Obstetricians versus Dog Breeders.byBOSTONFICTIONWRITER©
Isn't there or shouldn't there be a law or a guarantee that we can return our parents when we are done with them and/or when we don't want or need our parents anymore?
I was thinking how, as they age, when our parents are unable to care for themselves, and even though it is a terrible hardship for them to be so dependent upon their children, it is a real burden upon their children to care for them. Many of us are now confronting this difficult reality. It is sad to see our once active and vibrant parents now infirmed, incapacitated, and/or housebound.
It is a difficult time for those who care for an elderly parent physically and emotionally. Not only must we deal with the fact that our parent or parents can no longer care for themselves, but emotionally we must come to terms with that and accept it. It's tough getting old, especially when you no longer have your health and the only ones you can depend on are your children.
Nonetheless, when you think about it, it's only fair. They took care of us when we were children and they took care of their parents when they were elderly. Now, in their golden years it is our turn to repay them for their love, comfort, and devotion that they gave us in our infant and childhood years. Yet, with the hustle and bustle of today's lifestyle with everyone working, it makes it more difficult to find the time, summon the energy, and devote the commitment necessary to sustain our parents in their waning years.
There aren't many options in this country when it comes to caring for the elderly. Either you care for your Mom and Dad yourself or you put them in a nursing home. Sometimes, neither is an appealing option. The cost of nursing homes has skyrocketed with the wave of baby boomers quickly approaching AARP age. Moreover, you wouldn't keep your dog in some of these nursing homes. The conditions are deplorable bordering on abusive.
Then, I started thinking about my dog and made the connection from pampered pet care to elderly parent care.
When I bought my dog, Polo, from a Rat terrier breeder in Vermont, she would not sell me the dog unless I signed an agreement that should I not want the dog or could no longer care for the dog, I'd return the dog to her.
This is not a dog story. For those who started reading this story thinking that this is a dog story, it isn't. Sorry. Where was I? Oh, yeah.
Now, that I think about it, I had to sign an agreement that my dog had to be neutered. My parents on the other hand were never neutered or spayed. They should have been fixed though because they went ahead and bred my pain-in-the-ass younger brother quite by accident after an evening of celebrating my father's promotion with a bottle of champagne.
For the period in his life when his inability to control his passion for alcohol, loose women, and fast cars replaced his commonsense, I was my brother's keeper and had to bail his ass out of jail, but that's another story for another time.
By the way, this is not a sex with my brother story. For those of you who started reading this story thinking that this is a sex with my brother story, it isn't. Sorry. Now, where was I? Oh, yeah.
Of course, if I took the breeder up on her contracted offer and returned my dog back to her, I'd lose the $500 that I paid for the little pain-in-the-ass, I mean, my pampered pedigree pet. Honestly, there were days when I was temped to put him in the car by the scruff of his neck and drive him back up to Brattleboro in the middle of the night, especially when he was a puppy waking me up every two hours to go outside to pee, especially on those days when I had to be on my toes for an early morning meeting at work the next day.
Then, there was the time that he ate my good shoes, peed on my dumbbells, and bit the alarm guy in the balls. Okay, biting the alarm guy was good because the creep was spying on my girlfriend sunbathing topless in the backyard.
"Good dog. Good boy, Polo. Here's a cookie."
Buying Polo was my first experience buying a dog from a breeder. I named him Polo because all my clothes are by Ralph Lauren. I love his stuff. His clothes fit me perfectly without ever having to make an alteration. Also, by the coloration and markings of my dog, he looks like he is wearing a designer outfit, ergo the name Polo.
By the way, this is not a story about Ralph Lauren. For all those who opened this story thinking that this is a story about the famous fashion designer, it isn't. Sorry. Where was I? Oh, yeah.
I've had a dog all of my life, but all my dogs were rescued dogs from the animal shelters in and around the Boston area. I've heard enough about the puppy mills to know to never buy a dog from a pet store. Still, the fact that the breeder was willing to take responsibility for her animals that she bred and sold impressed me. Certainly, I felt relieved buying my dog from her knowing that he was healthy and never having been abused or cross bred, as are so many of the puppy mill dogs, he wouldn't have psychological and physical issues.
Further, I felt better about buying a dog from a breeder because breeders know everything about the breed. They are breed specific experts. Moreover, the fact that she had me sign a contract to return the dog should I no longer want him proved to me that she cared about her dogs, even after placing them in a home.
My little pal cost me more than two and a half times the normal price of an average Rat terrier. Normally, you can buy a Rat Terrier puppy, especially those with an all white body and a black head for around $150 to $200. She told me that he sold for more money because of his coloring, chocolate brown over white with tan markings, the fact that his grandfather was a champion, and because he was the new breed of Rat terrier.
My new breed of Rat terrier, long legged and sleek with a narrow body was made from a Manchester terrier, a Whippet, and an Italian Greyhound, instead of taking the Manchester terrier, Whippet, and Fox terrier. The ones made from Fox terrier's have short stubby legs and are more squat and muscular appearing than the Rat Terriers that have the long legs and sleek, narrow body of the Italian Greyhound.
Fortunately, those days that he kept me awake and destroyed my possessions passed, although he did bite the cable guy in the balls for stealing a peek of my girlfriend swimming naked in the pool.
"Good dog. Good boy, Polo. Here's a cookie."
I'm very happy with my little, faithful companion.
Alas, if only my girlfriend was as faithful as my dog. Actually, I'm just kidding about my girlfriend not being faithful. She's very faithful, I think. I hope. Only, sometimes I worry about her safety when it's after midnight and she's still not home from her ballroom dance lessons.
