Josie smiling

Josie smiling
One ear up and one ear down...my trademark look

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Finally back after a couple months off...so much to tell!

Josie and Blues trying to stay still....LOL.
My blue-eyed boy Blues.
My brown-eyed girl Josie, sitting up for a cookie.
Josie looking sweet.
Those blue eyes.....
Blues snuggling with Nigel.
Gertrud and myself after our tubing adventure.


Josie giving Nigel some loving.































As you all know, I took some time off after my patient John had passed away in March and I befriended his wife Gertrud. All this after sleeping on the floor on a doggie bed with Josie for three weeks while John was in Hospice care. I would do it again in a heartbeat. I don't regret a second of it.

I did stop back in on my birthday, May 24th, only to find out that our beloved friend MaxDog had passed on that day. What a sad day that was. I posted my condolences to MaxDog's mom, who has a new beautiful blog called Living Life to the Max, but decided I still needed to take some time off to spend with Gertrud and myself.

I had grown quite close to her and she to me. Something I was not ready for was the sadness that accompanied John's passing in March. It enveloped myself and Gertrud. At first I didn't understand what it was. But it crept up on me until I was fully wrapped in it. I couldn't escape the feelings. I didn't know what to do, so I went to see a Therapist. Funny, the Pet Therapy person seeing a Therapist. But, hey, what I do is all volunteer work. I am not trained. I just give from my heart. And someone had passed away. And there was a great loss, a void. And I also had became very attached to him and his wife. Now what?

And not only was I down or sad from it, now there was his wife, who was dealing with his death, and 54 years of marriage and I wanted to help her. So I did what any friend or family member would do, and I was there for her. I still am. What I learned was that the best thing I could do for her is just "be" there for her. Let her "be" sad, with me being with her. Try not to "cheer" her up. That is my natural persona. Try to make them laugh or smile, but I learned, just to be. And it's an awesome lesson.

We have become very close, Gertrud and I, and I am very blessed to have a good friend like her. We have adventures together. She's experienced some firsts with me. I took her tubing down a river. We ate crabs together. She flipped out of a pool and was okay (that was not planned!). She bought a new car. Yes, a new car. I helped her trade in her two cars, one of which only had 2,300 miles on it, the other 30,000 miles and buy a new car. My cousin works at a local car dealership, so we got her a fantastic deal.

Josie and I have been visiting the hospital on Fridays to visit Pediatrics and we visit a special school for children every other Wednesday on our lunch hour so the kids can read to her. Once in a while we do adults at the hospital, but it's only because I am spending so much time with Gertrud right now. I also went and got Josie's and my certification at another hospital right around the corner from the one hospital we go to so in the Fall we can start going to both hospitals.

Blues has been growing like a weed. Seriously!! I think he has Greyhound or Whippet in him!! When he runs his ears go next to his head the way a Greyhounds do and his legs are sooo long and so is his tail. He just screams Greyhound! So I think he is a Shepherd/Husky/Greyhound mix. But he is so sweet. I really think he is going to make a wonderful Therapy Dog one day. Love those Greys!!

I seriously want to thank all my FB friends (you know who you are) who gave me my boosts each day to keep me going through all of this and all my Blog Friends who checked in with me. God Bless you all. My hubby (love him) got me a Macbook Pro for my birthday so I will be checking all of your blogs.

Thank you for being so supportive and loving. I love you all. xoxo

Much love and Woof!!

MB, Josie and Blues

P.S. A very special THANK YOU to our good friend Nigel for his "nipping at my heels" about getting back to blogging. Thanks Nigel. It's good to be missed. Love you dear friend.

P.S.S. A shout out to Sierra Dog and her folks. I will talk about them in my next blog!! They went and did a very nice thing!

P.S.S.S. I hope you all like my new look. I am working on it as we speak...much love!

39 comments:

  1. Wow, I am very sorry to hear about John. It must have been very hard on Gertrude, and hard on you, too.

    No shame in going to a therapist - I hope it helped - I know from experience that it can be good to talk things out with a person outside of the loop.

    In any case, I'm glad your back - I commented your blog for the first time months ago and didn't know where you had gone. Hoping to learn more about Josie's therapy dog adventures in the coming weeks and months.

