Monday, 2 April 2018

A little Easter Story

Just popping in to wish you a very Happy Easter!! I hope that you're enjoying the long weekend and the opportunity to get away and/or catch up with family and friends. It's been rather busy here with church services and all but now it's time to relax and recharge and in some ways I have my own little Easter story to share too before we get to the card.

In the middle of Lent, on March 5, the sad day came for Sally the beautiful Lab to say goodbye. She had been diagnosed with an aggressive cancer late November and she put up such a brave fight but it did spread and she let me know that she was ready to rest.  It was a sad day for everyone as we took her to our long-time friends at the Hallam Veterinary Referral Hospital.
For those that don't know, Sally was adopted as a 6 year old having been abused, had puppies and was frightened of everyone and just about everything too. I had just been told that I had 5 years to live with an inoperable tumour pressing on my brain that had also caused an aneurysm and I was discharged from hospital under Palliative Care. Sally was to be a companion but she surprised us all and became my unofficial and self taught Assistance Dog (she was too old to be officially trained). Three days after bringing her home she sniffed all around my head - she knew there was tumour there. When 6 weeks later I had a serious stroke causing significant left sided weakness, I had to decide whether to return her to the Shelter or as we had already bonded and she had started to come out of her shell whether to make the monumental effort to put her first and attempt to somehow give her the walks and socialising she needed.

As is obvious, I chose the latter and in return it was Sally that helped me walk again and am sure she is a lot to do with why I'm still here - almost 3 years longer than expected. Often in those early days I'd have to sit and rest on people's fences and on these occasions when she knew I was struggling she decided to take the lead. She would walk ahead of me just enough so that I could lean on her via the lead. She didn't look to left or right to explore - no, she'd just look back to check I was ok before slowly and steadily getting me home. She also would stand guard in the bathroom since I sometimes collapsed in the shower and she would always know before I did when I was about to be in trouble and would dance about and cry to alert me in time. It wasn't all work for her though as we also met a lot of other dogs and owners out walking and at the park as you do - some of which have become amazing friends. Sally had a few special dog friends - Monty,  above, whom she would play with for hours on end...

And our morning walking friends these last 7 years - her best girlfriend Tag and big Max who Sally adored.

It's been four weeks now and I am glad that she is at peace and know that it was the right time. A big thank you too, to all that have sent flowers and cards - it's so lovely to have such beautiful friends.
But it has turned my world upside down a little more than I expected. And not just mine, as one of her doggy friends is missing her too.
For now, I've decided to help an organisation to foster a dog looking for a new home whilst I make some decisions for the future. There are many dogs it seems that are killed in country pounds for no reason other than they have no room.  So groups from the city go out and rescue as many as they can take and they all need somewhere to live whilst they wait to be adopted  - which is where foster carers come in.
It is too early for me to commit to a new permanent furry friend yet but some company would be good and a new face on our morning walks should help cheer her friends too. So watch this space - I hope to hear in the next few days when I can bring home a furry foster friend to join us on our walks and adventures :-)

So with the telling of our little Easter story done, onto the card at last :-)

For a rather quick and simple card,  I've gone with last year's Easter Message stamp set.
The base layer is blended Distress Inks and and then I've stamped the palm on top in Tranquil Tide.
The main image is embossed in Gold and the Cross coloured using Watercolor Pencils. The little die cut branch is from the retired Botanical Blooms bundle.

Card stock: Tranquil Tide, Whisper White, Pear Pizazz
Ink: Versamark, Tranquil Tide, Watercolor Pencils
Stamps: Easter Message (Retired)
Accessories: Big Shot, Botanicals For You, Gold Embossing Powder, Metallic Sequins Assortment
Non SU: Distress Inks (Twisted Citron, Cracked Pistachio) Watercolor Card Stock -all Ranger (TH)

Thanks for popping by today and if you are looking for a new furry friend I can recommend adopting as one of the most rewarding experiences you can ever have. Not only will you have saved a life but you may well meet a faithful friend that will give you back far more than you can ever imagine :-)

I was asked by the Lort Smith Animal Hospital, whose shelter Sally (then called Cougar) came from to write our story for their Newsletter so I'll let you know when they will go ahead with that.

In memory of Sally, adopted 16/09/10 - 05/03/18


1 comment:

  1. Oh my Jan what a story - you had me in tears - I'm so pleased you and Sally found each other - its so hard when we lose a beloved pet and even harder when you have such a special bond. I wish you luck finding another dog to foster - I foster cats and its so hard to give them up when an owner is found. Sending you lots of hugs for the days ahead