Wednesday, October 28, 2009

New Light on Old Posts

Yesterday I found myself poring through the blog I kept when Paco went through bilateral tplo surgery.

I rarely look at the blog except for when someone has canine surgery questions, and the posts I forward are pretty routine ("Here's how you can make a sling yourself at home...") so I never go back and actually ready anything. But the question posed yesterday forced me to actually search through what I'd written for one small sentence, and I came across this:

"So one of the more unpleasant side effects of the surgery is that Paco now has 'cankles'. His hocks and ankles are so swollen with fluid that there's almost no distinction where one part ends and the other begins. I kinda want to get him some control pantyhose.

"Just look at the shame.

"The only way to relieve the problem is to massage them by by hand frequently in an effort to redistribute the liquid. It feels a little strange to rub the squishy, hairless parts of my dog, but it also feels cool, like petting a Sphynx or Xoloixcuintle [sic].

"Massaging him this morning I remembered that, ironically, when Paco was a puppy, I used to tell people he was an Ixcuintle [sic]. It wasn't a far stretch, since he was missing a great deal of hair due to mange (mostly on his head in an awesome imitation of male pattern baldness). I started the lie one day after a five year old girl recoiled in fear after I informed her she was petting a 'pit bull'. I mean, how can you be scared of a 5 lb puppy, regardless of what it is? But she was.

"From that day forward, for several months, we lived the lie. At the time I figured it was either my puppy's socialization or the truth, since it isn't easy for folks to give pit bulls a break (or even a chance, most of the time).

"Eventually, though, I realized there was no shame in Paco being what he was. He couldn't help it more than I can help being Mexican-Irish. We turned a corner, decided to turn our handicap into our strength, and we haven't looked back (or lied) since."

It's funny how words can bring you back to the time, place, and head space you were at when you wrote it, which in turn catapults you even further back as you were meditating and writing about events even years before that. And then to see yourself clearly in those two previous inceptions, armed with the knowledge you have now... what would they think of the present you? And would they be shocked to know you actually now have an itzcuintle?

In a random turn of events, I had an argument a few months back with a random woman on the BART platform who swore up and down that Xochitl was a pit bull. I just laughed.

2 comments:

danielle said...

I looked at some of your posts on the other blog too - hilarious how you put Paco in the animal control truck. I need to arrange something like that for Bama one of these days - lol

Shanda said...

Come on, tell the truth, Xochitl is really a Chinese Crested x Poodle. She could have a cute "designer" breed name like "Crusty Poo"!