    Sam and MargeDog

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  2. What a very nice "I'm back" post. You are truly an amazing person!

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  3. Glad to see you back. How wonderful that a beautiful friendship has bloomed from the death of John. I bet he is smiling on both of you.

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  4. Yippee! We are happy to have you back. It is nice to get away and have time for yourself, but you've been missed. Blue sure has growed alot. We like the new look.

    Waggles,
    Bijou

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  5. So glad to see you back blogging, sweetie! Ah, the lesson of "just being" with someone, letting them be sad instead of trying to cheer them up... it's a hard, but important one. You are such a good friend to Gertrude, and what a difference you make to the world. Love you, earth angel!

    Love,
    Kat and Cloud

    PS. Blues is getting SO big!!!

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  6. Yay! You're back :)

    We have missed you and we are so glad that you and Gertrude are still good friends.

    We are looking forward to hearing more about all of your adventures :)

    Kisses,
    Emma Rose and the Duchess

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  7. We are new friends of yours but glad to hear that you're back after an extended absence. I'm sorry to hear about the passing of your friend and the difficulties you've experienced because of it. Take care. ♥

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  8. So good to hear that both you and Gertrude are feeling better :) That tubing picture is fantastic! We've missed you.

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  9. It's good to see you getting back into the swing of things!

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  10. You are such a kind and caring person. We all need extra special people near when the hard times hit. I am certain Gertrude is so happy God put you into their life....you were what they both needed. Bless you for being there....
    Mr. Blues is growing! WOWZERS! Josie is a doll as always!
    Glad you are back!

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  11. Welkhome Bakhk to our khute and special furiends!

    Khome on by my khorner when woo are in the neighbourhood!

    Hugz&Khysses,
    Khyra

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  12. Hi Marybeth!! we're so glad you're back in the blogging community!!
    How I wish all volunteers were as kind as you!
    All the people who know you(including us) are so lucky to befriend such a wonderful person!! welcome back!!!!! Blues has grown SO MUCH!!

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  13. Oh it wasn't really nipping. That was just a love bite...

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  14. I am happy to see you again!
    Glad everything is ok!
    I know Gertrude really appreciates that you are there for her.
    Kisses and hugs
    Lorenza

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  15. Hello there dear friends...and welcome back!!!

    It is really wonderful to see another blogpost of yours and so touching to be able to read about what's happened in your life during your absence. Thank you for sharing what has obviously been a tough time for you. (I know it's not easy)

    Many people shy away from sharing these difficult experiences - afterall it's 'cyberspace' and our readers are virtual strangers...or are they?

    The truth through is that by sharing our difficulties, we are able to touch the lives (and therefore help) of others who may be struggling with similar issues.

    Grief is a difficult thing at all times! Everybody will experience it sometime during their lives...but not many wll allow themselves to talk about it. The reason is that it is unique to each person and it is a lonely space.

    Grief is also so much more difficult when we are caring, giving people ourselves who are trying to help others in their grief. The kind of grief you have been faced with is one where we have to give ourselves 'permission' to grieve.

    Like you, I'm also learning not to take ownership of the heartbreak of others, but to merely give them the opportunity to have someone to listen to their heartache and try to understand their reality. When I am deeply affected by their difficulties, I acknowledge that, embracing it to be the learning experience that will allow me to grow as a person.

    To be able to empathise honestly with someone who is struggling and to 'be there' for them is one of the ultimate acts of love.

    It's a hard process to learn to do this - to honour oneself and our own emotions whilst assisting those of others - and that is exactly what you have accomplished. It very hard and very difficult - I know this because I've been through it myself.

    I commend you for returning to blogging! Thank you for sharing your life and the lives of Gertrude, Josie, Blue, your other therapy recipients, but most of all...your love!

    Welcome back!

    Please be gentle on yourself and know that we love you too!

