Thursday, July 06, 2006

Sweet Melissa

There is a bittersweet joy in this passage--inevitable and unwelcome as it is, as they all have been--that conjures those moments, those precious moments that otherwise have settled themselves quietly, unobtrusively in the back of the brain, in that primordial soup that is memory; 'til now almost forgotten images, sounds, smells, touches that were, are the twelve years and ten months of her life.

Sweet Melissa.

We've understood that our Alaskan Malamute, Melissa Marie (Adaka's Autumn Amber II), has, for about the past year, begun the painful path to the eventual debilitating effects of osteoarthritis. Her left front leg and her right rear leg, as well as her hips, are the main culprits. Her spirit, her independence, her...majesty remain her strengths; the essence of who Sweet Melissa is and has been for all these short, short years.

Ah, today, at least for today, nothing really matters: not Iraq or North Korea or Dubya or Rove. No, not for today. What matters today and for, perhaps, the next few weeks or, God willing, the next month or two months; what matters is Sweet Melissa.

When Melissa stopped running with me because of the beginnings of a limp, we--David and I--began a modest aspirin therapy to ease what clearly was the development of osteoarthritis. That was over a year ago. Now, we've lived the history of ever increasing dosages of aspirin, the ineffectual results of Rimadyl, the worthlessness of the latest, greatest liquid "wonder," Metacam. And, now, we've gone back to aspirin: 1,000 mg. a day, that seems to be easing the pain somewhat which, incidentally, is more than the "wonder" drugs have ever been able to do.

So, if my posts to this site are seldom or maudlin or, indeed, boring, so be it. Sweet Melissa, David and I are struggling through another passage, another transition, another...grief.

Bear with us as those precious moments, those memories come as a flood tide. This, then, begins Sweet Melissa's story.

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