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Monday, May 14, 2007

 

A Magical Link to Writing

As I drove one of my best friends, Max, to his surgery appointment this morning, the theme song from the old TV series, The Six Million Dollar Man, played through my mind. “ . . . Gentlemen we can rebuild him, we have the technology . . . Better than he was before, better, stronger, faster.” Max isn’t an astronaut, and he didn’t endure a severe crash. He ripped his knee ligaments during an athletic romp outdoors, racing at top speed against a friend.

The surgeon told me that the tibial plateau leveling osteotomy (TPLO) requires restructuring the tibia bone below the knee and inserting a chrome pin where bones will rejoin. Fortunately, the surgery will also alleviate pain associated with his degenerative joint disease and arthritis. Max’s bones will heal fine, but it takes about three months for full recuperation with the first eight weeks being the most restrictive. Once his right knee heals, Max will endure a repeat operation on his left knee. Overall, he’ll return to an improved athletic state for the rest of his life.

I’m looking forward to being Max’s nurse. We share a magical bond. Max reminds me to take a walk and exercise when I’m frustrated, and he calms me when my fuse runs short. When our eyes lock onto each other, I feel comforted, almost like a déjà vu. He plays a large part in my writing atmosphere. With a pink-splotched-black tongue lolling out the side of his mouth, he lays by my side, occasionally turning onto his back for a belly rub. Sometimes he nudges his snout between my chair’s armrest and my elbow, telling me it’s time for him to eat, go outside, or get a back scratch.

Some people laugh when they hear how much I’m spending on my dog, but he’s a vital part in my tiny circle of life. In terms of writing he’s priceless. He soothes my surroundings, loves me just for breathing, and teaches my kids a calmness that only animals can convey. Writing wouldn’t be the same if I let him go before his time. In dog years he’s only 42.

How does you pet affect your writing life?

Sue

4 Comments:

Blogger Wow! said...

You made me love your Max. You'll have to let us know how he's doing. Probably with much less complaining than I do after surgery.

Sue, You hit my heart's button. My little buddy, Abda, a Shih Tzu. is definitely related to Max. The eye contact, telling me when to take a break, etc.

Two of Abda's most endearing acts for me is (1) the paw on my knee when I'm starting to get upset (when my nose reaches the monitor, I'm pretty sure I'm upset; but he can tell as soon as my heart rate accelerates...don't know how, but he can) and (2) he stands up in a perfect begging stance at 11 p.m. The look on his face is easy to read, "I'm a dog...and I know it's time to go to bed!"

How does he affect my writing? He allows me to write from a warm heart...the only heart I ever want to write from.

Beryl

PS Abda means servant, and he knows I am.

3:58 PM  
Blogger Jean said...

Here, it's Sam the cat. He likes to jump on my desk and get between me and the puter.

There's just something about a purring cat I just love:-)

Jean

8:09 PM  
Blogger Angela said...

Noodle, my short-haired tabby, helps me in more ways than one. When I'm stressed all I have to do is wrangle her up (this involves searching my loft until I find her), go bug her a little bit until she wakes up, then she'll get up, plop back on the ground and roll around on the ground so I can pet her caramel-colored belly... it's like heaven to me. All my stress melts away and I become buttery. Then I'm able to work again from a new perspective.

At night, she puts me to bed by spooning with me, and I drift off to dreamland with the low rumble of her puuuurrrrr. :-)

I could write a novel about the funny things she does, so I better stop here!

9:27 PM  
Anonymous Nienke said...

I have a dog and two cats, and they're always in my office making sure I don't get lost in writing for too long. My one cat likes to walk over the keyboard and ends up writing the odd scene. He also has a 'thing' for the cursor. The dog likes to remind me that we could have lots of fun outside.
My other cat has been a sick boy. He's costing us a lot too (read second mortgage) - but he's my cool guy cat who just lies in a kitty bed on my desk and purrs as I work.
All of them - their energy gives me energy.
Thx for this post.

10:44 AM  

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