February 16, 2009

Just like having a baby

Now I know not everyone agrees but mostly the people who don't agree have never had a dog. Take it from me; dogs are just like having babies!! Sometime I even feel like they are harder than having an actual human baby. A few examples would be 1.) A baby gets to wear a diaper. You don't have to take a human baby outside in the freezing cold (rain, snow, ice etc...) to let it go potty at all hours of the night (ie: 2:00 AM) 2.) Doctors are not allowed to deny your human baby medical treatment if you don't have the means of paying for it. It doesn't matter if it is a life or death situation or not. If you don't have the funds, all of the funds, they won't treat your dog. It doesn't matter that your dog IS your baby. 3.) With a human baby you don't have to buy expensive prescriptions for them to take PREVENTATIVELY. Which I am happy to do, by the way.

So take last night for example...Actually it was this morning at 1:00am. I had JUST fallen asleep after a very painful session of tossing and turning when Cooper jumped up and ran over to the steps that lead off the bed. Now Cooper isn't one who I have to take out in the middle of the night. He likes to sleep and doesn't get up for anything until at least 10 AM. However, I just thought he was being restless so I laid him down and told him to go "night night." He got up again and tried to get down. I was NOT catching on at this point. I told him again to "lay down and go night night." He got up again and this time I let him get down. I was thinking at this point that maybe he had to throw up. So I watched him run to the back door which meant he needed to go OUTSIDE NOW!! So I threw on my robe and let him out. There are 6 stairs leading to the backyard. He made it to the 3rd and just let it rip. Apparently he couldn't wait any longer and had an explosive bowel movement all over the steps. Great.

While I am extremely thankful that he at least made it outside...what do I do with diarrhea all over my back steps at 1 AM when it is like 20 degrees out? He goes on down to the grass when he is finally able to stop himself and continues his business in the grass. I go get a big bowl of steaming hot water to wash the stairs with. Bowl number one did nothing. Bowl number 2 sent some flying shit droplets on to our downstairs window. And bowl number 3 sent some of it flying down below. So on to the baby wipes. I got down and literally wiped up what I could see (and smell). Then, being the conscientious mom that I am, realized that the water would freeze and in less than 6 hours they would be walking down those steps again and I didn't want them breaking a leg or a neck. So I haul out the pet safe ice melt and treat the steps. Frozen watered down diarrhea. Lovely. I decide I will have to wait until daylight to do anything else.

I get Cooper inside, wipe his butt with baby wipes (yes, this is entirely necessary) and realize Cooper had stepped in it. So into the bath he goes. At 1:20 AM. Finally by 1:35 we are back in bed. Need I mention that we just paid $25 to have our comforter dry cleaned and I had literally put it back on our bed on Saturday??? One day. He is clean so it isn't like he is dragging it all over the bed....Right?

At 6:30 AM when the hubs takes the boys out to potty, I sit up and say "there is diarrhea on the back steps. I have to wait until daylight to clean them off. So it would be best if you took the boys through the garage so they don't step in it and track it in the house." What does he do? Skips the garage and takes them down the back stairs where the mess has not been entirely cleaned up. Yeah, great. Maybe he just wasn't thinking clearly because it was so early.

So there is my story. My dogs are my babies and I love them more than anything and am willing to put up with all of this because of the happiness they bring into my life. But if one more "human mommy" tries to tell me that having a dog is nothing like having a baby, I am going to invite her to spend the night at my house for a night. And just for all those people (like anyone is reading :)) who are like "you don't know because you haven't had a human baby" well, I was 16 when my brother was born and my mom broke her leg so most everything was on me at that point. Then I was 18 when my sister was born and I took on alot of the tasks with her as well. Even at the age of 10 when my other sister was born, I was the care taker because my mom was a single mom. I was basically my mom's live in babysitter for many, many years. And my stepdaughter was a year old when I showed up in her life. So my point is...I have definitely been around babies, live in babies and I know how hard they are. MY babies are just as hard. LOL.

