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Wednesday, April 30, 2008

April has been a tough month....

Only one more hour until it is over...Come onnnnnnnn May!And when I say "tough" I mean really tough.

So, get comfortable. I will fill you in.

April started off well enough. My Scrapbook room was on its way and my birthday this month. How bad could it be?

Well, it go bad. I was running late one afternoon picking up the kids from the bus stop. I was rushing. While I was loading Quinn up in the car, I saw that the dogs had gotten into a trash can. I quickly pick it up. Then got in my car. Forgot my keys. Ran into the house. Came back. Started my car. Messed with my Ipod then put it in reverse.

I hit something. I heard a yelp. I screamed "no no no!". Ran out of my car and saw my Ruby under my car. I started to cry. I pulled her out. One of her legs was limp. I knew it had to be broken.

I ran into the house calling for my brother. I told him I had backed over Ruby and needed to take her to the vet. Asked him if he could pick up the twins. I ran into the house. Called my vet. They were closed. Called the ER Vet, got Ruby in the car and off I went. I called James while I was driving down there. Voice Mail. I was hysterical. My little Ruby. Sweet Ruby. I prayed she would be ok. I did not know where I hit her. I did not know if she had internal bleeding. I was so scared and so guilt ridden.

Got to the ER Vet. They took an x-ray and said she had a twisted fracture in her femur and would need surgery. But they could not do it. I had to leave her there overnight and pick her up at 6 am the next morning to get her to the vet who could do it (90 minutes from my house). Not a problem. I knew I would do anything for her.

Got home. Cried. Cried some more. Our dogs are our family. The guilt I felt was unmeasurable. I did not get much sleep that night.

So, the next morning I packed Quinn in the car and off we went at 6 am. We picked up Ruby and drove the the other Vet. When we got there, they told me that the break was more complicated than what the other vet told me. Multiple fractures. Very Serious. And one more thing. They could not do it. They said my best bet was to go to Virginia Tech and have their specialists do it.

I asked what were my options. This is what they are:

1. VA Tech
2. Amputation
3. Put her down

Well, #3 was not an option. And #2 wasn't either. I did this to her. I needed to do whatever I could to fix it.

My decision was made. I asked how far VA Tech was. It was 3 hours south of them. I started to panic. I was not prepared for this long trip. I did not pack enough bottles or diapers for Quinn. I could not stop to get the things I needed because I had an injured dog in my car. So, I hoped Quinn would sleep for the ride down there and I would pick the items I needed for him once I dropped off Ruby. Quinn was sweet enough to do that for me.

I got down the VT and they took Ruby in. The doctors there told me they needed to do x-rays and a blood work. It would take 40 minutes. At this time, Quinn was getting hungry. I asked them if I could go to the grocery store (2 miles away) and pick up things for the baby. They told me "no, you cannot leave" At that moment I was getting irritated. I mean I drove 3 hours to get to them with a 3 month old baby. What did they think I was going to do? Just leave her there and and not come back? Ugh! Anyway, I waited. And waited. Poor Quinn. I felt like the worst mommy ever@

Well, they looked at the x-rays and they told me there would be 2 plates they would try to put on her femur and metal rods. I did not really understand. I just wanted her leg to be fixed. That is all. I told them to do whatever they could to help her. The surgery would be tomorrow. I thanked them and walked to the car.

Since they had Ruby settled in and we left to go home. now, Quinn had been a trooper. Not really fussy. But then he hit the wall. You would too if you had spent 8 hours in a car seat on a warm day sweating your diaper off.

First stop grocery store. Bought diapers, formula and a couple other things for our trip home. I am still a wreck. Quinn is a wreck. I am not looking forward to the ride home.

I stopped 6 times on the way home. Quinn was done with the whole car seat thing. So, I had to find department stores or malls, so I could take him out and walk him around. Did I mention i did not have my stroller either? Excellent.

needless to say. The trip home took longer than the trip down. We got home @ 8:30 pm. 14 1/2 hours on the road. Quinn and I were exhausted. We both went straight to bed. He slept like a rack. I on the other hand did not.

