Feel Good Stories · Lola · Motivation & Reflection

Communication with Man’s Best Friend

 

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A researcher named Christina Hunger has recently been making the news for developing a way to communicate with her pup Stella using buttons– When I saw the story, I was immediately jealous and wanted those to speak with my Pomeranian, Lola.

stella dog

Lola passed away yesterday, before I had the chance to try them out.

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While reflecting on her life, and what I did or could have done differently,  I kept thinking about how she loved me, and if she knew, or rather — if I was able to properly communicate — just how much I loved her.  And I realize that of course I was.  We didn’t need buttons to communicate.

It’s so interesting how, by the end, after almost ten years of living together, we had our own secret language.   If I was angry, or sad, she knew it.  If my eyebrow raised or my tone changed,  she dropped her tail and pretended like she didn’t do it. If I was being kissed, she would bark her head off– something to do with my raised heartbeat, maybe.    She loved Stephen but she was mostly jealous of him.

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When she’d want water, she’d bark.   When she wanted food, she’d scoot her bowl around.  If she wanted a different kind of food, she’d flip said bowl over, spilling the contents all over the floor.

lola food floor

And she had some tricks, too!  She’d sit, lay, stay on command.  She could walk off leash, she barked when you said the catchphrase of her Saints, “Who Dat?!”  and she wouldn’t eat anything (even a piece of juicy steak) as long as you said “leave it” —  the second you said “eat it” she’d scarf it down.   She was smart, and her ability to learn commands is what allowed her to come with me to four different jobs (a boutique, film production office, car dealership, and at the end– my writing job from home) — but what she really excelled at most of all was not her ability to follow commands, but the communication that she gave me, in return.

At the end, when she was being poked and prodded by needles at the vet, the usual expression in her eyes of annoyance and pain turned to one of just defeat.  I knew she was done. I knew she was dying.  I forced the vet to stop, and allowed her to run whatever blood she had, but insisted that no more be taken.  I knew, simply by the expression in her eyes that my Lola was ready to stop fighting. My sweet pup passed away less than 12 hours later.

lola sad sleepy

And later that night, when Lola was barely able to even lift her head, I saw her eyes just glaze over.  They turned from defeat, to sadness, to peace, in just a few minutes time. She was ready,  she was letting me know it was coming even quicker than I had imagined.

She made a different expression and nodded at the floor, and although she usually loved the feeling of the cold floor next to her heavy coat and distended belly,  I instantly knew that she wanted me to grab a shirt with my scent for her.  I did, placed it an inch or two away, so she had a choice, and she immediately used every last bit of energy she had to scoot her face on top of it.

lola look

I left the room for a few minutes —  I didn’t want to leave her at all, but I had worked on a laptop next to her for the better part of 5 hours, and my computer battery was dying and my back was killing me.  We recently donated our couches and the new ones hadn’t arrived yet so I was sitting on a cheap folding chair, her on the floor beside me, instead of both of us being on a couch, possibly a regret– but she preferred the cool floor anyway.  I moved my laptop back into my office and plugged it back in, doing a few last minute pieces of work/writing.

I was gone for about 7 minutes when I heard a commotion.  The dog who hadn’t been able to lift her head or pick up her ailing body had slithered the better part of four feet and collided into a trash bag placed near the hall doorway.  She was trying to come find me.  I of course got up and ran to her, and the second she saw me, her tail, the only functioning part of her body, went crazy.   She was communicating that she loved me and that she didn’t want me to leave her.

So, I picked her up, grabbed a handful of  pee pads, fetched my pillows, kissed my boyfriend goodnight, and took pillows, puppy, and pee pads all to the guest bed, my former Master bed.

Lola passed away in her sleep, in her spot at the corner of my bed, which she slept in with me until she became incontinent.   I feel terrible that I too fell asleep in her hour of death, but I am comforted that I was so near and hope that she knows just how much I loved her and that I would have done absolutely anything for her.

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Over the last several years I have changed her pee pads,  cleaned her kennel,  driven her to the vet countless times, changed my schedule to work from home,  groomed her, bathed her, and I have picked up more poop and pee than could fill a football field.  And although annoyed, frustrated, even disgusted at the time — I would give anything to be able to do that again, or watch her beg for food, or scoot her bowl again.

