Prayers for Puppies

Toby had a good day yesterday. He got a nice warm bath, lots of wholesome treats, and time to rest on the couch. I even found him lying next to 8-month old Vincent in the middle of the family room carpet, soaking up the warm afternoon sun that streamed through the window. He also went for a walk with George, 2-year old Eva, and Mandy.

As I observed Toby throughout the day I kept thinking how, with the exception of the missing eye, one would never know he was ill. He just seems like our regular guy; big, strong, quiet, and handsome.

Of course, though, we watch him like a hawk.

“Does Toby seem more tired to you?” I ask George.

“No, I don’t think so,” he replies.

“You said he weighed 67 pounds? Isn’t he usually closer to 70?”

“Well, he has been walking all winter so he might have trimmed up some.”

“Do his shoulders seem sunken?”

“No, it’s just when he’s sitting. When he stands, it goes away.”

“Did he eat all his dinner?”


Then we realize how we sound and make a few jokes.

“Has Toby always been black-and-tan brindle?”

“Has he always had four legs?”

“Has his name always been Toby?”

We were lucky to secure an appointment for Toby next Tuesday at the Animal Cancer Clinic. Both traditional and alternative sources recommend chemotherapy for his type of cancer, and we keep hearing he is a good candidate for it because he’s young and otherwise healthy. We’re crossing our fingers that is the case.

We still don’t know much about anything at this point. And—we’ve been wrong on everything we thought we knew, so who knows. I’m staying positive. Positive thinking may not help much, but I know that negativity will certainly hurt.

Eva and I said a prayer for Toby on our way to Jazzercise this morning and I know other people are praying for him, too. I know God must hear prayers for puppies.

I got a break last night and spent the evening with some friends. I have a circle of girlfriends—Carley, Apryl, Kim, Heidi and Heidi— that goes back 28 years, to when we all met in kindergarten. We get together for dinner once a month. We used to meet at restaurants until we realized how much more fun and relaxing it is to rotate meeting at one of our houses and bringing a dish to share. And, because most of us are mothers (our kids range in age from 10 weeks to 7 years old), our children can also come if need be.

I’ve had to miss the last few gatherings because George has been away fishing and I have been exhausted, but he was happy to babysit both Eva and Vincent for a couple of hours last night. It’s hard (and actually, feels quite unnatural) to leave my house and drive off alone, but it’s important to do sometimes.

I chuckled to myself as I left Apryl’s house last night because I’d made an observation. When her cell phone rings, it plays a song by Justin Timberlake. Kim’s plays Bon Jovi. You’ll hear George Strait on mine.

That’s why we’re still friends after all these years: We’re similar enough to stay close, different enough to keep it interesting.

Toby Resting in the Sun



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