Sometimes you need a real smack in the face to realize how much something means to you. This weekend was one of those times. (Please excuse grammar issues and tense changes in this. It will most likely be back and forth.)
We had a really fun time at the fireworks, which is a story for another night (or maybe tomorrow.) Tonight I tell the tale of Lily.
Back to the fireworks. We left our house sometime around 3:30 to stop and get some corn on the cob to eat at our friends' house. Then we spent the rest of the evening having a nice time out, with them. We walked in the door around 11:30pm. I took the girls upstairs to bed before worrying about letting the dogs in. I could see faces at the back door, and didn't think anything of it. It is now 11:45 and I am ready to let the dogs in. Two dogs come running in, Ollie, who we are watching for my friend, and Penelope. There is no Lily. I don't panic right away, I walk outside and whistle for her, "Lily, come on!" Nothing.
I go back in, put on my shoes and grab the mag lite. I searched every crevice in my back yard. Every spot that a fifty pound dog could fit, and many that there is no way she could fit in. Then I started to panic. I go back in, then out, I take my mag lite and shine it in our neighbors' yards (I wonder if they saw it.) I finally realize she isn't there, I am not finding her.
In my kitchen I stand, phone in hand trying to think of who to call. The folks we were out with live close and are most likely still awake. SK answers after two rings, and it comes rushing out. Lily is gone. I don't know what to do. He offers to come over and sit at the house while I drive around the neighborhood. I take him up. Calling for help is hard for me. I want to feel like superwoman and never need help.
He arrives and I do a few drive arounds and finally give up after a half hour. I was so tired. My mind was just exhausted. SK goes home, and tells me that if I need him or his wife in the morning just call. I tell him thank you, and go to bed. Well, actually I went outside and cried for a short time before going to bed.
Morning comes, and I run downstairs, thinking she will be there on the doorstep waiting to be let in. But alas she isn't. No Lily. Nothing.
I sit on the couch for a short time, and call my parents. I had no idea what to do or how to deal with it, I just needed to talk to someone. I feel a little better after the talk with them. Time goes by, I posted her as a lost dog on Pets911. Then called the pound with her license information. She wasn't listed but I was worried that she had lost her collar.
The girls were up by this time, and I had to tell them about her disappearance. They were visibly upset. Both worried about her. Time went by, and Will called. This is possibly the worst part of the day. I didn't want to tell him that she was lost. But I was so upset, so sad. I told him. I knew he wasn't happy, he prefaced the conversation with that. I knew I needed to keep it to myself, but I couldn't.
When he asked "How is everything? How are you?" I told him what had happened. He asked me if the gate was locked. It wasn't. We had removed the lock on our gate a time ago, and it had broken. I haven't replaced it. He was determined that someone stole our sweet pitbull to fight. If they had stolen her, why leave the other two dogs? And Ollie? He would have bitten someone who came in the yard. I know he would have. Will was upset, he told me to "Tell the girls I love them, Bye," and he hung up. I sat there, phone in my hand trying to figure out what that meant.
And then it happened.
I lost it. I started bawling, I was sobbing and unable to breath. I finally was able to calm down enough to call my Dad and ask him if they could come up. I knew I couldn't be alone. This is the breaking point, my breaking point. This was when I could no longer deal with life. My Dad said he needed to make a few phone calls and then he would let me know. (He is in the bishopric at church and needed to take care of some things.) My moms calls and says they are leaving. I sort of breath a sigh of relief, post this on Facebook
Leaner spoke to her husband... his lack of support, and blaming me for Lily being lost and telling me that since she is a pitbull someone STOLE her to use in dog fights was not what my fragile self needed. Am close to nervous breakdown, called my parents to come over. Really really scared at the moment.
and go upstairs to take a shower. (The girls are watching mass amounts of PBS kids at this time.) I cried in the shower for a good twenty minutes. I had the bad thoughts, the blame coated me, the fear coated me, the shame. I could not imagine what I was going to do. How would I live? How could I keep on? Maybe I needed to check myself in to a hospital, because this? I couldn't deal with this. I knew my parents were coming, it was the only thing that kept me from really panicking more at that moment. Lets just say, for a short time, harming myself was in my head. It was probably my lowest point, since I was 21. I felt that same pain and suffering that I used to feel when someone I really cared for broke up with me. Only worse, much worse.
I pulled myself together a bit, enough to put clothes on. I knew when my parents got here I would be going to the pound to see if she was picked up. I needed to be present enough at that time to leave the house.
My mom drove me to the pound, we walked up and down the cages, looking for her. Every step made my heart break a little more. All of those dogs, so sad, staring at us like we were the bestest things ever. And none of them was Lily.
We came back to the house, after a quick sweep of the streets again. No calls, nothing. We got some lunch and then hung out at the house for a while. Rhayn kept asking if we could go do something with eachother. Finally it was settled that we would go see a movie.
Have you seen Up? That is NOT the movie to see when you are in a messed up state of mind. There is death and that was bad enough. Then the rest of the movie is filled with DOGS. Every time they showed on, a tear would escape. I was sniffling and teary through the whole movie. The girls liked it, but me? Well, I will never be able to watch it again, without all of those feelings coming back. It was ruined for me.
Back home again, its now almost seven. My dad was going to check the air filter on the truck for me. So we stood in the garage. My mom had a talk with Rhayn about Lily, because she had thought Lily would be home when we got there. Rhayn was more upset than she had been. I told her that after Grandpa and Grandma left we would walk the streets for a little while and see if we could find her.
We decided to take the dogs with us, so I put leashes on them.But as we were walking away from the house Gwennie throws up. I took the dogs back inside and washed the vomit off of our driveway. Then we drink some water and all head out. We only walked a short ways, about 5 blocks in a circle to the houses behind ours. But the girls were feeling that at least we did something about finding Lily.
Into the house because Gwennie was "dirsty" as she says. I checked the caller ID. We had had 3 calls from a strange number. No messages though. I took the risk and called the number back. "Hello? Did you call my house?"
"Yes, I did."
At this point, with phone to my ear, I opened the front door because I needed to roll up the hose. In runs a dog.
"MY DOG!" I yell, into the phone. I follow her in.
"Did you have my dog?"
"Yeah, we found her."
"Do you live next door?"
"I don't know, I am standing in the intersection."
I walked outside to see Emoboy (probably 17 or so) standing in the street.
"Thank you! You have no idea how much it means to us to get her back. I have two little girls who are so happy to have her back." My eyes were brimming over and I was trying to keep it in.
"Thank you, really."
I was so shocked, and relieved and feelings I don't even have words for, that I just walked away from him, saying "thank you" over and over. (Like an idiot, I might add.) I may have said something else, but honestly, this was the haziest part of the entire day, it felt like I was in a daze and all I could think of was that Lily was home, and she was inside and I needed to touch her.
I walked into the house, and dropped to the floor by Lily. I held her tightly and felt like I might never be able to let go. I can tell she is hurt, she is limping and favoring her back paw. But aside from being really thirsty and a few scratches, she is home, safe and sound.
(I immediately called my parents to let them know, then posted on Facebook that she was home.)
I can still feel all of the stress in my muscles. I am so tense, and tightly wound that it will be a while before I am calm even though I am exhausted and haven't really eaten all day (aside from a corndog and some cottage cheese earlier.) I am going to pack a lunch for Rhayn (she starts chess camp tomorrow) and then go to bed.