Saturday, May 30, 2015

no matter the cost

So I picked up Copper, my "free dog", from his third heart worm treatment yesterday.  My husband had always said to me that with pets, we go by the "$500 rule."  What does that mean? Basically, if treatment for an illness for a pet costs more than $500, we forgo treatment, and pray for a miracle.

Heart worm treatment costs more than $500. A lot more.

And I can tell you the exact moment that the $500 rule went straight out the window.  The receptionist handed me Copper's treatment papers, and on the top of the paper it read..."Copper Phelps."
This dog has my name.  He belongs to me.  And I will fight to keep him alive, no matter the cost.

To be honest, the money is not the worst part. Money is money. I can live with it or without it and it comes and goes so darn quickly that how anybody has the time to worship it, or the stupidity to depend on it,  is beyond me.  The worst part of this crazy heart worm treatment is looking at this sad pup, uncomfortable and afraid, and not being able to explain to him the WHY...why I, the one who cares for him and loves him, is putting him through this suffering.  To him, it makes no sense.

I pet his head gently, pulling on his soft brown ears, kissing his sweet freckled spot just beneath his eyes, as his body shivers and shakes.  He pants, and I can feel his heart racing, and I hold him tight to myself whispering, "I have got you, Copper.  You are safe.  I am with you."  He does not understand that he is sick.  He does not know that there is something living in his heart, that will inevitably kill him.  He is completely unaware that there could be up to 250 worms, as long as spaghetti, occupying his heart.  There is no way he will ever know that the pain I am allowing him to go through is because I love him to no end, and it is the only way to save his life.

Ironically, Copper has the cutest brown spot on his back, shaped like a heart.  And it is in that exact spot that the vet has had to shave to give him his painful injections.  She has had to literally shave away at his heart.

He is sitting beside me now, sweetly and quietly.  He does not leave my side.  Despite the fact that I, the one he believes in and trusts, dropped him off over night for his painful and frightening treatment, he still chooses to stay close to me.  He does not know why he is going through this, but he trusts me none the less.

And so I reach for the silver crucifix I keep around my neck, and kiss it gratefully, remembering the dark and deep valleys of my own life, the painful nights, my own shaking and shivering, the shaving away at my own heart.  And with this faithful pup snuggled close to my side, I too, choose to cling to my own faith, and snuggle close to the one who loves and saves me over and over again; to the one that never ceases to purify my heart, removing from it all evil. This free pup has freed me after all, reminding me to not ask God WHY, and to simply go through whatever this life throws at me, sweetly and quietly.

Because I belong to Him.  And he will fight to keep me alive.  No matter the cost.