Over the past four years I have become accustomed to filling in the blanks on various forms...marital status, spouse's name and date of birth, person to contact in case of emergency, etcetera, etcetera. In fact, if you asked me a few days ago, I would have told you that while filling out forms still annoys me I have learned to manage my feelings regarding the dreaded blanks on any form I fill out.
Last week our dog Terra (isn't she cute?) managed to get a burr up her snout. My very capable daughter took her to the emergency vet (I was in Texas and talking to her by phone at 2:00AM) where the burr was removed and we were told that Terra is showing signs of arthritis. This news created the need for an appointment with our regular vet, which is where I was standing, chatting with Terra, when I saw it. Looking over the file the vet left on the table, the word deceased stared up at me. And tears came to my eyes just like that. Blindsided once again.
Why, why, why are even dogs required to have two parents?! How does knowing my husband is dead change my dog's veterinary needs? Please do not tell me there is some other handbook on how to handle doggie grief that I have yet to read! The world swirled for a minute while I raged at the need for forms of any type. Then I wondered what would have happened if I were just a single girl with a dog...do they write "no husband" next to the names of women who fit into that category? Finally I was just sad. Because there I was sitting in the vet's office, worried about my puppy, staring at a form that reminded me that Phil is dead.
As Terra and I headed out the door, she wrapped her head around the back of my leg and gave me a 'take me home please' look. I paid for the visit, picked up her prescription, loaded her in the car, peeked at the tires of the car to be sure they didn't need any air, started contemplating what to make for dinner, and then laughed out loud. My husband is indeed dead, but somehow I am managing.