    Sending lotsaluv
    MAXMOM IN SOUTH AFRICA

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  16. We enjoyed our visit to your great blog!
    ~K and the Pups

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  17. welcome back, i was beginning to worry for fear something happened since you disapeared from blog land right after you got Blues. love the new header of Josie and they eyes photos are great. it makes me happy to know you were doing something that was needed and that helped her and yourself. phooey on the blues ear standing up, i thought for sure you would have two flop earred dogs. they are both beautiful

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  18. Hey MBK and Josie,
    I knew as you were updating me about your experiences with John & Gert that you were investing ALL of yourself completely (it's what you always do -- whenever you decide to do ANYTHING, you put 200% of yourself into it!)
    It's amazing. AND, to learn that you don't HAVE to be funny, to try to make someone laugh -- to know that just BEING there is enough. What an IMPORTANT thing to realize, because you might think you're not accomplishing enough -- when just being there IS enough. That's a beautiful lesson! I am sure that Gert is so glad you are her friend, and understands and appreciates your kindness. That kind of devotion is incomparable.
    Love, your little brother
    PS: Those pics of Josie and Blue are incredible -- they're really so cute they just make me laugh! HA HA HAAA!! LOL!

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  19. Thanks for catching us up on all that's been going on in your life! We are thankful for you, and everything you do.

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  20. Welcome back! I have missed you and wrote a few times on your blog b/c I wasn't sure how else to get ahold of you. Glad that everything is going okay. Gertrude is so lucky to have found such an amazing person to help her through her loss. I am sorry that the loss hit you so hard, it is very hard to lose someone that you love so much. I still cry almost daily about the loss of my Grandpa and that was back in May 2009. The pain never goes away, you just learn to live with it and try to move forward because that is what they would want us to do.

    OMG...Blues is SO adorable. He is getting so big.

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  21. miss MB,
    i'm a new friend, but it's still way nice to have you back! you are such a caring lady and a wonderful friend to miss gertrud. oh, and i totally dig your bloggie look...maybe cuz it's the same one i am using? teeheehee!! :)
    *woof*
    the booker man

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  22. It is wonderful to read about you and your dogs again. Mistaya and I have missed your posts. Hugs to you, Mistaya and M.O.M.

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  23. Some of the most wonderful friendships just happen. You and Gertrud were meant to meet for some reason and now you're there for each other.

    And, oddly enough, there's a sweet little doggy for each of you! :) Those blue eyes on Blues are incredible, and of course Josie is a beautiful as always.

    Great to see you back! And I do love your new design!

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  24. Good to see all of you again. You returned to your blog about the same time my internet connection started acting up, I have gone most of the last week with no connection.

    I'm glad to hear all is well. I think it is great that you and Gertrude have formed a friendship, it will be good for both of you.

    Hugs,
    Judy

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  25. Welcome back Josie and Blues...we missed you and are tickled to see new pictures and how much
    Blues grew.
    Madi and MOm

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  26. So now that you're back...

    We gave you an award! Stop by our blog to pick it up!
    http://rescuek9-dogs.blogspot.com/

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  27. A very eventful time - great to have you back! visit our blog we have an award for you!

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  28. ...missing you! Hope all is okay?
    Give the two pooches a big hug from me...and here's a hug for you too...(((HUG)))

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  29. Welcome Back...we joined the blogging community while you where gone. We, too, are therapy dogs and know how REWARDING along with the 'stress' (used for lack of a better word) that is associated with our visits. We also give our HEARTS and SOULS to perfect strangers to have a moment of peace in their recoveries -- our reward is a SIMPLE SMILE :)!
    Thank you for giving unselfishly and taking the time to HEAL yourself to better your unselfishness.
    WELCOME BACK! We look forward to getting to know you.

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  30. Just found yours during my search for therapy dog blogs. Hope to read more from you soon. We just got started this year and sharing about our visits.

    Terri

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  31. I don't have your email so I hope this reaches you. Just wanted to let you know that we miss you updating your blog and think of you guys often. I bet the pup is all grown and handsome now. Miss you guys! :)

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  32. Just stopping by to wish you a very Merry Christmas!

    Kisses,
    Emma Rose

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  33. Just wanted to stop by and wish you guys a Happy Holiday. Sure do miss hearing from you.

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  34. Stopping in again to just say that I haven't forgotten you guys. I really miss you writing in your blog and hope you're doing okay and well. Much love to you and the pups. I bet Mr. Blue is all grown and just handsome now.

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  35. Hello, hugs & Wink,

    Gypsy x
    http://gypsyju.blogspot.com/

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