February 14, 2009

Desperate Situation

I didn't disappear. Things have been crazy and I really haven't felt like I could put into words how I am feeling. This will be brief only because the more I think about it, the more upset I get.

Dec 27th 2008 my 10 year old sister (turned 10 in Nov) was diagnosed with type I juvenile diabetes. She is now insulin dependent. There is so much happening with this story and it is such a volatile situation right now that I am not going to go into too many details at this time. Let's just say though that her dad is trying to control every aspect of her illness against all dr's orders and against their advice. He is actually putting her in danger. First it was limiting her food intake. A common misconception about diabetes is that you have a restricted diet. Type 2 is includes diet restriction but not type I. Type I you aren't taken off of anything other than liquid sugar which includes pop, juice, koolaid etc...She can have whatever she wants, she just has to take insulin for whatever she eats. In fact, they specifically want her to eat the way she always has. Well her dad doesn't agree (like he thinks he is an MD or something). He is limiting her food. A lot. And letting her brother eat to his heart's content in front of her. Then he decided he would also limit her insulin. Yes folks, the stuff keeping her alive at this point. He decides she shouldn't be taking more than 40 units a day (This is very hard to explain so I won't. But she takes 23 units of insulin at night without food. That leaves her 17 units of insulin for an entire day's worth of food. That is crazy!) This is his way of controlling the situation. I stepped in and told the nurses what he was doing and they told him to his face that he is playing with fire and that limiting her insulin "disturbs them." He said "go ahead and be disturbed." Honest to god. I don't know what to do. Research is telling me that there really isn't much I can do. He can't really get in too trouble until something actually happens to her because of it. This is causing so much, SO MUCH stress in our family. We just don't know what to do. He won't listen. Not to us and not to the doctors. Who does this?

Now I have to let you know that my sister is doing amazingly well with all of this!! I am so very proud of her. She is sticking herself throughout the day every time she eats, before she eats, before sports, before sleep etc...And she is giving herself injections with everything she eats and at bedtime. She is ten folks. My step daughter is ten and I truly believe that if this happened to her, she wouldn't give herself an injection if her life depended on it. She won't even take liquid medicine without crying. But my sister wants to do all this on her own. Thank goodness for that because she is listening to the doctors and doing as much as she can for herself. Like her dose at night before bed is 23 units of Lantis (insulin) and her dad says "go ahead and just take 20" because he doesn't want her to take more. She takes the amount she is supposed to though because she understands how important it is. But she is also so hurt and confused over how her dad is acting. She has sat in all these day long meetings with the doctors, nurses and dieticians and heard them say "eat as you always have." And then her dad won't let her and yet lets our brother eat whatever, whenever right in front of her. It is unneccessary which also makes it cruel and she feels it. He has even decided to only let her eat sweets on weekends. And even that is limited. I just want to run away with her and get through this with her and without him.

She is being fitted for an insulin pump so that she will have better control over her blood sugars. However, her dad can't seem to find the time to get the paperwork filled out. I am so worried that he is going to let her run out of medicine. They can't afford it and the hospital is giving them free meds but in return he is supposed to fill out all this paperwork and bring in his last year's tax return. He is not complying. They told him that they won't give her more meds until he does this. Maybe he wants her to run out since he doesn't want her to take too much. How can a father do this?

They also have been evicted from their house and now live in an apartment with no furniture. They lost everything. Our mom lives out of state and wants to have her and our brother come live with her but their dad refuses. In fact if he feels like that is something that may happen, he will run and we will never see them again. I am sure of it. Their phones have been turned off and we haven't been able to get in touch with them. For all I know, they may have been kicked out of their apartment too. I don't know what to do. I feel so helpless in this situation. If I do something stupid, he will never let me see them again. So I have to go about this the right way. Excruciating.

Any suggestions? Keep in mind that my brother and sister have actually chosen to live with their dad and my sister currently wants to remain with him through 6th grade and then go live with my mom. Even through all of this. They love their dad so much. Even though he lets them down at every turn.

Please keep them in your thoughts.