11 September 2005

Where is the Rewind Button?

In an earlier post, titled "When Chihuahua's Attack!" I wrote:

Little Bubba has this same spirit. He thinks he is the meanest Mutha around, and a great hunter to boot! Rabbits easily outdistance him. Squirrels enjoy it when he gives chase, and then they turn and taunt him from halfway up the tree! When he is on one of these "quests" he is a blockhead with selective hearing... he may as well be deaf! Forget thinking you have any control over him! Of course, I've grown quite fond of having "blockhead" around... can't imagine coming home and not having him meet us ecstatically!

Friday was a beautiful day... 85 degrees, cloudless. I was puttering around, tending to honey-do's. I had replaced the thermostat on my work car... was satisfied I had the problem licked, and was in the process of putting my tools away.

Little Bubba was supervising, in addition to insuring the ferocious squirrels didn't try to come too close to me while I was working.
He was doing a great job!

One last squirrel tried to approach, and Lil' Bubba went after him. The squirrel went up, then twice around the Cottonwood, then hit the ground about 5 feet in front of Lil' Bubba. They both made a headlong run at top speed toward the road, just as the first car in 20 minutes headed Eastbound on our street. The squirrel escaped in front of the car, and I watched in hope that the car was going fast enough to clear the road before Little Bubba crossed. But he was too fast, and ran full speed into the front wheel.
I saw him thrown 3 feet in the air like a rag doll, then lie motionless, perfectly parallel to the road, on the gravel alongside our yard. He quivered a little, but there was "nobody home" in his eyes.
Mercifully, neck completely broken... He was gone.

A three year old Red Dachshund, in perfect health... slender...
a beautiful specimen.


I'm devastated.

No sleep the first night, and for two days now, I've been lookin' for life's "rewind" button, to go back to 5 minutes before the incident and take Little Bubba in my arms.

At safety briefings while I was in the Army, they frequently showed us a chart which had the stressors of life listed. Each of the stressors had a numerical value, and Commanders and safety officers were supposed to keep an eye on their Aviators for cumulative stress in their lives. At the top of the chart was "Loss of Spouse or Child", and let's say that value was 10.
Divorce was up there too, with a value of 9 or so.
Loss of employment was high, as was serious illness and financial complications.

Managers were to use the chart as a guide... if total stresses exceeded a certain value, and it would have been in the neighborhood of 9-10, an Aviator could be grounded until his personal situation was more under control.

Loss of a beloved pet should also be high on that list. It is Sunday night as I type here, and I am starting my work shift. I'm still easily reduced to a blubbering, incoherent blob when I think about no "Little Bubba" to greet me when I get home in the morning! If I had been scheduled to work on Friday or Saturday night, I would have called in "sick".

I think I am now at the point where being at work will be therapeutic... being away from home with a task to pursue will help me to get back to a routine.

But at home... I hear sounds like his bark, I see his little head at the door, begging to come in after he has been out to "take care of business"... when I sit down I expect him to assume his normal position on my lap.

Sara Jean has not been able to force herself to clean his nose prints off our front door.

How does anyone survive the loss of a child, or a wife/husband of 60 years?

Little Bubba, (Frankie) was a bigger part of our life than we could have realized...

It's gonna take a while to recover, folks.


Anonymous said...

Oh Greybeard, I am so sorry for the loss of your Little Bubba. Isn't it sad how things can change in the blink of an eye? The last pet that I lost was a red heeler puppy. We were all devistated. I cried for a solid week, broke down at work and rinsed my dishes in tears on several occasioins. Everytime my mind got still all I could think about was "Little Red". I longed to see him chew up my shoes again, pee in the floor and get in the garbage. We have all have those, "where is the rewind button" moments in our lives. It's tough but the sadness will ease with time as I am sure you know. My thoughts are with you dear.

P.S. Here is a Poem for you. Rainbow Bridge

Anonymous said...

Oh sweet Cousin - I am so sorry for the incredible loss you have incurred. Cory's wonderful Duke, my cats Sassy and Zoomer (appropiately named) are such a major part of my life - much like our children. Ron does not completely agree - but he understands my heart and therefore tolerates in love. To watch a life you cherish so dearly and taken like you did is painful beyond words. Please know my heart grieves for you and your loss.
Our neighbor has a pitbull that has been impregnated by a labrodor - interested? Maybe Ron would let me drive it to you (the big adventure!! how fun!!)

phlegmfatale said...

omg.thanks for sending me here, and i hope time has salved your wounds at least a little. As I look at my little doxie boy today, I can't imagine losing him - it's too unbearable to consider. Before I let them hav ethe run of hte house today, I'm doing a sweep and getting up all plastics. not taking any chances. Will alter my post accordingly, too. Thanks for this heads up.