Trying to be a responsible therapy dog and keep things in order around here can sometimes be exhausting. For the last week I have had to address a new critter in our back yard, take care of Doc and work. I won’t lie, I am feeling stressed.
The first thing that happened was after Doc and I got home from work on Wednesday. I noticed that her energy was faltering. By Friday morning, it was apparent to me that she was sick, but Doc stayed in denial and pushed herself through the rest of the day. Luckily we were working from home, but in the afternoon I told Doc she needed to practice what she preached to others and see a doctor. Surprise, surprise, she must have been feeling bad, because she listened and made an appointment for Saturday morning. Luckily it was nothing serious. She actually came home and got in bed to rest like the doctor ordered and I was happy to stay right beside her. I know it comforts her, and Doc taught me we should take care of those we love.
On Sunday afternoon, she was starting to feel better and since it was a beautiful and warm October day, we decided to hang out on the back porch and relax. I had found a nice spot in the shade where I could watch the kids next door playing soccer, when I suddenly heard the faint sound of rustling leaves under the pine trees. I didn’t think too much of it until this little fury critter came shooting across the lawn like a cannon ball and almost ran me over. The nerve! Startled, I got up as fast as I could and flew over to the flower bed to investigate, but it had already gone down a hole in the ground that went under a large statue of St. Francis, the patron saint of animals. I guess the little thing thought it needed a miracle to stay safe. I looked up at Doc who was chuckling at me. ” We’ve got ourselves a chipmunk, and it’s way too fast for you to catch Grover. ” she said with a wink. Well, I have to admit, that kind of ticked me off, so I decided to set up a stakeout right on top of the hole. No chipmunk was going to outsmart me in my own yard. So I sat and I sat until it started to turn dusk and Doc called me in for supper. And don’t you know it, just as I was going up the stairs to the back porch that little sucker poked it’s head out of the whole to see if the coast was clear and then ran back across the yard. “Curses, foiled again!” I mumbled under my breath. Too tired to give it any more energy, I relented and came inside.
I must have looked defeated because Doc said to me, ” Let it go Grover, it’s ok. Sometimes life can be filled with challenges that can leave us feeling tired and frustrated. This has been a stressful week for both of us, but especially you, because you have been trying to take care of everyone, including me and now It’s time for you to take some time for yourself. ” she said softly. She was right as usual, and so I gave in to the weariness that was taking over. I curled up on my blanket next to Doc’s chest, took a deep breath and focused on the beat of her heart until I fell fast asleep.