calmly, sternly saying, “Frick, what were you thinking? ” or “Frack- No-Frack-Stay!” – alas, man-child young enough, I didn’t even trot the idea out to him….I did read once, aeon’s ago, best to keep dog and oxen names to one syllable – Frick and Frack do fit that bill…maybe someday I, too, will mess up a perfectly good pair of oxen – )
For all intents and purposes – Zeus and Chloe had their all-important naming ceremonies during a 15 mile drive home – sans any fanfare other than, ‘adult and child two-leggeds felt it worked, was fitting and felt right’ in a blink of an eye –
Things went well for awhile – I got some puppy training books from the library, re-watched a wolf documentary to better understand pack training of the young’ns and then set about doing my ignorant best – and rested from labors in a watery Colorado winter/spring sun while the pair still trusted me enough to sleep on my lap – they were comfy and my heart did heal some from my human journey while they got their nap after my ‘lil’ training, “we work hard, we play hard – this is our pack motto” exercises – win/win? right?
Nope – due to my own inadequacies as a real dog whisperer – AND the fact that often, the other two-leggeds in my home looked to me to be the alpha and ‘take care of it’ while they went about taking care of their own dragons
(I must make sure you know, important personal dragons were the two-leggeds in my house battling at that time- and just not enough off-field of battle, time/energy to deal with the load of of hammering out their own ‘pack’ status with the pups…)
And… I confess, I did take on this lil extra project, while battling multiple dragons, myself, and buckled under demands, “Can’t you make them stop doing…(insert your fave puppy-loves-to-do item, even when house trained had been taken off the table )…
Thus, the pups were confused by the pack dynamics – obviously, I was the alpha, cuz I’m the most demanding and exacting – and, by turn, “ya worked hard, now let’s play hard!” auntie they spent the most time with –
…but it was also obvious to them they weren’t, by gummy, slated to be the Omega of their new pack – nor were they really getting clear messages of what the rest of the pack status was from moi – they were confused over alpha/auntie me not letting ’em vent their stress out on the two-legged lower status members OR even being able to easily define through tried/true methods to determine just who the held the Omega/lower status slots in their new pack…
My fault and I failed as alpha/auntie –
The pups started to fight amongst themselves – just cuz, c’mon, SOMEONE has to be the Omega in the pack? Right? Somebody? Anybody? Not us, but who? Yet, we’re not allowed to dominate over the other members of the pack – -”
(You should know, the pack two-leggeds, were working their way through navigating new relationship dynamics now that we’re all sharing the same cave – I’m not totally oblivious – ya know….)
I wasn’t inclined to let the pups work out their own stuff and mine too,, in their own arena, in their own way, when it seemed to my heart sore heart things were getting too rough –
I wasn’t willing to push hard my secret thought that our gifted blessings from the Universe were trying to teach us two-leggeds a thing or two – but we kept failing to show up for class and sign up to take the final – I just couldn’t make twixt and tween meet in my own internal landscape –
Sigh – All you real dog whisperers are free to post your insights/constructive criticism – I’m open to learning – I’m pretty certain – even now – I’ll never sign up for a puppy again – let alone two of ’em –
If you’re gonna be mean, please move on – you can’t make me feel worse than I already do AND wouldn’t I love the opportunity of another cat to kick in frustration other than myself!
You are welcome, however, to leave your breadcrumb cyber trail, comment with self-styled version of “if life deals ya another puppy in the future, here’s how to hire me – ya dweeb….’ 🙂 )
Eventually, Chloe found a home with my brother (who didn’t bond with Zeus particularly well, thought Zeus to pushy in demanding attention and Zeus deemed unfit to fit in, as well, with Uncle’s existing pack) –
Man-child hated the pups increasingly intense fighting enough that he decided it was more bearable to let Chloe go home with Uncle, with the knowledge, she would still be accessible and we could visit.
Not too long after Chloe’s departure, Zeus managed to lose his zippity-do-dah-carefree talent of beating the rear tires of the car while zipping from one side of the lane to another in his morning play of saying goodbye to those heading out to school & work…
And died in my arms while I asked God to please take this cup from my lips, forgive me my sins, cuz I thought I would be given more time to get better at this – to how many more deaths must I sit helplessly by, easing in my inept way from this world to the next, because there was nothing else to do? plea…
(answer received) “No one else available, just now, so your job to do, buck up, get ‘er done – we’ll heal the fall-out later… by the way? what were you thinking at the beginning of this story, ya dweeb?”
Then I seriously trudged from the outbuilding Zeus’ adrenaline shock had given him energy to make his way to, back to the human abode, thinking I might find a way to comfort the shock, dismay and hearts of the two-legged driver and man-child passenger who were struggling over it all and how did this happen?
Who really, just then, wanted to know, “Why didn’t you make sure this wouldn’t happen?!?” 🙂
My story and now you know….
Yup! I failed in oh-so-many ways – for a myriad of reasons – these moments are the ones that remind you of your own hubris in forging ahead, when you know, you probably ought to not…
We still (2016) get to see Chloe-Girl (her oft said 2 syllable new name) every so often. She thrives in my brother’s pack and, as I’ve watched a pup grow to adulthood with an Uncle, I know she truly made her way to where she was really supposed to be – for her and for him.
I still think of Zeus – and though he exasperated me beyond belief- cuz, apparently, he and I were too much alike- I am oft reminded –
These are the same lessons I learned from my son Morgan, Ponce the Appaloosa and Boomer the ‘bust outta jail’ yellow Lab mix – And Zeus…
…and many others during my journey –
Sometimes, you love at first sight and don’t fully realize – the Universe just served ya up something ya gotta do – best you can, even if, currently, you are goin’ to flub it here and there – cuz ya just too ignorant, right now, to know better –
But I’m in no doubt, whatsoever, that in response to my call –
“Hey! Zeus on his way…will you do the meet and greet and watch out for him till I get there?”
I was blessed and forgiven with an instant answer of,
“You Bet! Consider it done!”
Yes, I felt just a tad better on the long walk back to the house while musing through my own failings.
And so now that you know the backstory, (there is always a backstory here at BallyBin, you aren’t used to it yet? Or did you get lost and somehow wind up here?)
Currently – my adopted family over at New Bloggy Cat lost their beloved Zap, and I, hastily typing out email reply & belated WordPress comment on update posted, somehow left out Zeus as part of the requested welcoming party from my gone-before-me pack.
It hit me, in my heart, some pondering time later, (did I mention I really shouldn’t do things in a hurry?)
Zeus is probably a soul-brother of Zap – and so I asked Zeus if he could say howdy and keep an eye on Zap till he learns the ropes and gets settled in –
And got a “You Bet! Consider it done…but you owe me some play hard time when ya get here!” reply –
Miss ya Zeus – look forward to seeing you again!