|Image courtesy of Gualberto 107|
Empty boxes are like the police. You never have one when you need it.
I needed a box but I didn’t want one. I knew where to get it though, so off I went to my local Staples; aisle eight, on the left. When I caught sight of the boxes I felt the prickle of tears and I slowed down. But it wasn’t slow enough to keep me from getting there. I had no idea what size I needed so I picked a large because he had a lot of stuff. And I stood there for a while in the aisle just holding the box, wishing I didn’t need it.
My Dog, Rolie, passed away last month and everywhere I look in the house are sweet but painful reminders of him. There are things I know I can’t part with like his bed, his leash, his little red sweater. No. But there are lots of other things I know someone else can use.
Shortly before my Furry Heart passed I made my regular run to PetCo to get dog food. It had become a challenge finding the right brand for his age, weight, and finicky taste. And even then I’d still have to add a little something to it – like homemade liver and rice – to entice His Lordship to eat it. So I’ve still got quite a few cans of food and assorted doggie treats. I’d eat the latter myself if I were trying to keep my teeth strong, my breath fresh, and my coat shiny.
Clearly we took better care of The Mister than we did of ourselves and so he was well-stocked on medication that we can’t return to the vet: senior dog multi-vitamins, Omegaderm, Dasuquin, Thyroxin, Azodyl. Yes. My Rolie was a sick puppy and this stuff wasn’t cheap. If there’s a dog out there with a thyroid condition, bad hips, doggie dementia, and sensitive skin then I’ve got the hook up.
Toward the end, Rolie was more or less peeing at will anywhere and everywhere. He couldn’t help it, so I bought a 50-pack of wee-wee pads. The instructions said to put a pad down in the general area where the dog urinates. He’d smell that and pee there. Right. In classic obstinate form my Cranky Spanny sniffed the pad and peed as far away from it as he could get. Then he looked at me as if to say, “You should have known better, Woman.” And I should have.
I have forty-nine wee-wee pads left.
This is a first for me. My family has had dogs before but Rolie was the first one I’d ever picked out. It was my first time being a Dog Mom. It was the first time a doctor had to look me in the eye and tell me that it was time. It was the first time I had to say a last goodbye.
We’ve decided that we’ll donate as much stuff as we can to Bobbi & The Strays, the rescue organization where we got our Rolie. We’re pretty sure they can use it.
I know this intellectually and yet, there I stood holding an empty box, crying in aisle eight.
I wasn’t sobbing. I didn’t want to draw attention to myself and make the management nervous. I could imagine the chatter over the headsets: “Security: We’ve got a weeper.” But then I remembered: Staples employees are like boxes. You never have one when you need it.
The Urban Erma, the longest running column on StageTimeMagazine.com, was created and written by stand-up comedian Leighann Lord. Listen to the podcast on iTunes and Stitcher Radio. Watch the video edition on YouTube.com. If you enjoy The Urban Erma please leave a comment, Like it on Facebook, follow on Twitter, And share it with your friends. (Share it with people who are not your friends and maybe they will be.) TheUrbanErma@gmail.com Get her free e-books of The Great Spanx Experiment and Sometimes I Wish Facebook Had a Hate Button.