Saturday, August 17, 2013

A Good Ol' Dog

Many years ago, Ryan wanted a black lab and wanted to name him Skillet.  We were in the process of moving to Mississippi.  I am not a huge pet person, but I have always allowed the kids to have pets.  I thought once we got moved, we would find a black lab.  Marc had the cutest golden retriever puppy waiting on us when we arrived.  The black lab sort of got put on the back burner.

Four years later, Nathan got a black lab, and in honor of his brother, named him Skillet.  Nathan trained that dog.  Skillet may be the best trained dog I have ever seen.  Nathan went to Harding and you don't keep black labs in the dorm.  We tried keeping him at another place in Searcy.  It did not work too well, so Skillet came to our home. (We still had the golden retriever and other dogs we had acquired along the way.)

One night, Nicole begged to let Skillet sleep in her room.  I had never allowed the dogs in the house.  I relented under the condition her bedroom door was  shut.  I awoke in the middle of the night and heard the strangest noises.  Not only had Skillet left Nicole's room and come down stairs, he had managed to get into the pantry.  He had a five pound bag of flour.  He had chewed it open and was holding the bag in his mouth and shaking his head.  Flour was every where.  And, I mean everywhere.  It did not clean up too easily.  I still wish I would have taken a picture of that mess.

And then, there was the weekend of Marc's parents 50th wedding anniversary.  We usually did not travel with the pets, but again an exception was made.  Even though it has been almost 10 years, I doubt that my in-laws are laughing yet over the shenanigans of Skillet.  Erica may not be laughing either.  But some of the rest of us can find humor in the situation, 10 years later.

When we moved to Illinois, Skillet was such a baby about the cold weather.  Cocoa, the golden retriever was not.  But Skillet was.

In 2007,  we moved to Honduras.  It was not even debatable.  Skillet would come with us.  He was perfect for this children's home.  He was so gentle with these kids.  And, some of them were not so gentle with him.  Katy rode him. 

Skillet became good friends with Denis, the groundskeeper.  They became like best friends.  Skillet would run off to go be with Denis on his day off.  I would get so mad at that dog.  I always forgave him. 

Skillet started coming to church, and even helped lead the singing. 

I always said Skillet was a good boy for going to church.  But, in reality, he just wanted to be where Denis was.

Then Haley moved to Honduras.  Haley loved Skillet.  She was so gentle with him and would just hug him all the time.  Skillet liked Haley, too.  He would watch tv with Haley.  Or let her use him as her chair while she watched tv.

Nathan got Skillet in 2001, 12 years ago.  Skillet got old on us.  And, he got feeble.  Thursday night when I got home from working in the store, Skillet fell trying to get home.  Yesterday, I knew the end was near.  I sat with him for a long time.  Some of the girls joined me.

I was crying.  Sisi, a true animal lover, was crying, and Katy was crying.  Tears filled Rosy's eyes as she tried to keep the bugs off of Skillet, something he could no longer do.  We tried giving him water and he could not drink.  I told him I loved him.  I told him Nathan loved him.  And one big tear rolled down his face. 

The girls and I sat there with Skillet for a long time.  One by one, the girls left.  Except for Sisi.  She stayed until she had to go in for a shower.  Katy came back before she went in for a shower and said she loved me.  Brayan hugged me before he went in.

Marc carried him to the house. 

Skillet was a good ol' dog.  And I miss him.


1 comment:

Janet Paden said...

So sorry Terri. I feel your pain......