Sunday, September 21, 2008

And then, Elvis left the building

and collapsed in exhaustion.

We visited Grandma this morning. He loved it, he was fussed over, cooed over, received belly rubs, gave many kisses, was called cute a few thousand times. He ate it up.

My mother was delighted to see him and cuddled with him, and her roommate had to pet and coo too. Pretty soon the aides were asking him to visit other rooms. One man, the guy who winked at me a time or two, who I thought couldn't speak at all, can actually talk just fine. He asked Murphy's name, and petted him, and repeated "I love you Murphy." I think I'm the one who isn't cut out for pet therapy work, because that tore my heart out.

I promised to bring him at least once a week.

Years ago the vet had suggested that I turn Murphy into a therapy dog, and I thought that really didn't sound like fun at all. Then life intervened and I ended up hanging out in hospitals and nursing homes more than I'd ever imagined in my wildest John Carpenter movie nightmares. And Murphy tagged along from time to time, and showed a natural aptitude for therapy dog work: 1) he's cute; 2) he's friendly; 3) he gives kisses and accepts belly rubs; 4) he's fearless/oblivious around wheelchairs and walkers and whatevers. He enjoyed the hell out of his visit, and I had to promise everyone that he'd be back.

Unfortunately, even the prospect of touring the building with Elvis didn't get my mother out of bed. Her aide, a wonderfully kind woman, tried to coax her to sit up in the wheelchair so we could take Murphy visiting, but my mother said it hurt too much. She said that the PT guy tried to get her up yesterday, and her legs wouldn't hold her. She's 81 pounds, she's barely eating, and the C-diff rages on despite the 6 week blast of vancomycin. She appears to be on a fast downhill path, and it makes me so damn mad because, honestly - cancer, stroke, heart attack, there are so many normal ways to die. Antibiotic resistant bacteria in the intestinal tract is just so gross, and so frustrating.

I am going to try to play the Dog Card - tell her that she needs to be up in her chair and ready when I visit, so we can take Murphy around and show him off. Other people want to see him, and I don't want to visit and then leave her in the room while I take Murphy to greet his fans.

I also indulged in some retail yarn therapy this weekend - I followed an ad on KR, because WEBS had Euroflax Worsted on closeout - half price. I bought enough Celtic Blue for a sweater. I may go back for more. Because linen, half price, combined with sadness and frustration - yarn is better for the ass than Ben and Jerry's.

Good Things:
Girl put in an application on a townhouse 15 minutes from work.
The Redskins won.
The weather is just a smidge cooler.
I'm making Greek Chickpeas and Spinach tonight. It's awesome.


Anonymous said...

Well done, Murphy !!

From Ace and Harry (Italian Greyhounds), and Vegemite (The Ancient Moggie), in Callala Bay

Janet said...

Oh man, 81 pounds. That is so sad to hear. But way to go, Murphy. And good job on the Euroflax. I love that stuff.

Bess said...

Murphy has found a calling! I'm glad he's cheering your mom up.

B-More Dog said...

If you're interested, I know of a book that teaches scent games to your dog that would be good for therapy work - it's little "magic" tricks like "which card did I pick"

Also, do you have any interest in another cat? I know someone in FL who found a youngish male Bengal and her dog is not pleased....

B-More Dog said...

Oh, shoot, Catherine, that was from Amie (RoseByAny) I forgot which address I was signed in with.

Linda said...

"Yarn is better for the ass than Ben & Jerry's" LOL! I must remember that one.
Found my way over here from Spinning Fish Wife. Think I'll take a look around.

Anonymous said...

Murphy is the perfect little cuddler for the job. He's such a doll. :)

When I say the Euroflax ad, I thought immediately of you. Glad you reeled some in.


Catherine said...

Amie - a week late and I realized I didn't answer your comment! No, I don't know anybody in need of a cat - I have more than my limit, but I do adore Bengals. Murphy's "tricks" are simple - he gives kisses and submits to belly rubs, and in this audience, that's more than enough.