It’s definitely the little things that we take for granted, and in some ways, the little things that are the biggest ways that our pets communicate with us.   Their stool, overturned bowls, pee, hair, destroyed toys and shoes, and even the messiest of messes can all indicate anger, frustration, fear, loneliness, boredom, anxiety, or even regret– so please eliminate regret from your own vocabulary of emotions by paying attention to every single blink from your little fur babies.

You may think that you need some training and buttons to communicate with your dog, but in the end, you just need a little patience, a little observation, and a lot of love.

Hug your puppy a little tighter tonight, and give her an extra treat on behalf of Lola.  I hope that my little princess will feel that sign of communication all the way up in heaven.  ❤

lola great closeup

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Uncategorized

1 week without Facebook

Today marks 7 days exactly since Facebook disabled my account, and I’m trying so hard to keep it together, but it’s not easy. I’ve actually woken up in cold sweats throughout the night and I’m embarrassed to even say that about something as seemingly trivial as social media.

Still, It makes me so angry that a company that made me feel like such a valued member of the community for 15 years, with little birthday graphics and friendanniversary videos is now treating me like a number; and even worse; like a spambot.

I cannot believe it has been 7 days and I haven’t heard anything back. I understand it’s a free service but I have several business accounts that I actively pay for that are all disabled. Even just a form response that someone is looking into it would make me feel better, but nothing. Literally nothing.

Of the 15 messages I sent on LinkedIn, I heard back from one person, a fellow Loyola New Orleans alum who said there was nothing she could do, it was a different team, and left it at that. She didn’t give me any advice or any contact information. How can a company that so publicly collects and shares so much personal information about their users not even be willing to share a simple business email address? It’s mind boggling.

I pray and hope that someone at Facebook will still reach out and I still continue to keep up the faith that they will see this message; that this was all just a big misunderstanding, that they will reinstate my account and all will be well. I think they have geniuses there who are kind and good people I just think they don’t know that I even exist at this point. If anyone knows anyone who can help me, anyone at all, please please please let me know.

I have tried to take the time offline and make it positive. I have more time to read and write and walk the dog and look after my other clients, while my team is handling the social media as best as they can without me. I may even be able to pick up a new hobby. And God knows I wanted to blog more as a record of what I’ve been up to both personally and professionally, so you can be on the lookout for all of my “status updates” to be posted via Instagram and Twitter @rosepetals220 and via word press, here and at http://www.quatrefoilcontent.com .

I would love it if you all kept up with me here instead.

Love,

Rebecca

Random Thoughts

Palette Cleanser — Random Thoughts — Why Saved by the Bell & High School Musical are the same show, 20 years apart.

I promised there would be some fun stuff here, too–   if I keep writing this way it may help my incessant post-breakup puking, but that doesn’t really lead to good readership, so here is something I recently thought about:   (I have a lot of random thoughts)

Has anyone ever noticed that Saved by the Bell & High School Musical are basically the same show?

The differences are obvious, they were filmed with different people, in two different generations, one’s a TV show and the other a movie series.

But the similarities:

Both feature a really handsome main guy with good hair who isn’t necessarily evil or a jerk, but he can often be unfair to his girlfriend and needed to be reminded of his immature and selfish behavior.   He’s good at sports and is known for being a school leader.

 

 

Said guy’s father has a good job in technology, or something, and often provides him with nice things.  He also has really good hair.

 

All of guy’s friends visit his house.  His bedroom is very brightly decorated in primary colors, and stuff from school.

 

Said guy dates a few girls, but his main squeeze is a really sweet dark haired girl.  She loves to dress very femininely.

 

Dark haired girl is besties with the “smart” girl

 

The “smart” girl can often tell people off.

 

 

But she ends up having a softer side when she falls for main guy with good hair’s best friend,   Who is really really good at sports, especially football & basketball.  He has curly hair.

 

 

 

There’s also a girl who’s obsessed with fashion and accessories.

 

The school colors are red and white.

 

And there are a lot of opportunities to show cheerleaders and athletes:

 

Main guy decides that for the summer, they should all go work at a resort.

 

Where main guy’s sweet girlfriend is a lifeguard, up until she is sick of his shenanigans.  She’ll eventually put on her white cover up and go off to find someone who can make her happier.

 

But not before they show off their singing and dancing abilities!

 

So in 20 more years, we can recognize this formula, and perhaps even beat producers to it with our own “robot” futuristic version of this high-school classic!

 

What are the other similarities?  Post them in the comments below!