The next day came. The doctors at VT were going to call during the surgery to give me updates. But by 11 am, I heard nothing. I was freaking out a bit. I called them and the person on the phone told me that they Ruby was in surgery and had been for about 2 hours. He would check with the doctors and have someone call me back.

30 minutes later they called. Bad news. They had tried everything but the plates would not hold. James and I had to make a decision. We were back to option #2 and #3. Remember what we said about option #3? Well, #3 was still NOT an option for us. So, her leg would be amputated.

They called after the surgery and then next 4 days. They said she was doing really good. Walked on the three legs the day after the surgery. They were amazed. I wasn't. That was my Ruby-girl. Stubborn and full of spunk.

I picked her up the following Monday. It was the longest drive. I wanted Ruby home but was feeling so much emotion. Knowing that Ruby would not look the same. That she would not be able to adjust. And that she would be different towards me.

When I walked into VT and they brought her out, I stifled a cry. My poor Ruby. Ruby was whimpering. I thought at first that she was in pain. Then i saw it. Her tail wagging. And she was pulling the doctor down the hallway trying to get to me.

When she got to me, I sat on the floor and gave her a big hug. Saying "I am so sorry Ruby" over and over again. She replied back to me with lots of doggie kisses.

Then we went home.

Her incision has healed up well and the staples were taken out last week. She was getting around good on her 3 legs and I have seen her running now and then.

I am typing this all down now 3 weeks after this all happened and it still brings me to tears. I hate that I did this to her and I could not fix it. If you knew Ruby, you would see how full of life she is. And I feel so guilty about all this. She loved to run and jump. And people tell me that she will again. That it just takes time. But it does not subside the guilt I feel inside.

I keep replaying that day in my driveway. Why didn't I walk behind the car like I normally did every day? Why was she laying behind my car? Why didn't I know she was outside? So many "whys" and "what ifs."

But she was doing well and she was alive. I was optimistic for the first tme since the accident.

But we have had a set back. Since she only has 3 legs, she puts more pressure on the elbow of her remaining leg. And that pad that is on the elbow has gotten infected. There is now a hole in her pad and we are now packing it with gauze. It looks pretty bad and Ruby does not like the bandage on her. She goes off and hides and takes it off. It is not that difficult because it is at an awkward place. So, I have to keep an eye on her. This has to heal. I cannot risk it getting badly infected. I cannot imagine what we would do if that happened.

And I can't. I will be positive. I have to be.

My birthday was a blipp that went by.Maybe I should be grateful that I did not have time to realize that I turned 38. ha haa...

So, that is it. That is what I have been doing for the month of April. Taking care of Ruby along with my normal day routines. It has been hard. But things will be better. May will be better.

Come on May!

And look at that....it is 1 minute past midnight.

Buh bye nasty April...I will not miss you

P.S. I will post other things I did this month but I think this is enough for now. I am sorry I have been MIA (again) but I hope you can understand why now.

4 comments:

ginger said...

oh my gosh you have had a rough april! may the may fairies come and bring you sunshine and happiness! and lots of doggie kisses from Ruby on her continued road to recovery!

dawn said...

OMG Kathy! Seeing this in writing even after you telling me seems like such an ordeal! I hope that Ruby AND you are doing much better! I hope we can chat again real soon. Go Tony Go!!!

Stacey said...

Kathy,
I am so sorry that you have had to go thru such heart ache. Animals bounce back quickly, Ruby will be ok. Sending you lots of love and hugs!
Stacey

Debbie said...

Oh my gosh Kathleen!!! I hope you are doing better...I know I am late reading this. I had a dog who had to have a leg amputated and he recovered so well and learned to do everything and he acted like it was nothing after awhile. Ran around like crazy. I'm so sorry for all you went through.