I semi-promised you this tale.
And I’ve decided to be strong and share it.
We had Stitch for about a month when life started looking up. We were able to watch an hour long TV show without having to a.) sit on the floor, b.) keep Stitch from biting at us, the couch, or the floor, c.) follow our curious pup into the kitchen, back to the living room, then back to the kitchen again. A real rhythm was starting to form in how the day went, and we were thrilled.
As I shared before, I wasn’t too keen on the idea of sending him away for training. No, let’s be real, I wasn’t too keen on the idea of training–period. Part of me was itching to cancel the training and set up a dog sitter for the days we’d be away on the cruise.
A week before our family cruise, on a Saturday Hubby had dedicated to fixing our gutters, I was left with occupying Stitch’s attention.* I played with him inside, gave him his favorite chew toys, then decided it was time for a nice, long walk.
*A job I most definitely wanted to do over fixing gutters.
We went about the neighborhood in the fashion which had become the regular for us. Me trailing behind him, catching up whenever the wind blew a whiff of something so particularly fascinating he needed to immediately stop and sniff it out.
I’d learned these mannerisms and thought they were okay. It didn’t matter to me that I had to be prepared to stop so he could immerse his nose in the neighbor’s porch or the bush around the corner or the large basket at the crosswalk which once held a potted plant and now is home to cigarette butts.*
*Please note: I did not let him sniff the cigarette butts, only the basket itself which was several inches from the butts.
On moments when he’d get a little too curious, I’d tug him along and start lightly jogging, hoping to get him moving, and ultimately, tired out.
So far, the winter had been pretty mild*, but this day was one of our first cold days. The temperature was teetering around freezing, and though it hadn’t yet bothered me, I decided it was time to head back inside.
*Little did I know the constant negative temperatures December and the beginning of January had in store for us!
I started my ordinary little jog in place, which got him running. In my heeled ankle boots, I followed behind, still only at a jogger’s pace, but slowly picking up. We were a hundred feet from home, across the street from the corner bar, when he abruptly crossed my path in search of a new scent.
Now friends, this had happened before…when we were walking. At a walking pace, I was able to catch myself from being brought down to the ground by this canine who was completely immersed in a world of scents, unaware of the human attached to him.
My ability to keep from tumbling over a dog set on sniffing out the ground to my right rather than staying to my left while jogging was a lot like a car’s ability to keep completely still on black ice despite hitting it at 50 mph.
We’re both going to do a little slipping.
In one swoop, I was on my hands and knees*. Having not fallen in such a manner in over twenty years, as my flesh hit the pavement I knew this was not a delicate, ladylike fall I had just taken.
*At least I’d remembered the art of properly falling from my childhood.
As quickly as I went down, I popped back up because aside from the fact I could feel with every throbbing bit of my knees and palms that I had some serious wounds, I had my dignity at risk. You see, before I fell I’d taken a mental note of the outside of the corner bar. And yes, friends, there were people there.
As in the plural of person.
People with eyes.
People who watched the entire fall from start to finish.
I wanted nothing to do with them.
Stitch, fortunately, had stopped dead in his tracks, stunned. I grabbed his leash, tossed him at Hubby who stood clueless on a ladder at the corner of our house, and ran inside to tend my wounds.
It wasn’t until I was in the house that I realized I was cold. But I needed ice. So now, I was cold and holding an ice pack and ripping off my jeans in order to get to the damage.
Oh, and I couldn’t feel my fingertips.
So, I was cold, couldn’t feel my fingertips, trying to put ice on my palms, my fingertips, and my knees, all while attempting to get out of my ankle boots and jeans.
Of course, it couldn’t have been a pair of jeans I didn’t like, or you know, a pair which already purposefully had holes in them.
Nope. The first thing I saw in the moments before tearing my jeans off was a perfect slit in the knee of this pair of perfectly fine dress jeans. But I didn’t have too much time to focus on this travesty, because then I saw red…and purple…and black.
I grabbed a fistfull of paper towels and attempted to stop the bleeding.
So now, I’m sitting pantless on the floor of my closet, paper towels pressed to both of my knees, an ice pack balanced on one knee being shared between knee, fingertips, and palms.
And that is how Hubby found me.
He helped clean me up a little, but again, my dignity was bruised pretty badly too, so I sent him away. Once I had a make-shift bandage over my bad knee* (the right one took the brunt of the fall), I crawled to the couch and covered myself in blankets, as I was chilled to the bone and unable to warm up due to the need to keep an ice pack on my blackening wounds.**
*Because apparently no one ever has had need for large bandages in our home before.
**It also didn’t help that the heat had decided to not kick in and the temperature had dropped to 62.
And that friends, is the tale of my fall and yes, another fantastic reason for why I will forever be an advocate of professional dog training.