Of course, my girlfriend always has a valid excuse for coming home really late from her ballroom dance instruction because, she said, the classes are so very popular that there is always a big crowd who want to learn how to ball room dance, especially with the advent of those hugely popular reality dance shows, So You Think You Can Dance and Dancing With The Stars. She told me that the dance instructors want to make sure that everyone receives individual treatment from the head instructor Brazilian Raul, and I believe her.
Oddly enough, coincidentally, she experienced the same problem in coming home late when she had private tennis lessons. As she did with the ballroom dancing lessons, she didn't return home until well after midnight from her time spent with her handsome tennis instructor, Lance. Whoever heard of playing tennis at midnight but, of course, I believed her when she told me that all the tennis courts have outdoor lights. That makes sense, I guess. The Red Sox play night baseball games at Fenway Park with the outdoor lights. I mean, I trust her, kind of, not really, not at all. Shit, now I'm really worried.
Now, that I think about it, she was very late coming home from her swimming lessons, as well. She told me that she had to wait until they filled the pool with water. I guess that could take a while filling an Olympic sized pool with 200,000 gallons of water, then adding the chlorine and testing it before allowing the swimmers to swim.
Come to think of it, she's had a run of commitment schedules with her personal trainer at the gym, too. Every time she makes an appointment for Rod to personally train her, she doesn't come home until after midnight. What are the odds that someone so blonde, so beautiful, and so shapely would have so many scheduled time delays and appointment problems? I really need to buy her a wristwatch.
She starts taking golf lessons next week. I truly hope she finishes on time for once. Hopefully, she will. She told me that she has three golf pros banging, I mean teaching her. At least, I hope she said teaching and not banging. Maybe banging is slang for when you hit the golf ball off the course. I don't' know. She said something about the nineteenth hole. I thought there were only eighteen holes, but what do I know. I don't play golf.
By the way, for those of you who inadvertently opened this story thinking that this is not a story about my girlfriend having sex with her dance instructor; tennis teacher, swimming coach, personal trainer, and three golf pros; it isn't. Sorry. Shit, where was I? Oh, yeah.
Matter of fact, much like most of my stories of late, there is no sexual content, whatsoever in this story. Besides, my girlfriend only has sex with me, I think, I hope, sometimes, well, not for a while, a long time, actually. Since she's been taking all these lessons, dance, tennis, swimming, weight training, and golf, she told me that she was too tired to have sex with me. Maybe, I should start taking lessons, sex lessons at the Midnight Full Body Massage Spa.
Anyway, this story is not about my girlfriend having sex with others or about me getting a full body massage at the Midnight Full Body Massage Spa, as much as it is about my dog. Actually, it is more about my girlfriend's elderly mother, no longer able to care for herself, and has dementia than it really is about my dog. I mean, the only connection between my dog and this story is that my dog inspired this story. Allow me to elaborate.
After a difficult weekend my girlfriend had with her mother, her mother reverted to the time when she was a child. The stress and strain put on my girlfriend caring for her mother was too much and she pondered putting her Mom in a nursing home.
The time that she spends caring for her mother is the reason why she's been taking all these lessons. Actually, I'm the one who cares for her mother more than she does, since I work from home and my girlfriend is seldom home with all the lessons she's been taking. Yet, I understand her need to have some down time, but between her caring for her mother and taking lessons, I seldom see her...naked. Shit, did I just write that? Sorry.
Only, I had a better idea, at least, I thought it was a better idea. At the time I was only thinking of my girlfriend's welfare and physical and mental health. At the time, I was only thinking of me no longer having sex with my girlfriend because she was too tired from caring for her Mom and from taking dance, swimming, tennis, personal training, and golf lessons. Did I just write that, too? Wow, those sub-conscious thoughts are powerful. I'm really spilling the beans and washing my dirty laundry in public now. I'm so embarrassed, kind of, not really, not at all.
Her mother was born at Boston City Hospital more than eighty years ago. I figured what's good enough for my dog, my pampered pedigree pet, is certainly good enough for her mother. During the night, while my girlfriend soundly slept, I bundled up her mother and carried her out to the car. I told her we were going for a ride to someplace fun.
I drove her to Boston City Hospital, sat her in the waiting room, and pinned a note to her blouse. I figured because the hospital is so busy that it'd be a couple days before they discovered her.
'We are returning Kathryn to where she was born. We no longer want or need her. She's become too much of a burden for us to care for her. Rather than physically and emotional abuse her, rather than to let her wander and roam the streets and get hit by a car, we thought it best to return her from whence she came.'
They found her before I even drove home and had me and my car on surveillance videotape, which is how they tracked me down, by my license plate. They called my girlfriend and told her that her mother was there waiting for a ride home.
By the time I pulled in the driveway, all my possessions were on the front lawn with a note that my girlfriend had gone to retrieve her mother.
That was a wild nightmare. After waking up from that horrific nightmare, I was more understanding of my girlfriend's plight. My parents had already passed and were able to care for themselves to the very end. Yes, it's true I'm an orphan once my father finally died at age 90-years-old. I was fortunate that I never had to experience what so many of my generation are experiencing now with their elderly parents.
You know, for those who are really tired of caring for the pain-in-the-ass elderly parents, instead of pushing them down a flight of stairs and saying that it was an accident, think plastic bag. Okay, after watching too many episodes of CSI and how they can tell if someone suffocated by the blood in their eyeballs, maybe pushing them down a flight of stairs is the way to go.
Good luck with your old folks.