Monday, October 29, 2012

Thinking of Strelka

Microsoft Office Excel 2007 QuickSteps  by John Cronan
Weight: 1.3 lb
Method of Disposal: Recycling the Remains

It has been a little over 24 hours since Strelka started her trial period.  I left her last night with a wonderful, sweet, thoughtful woman who had clearly been doing her research.  I did not say an emotional goodbye, partly because I was sick and partially because it is a trial.  The woman is not sure if she is ready for a baby (as opposed to an adult), but she wanted to give it a shot since she had already fallen in love with Strelka.  Part of me thinks she will give her back to me because of this, and the other part of me cannot imagine that she could live with that little girl without falling in love.  If she decides to keep her, I might just need to see her one last time.  I have been thinking about her all day.

In a different time, in a different place, she would be mine.  I am smitten with her silliness.  Her langley, clumsy legs.  The way she rests her head on my chest and stares at me while I read.  The way she gets so excited to see someone and then acts as if she is startled by her own enthusiasm and playfully backs off.  She is such a flirt.  I really hope it works out with this woman, because I cannot give this girl the life she deserves.  Oh how I wish I could.  If not, we will keep searching until we find the perfect home.

Strelka did not destroy books, except for this insignificant one.  I think Leda gave her the idea.  This was one that had a little chewing around the edges.  She was being trained by the last foster, the book-eating adorable little beagle mix, who is having the time of her life by the way. 

Sunday, October 28, 2012

RIP Brillo Bill

A Ring of Endless Light by Madeleine L’Engle
Weight: 8 oz
Method of Disposal: Leaving Somewhere

I bought this book in 2002 because I was dating a girl who loved L’Engle and highly recommended this book.  I am not going to talk about this book here, though I am sure I will talk about L’Engle in this blog in the future.  She was required reading when I was young, and no one my age can forget A Wrinkle in Time.
I chose this book today because of the picture on the cover, a dolphin leaping over a young girl’s arms.   

Today, Brillo Bill the Beta Fish died.  Brillo Bill went by the name Sponge Bob when cared for by Harriet and Connor, my friends who recently moved back to England.  I took Brillo Bill in when they left.  I changed his name mostly to aggravate Harriet and also to prove my disdain for the cartoon character.  He was a beautiful, red fish who would build bubble nests and glide through the water looking very handsome no matter what he was doing.  He was very easy to care for, though I hated cleaning out his tank.  It was always so obviously traumatizing for him to be scooped up from his home and then replaced once it was clean.  He would, as fish do, try every route possible to flee me.  It made me feel so guilty but, when we were not cleaning, life together was easy-breezy.  We coexisted peacefully.  He was in a nice quiet place where the dogs did not notice him.  I don’t know what a fish thinks or feels, but I hope he had a good, secure life.  I appreciated the beauty he brought to mine.

It is not every day you get to adopt a fish.  I will not buy one so this may be the last one for me.  Good Bye, Brillo Bill.  Thank you for sharing your life with me.

After Silence

After Silence: Rape and My Journey Back  by Nancy Venable Raine
Weight: 8 oz
Method of Disposal: Leaving on the book rack at Joe’s in East Atlanta

This may not be the best time to write about this book.  I have been battling a minor sickness the last couple days, and I am exhausted.  BUT my foster puppy, Strelka-Lelka, just went into a weeklong trial period with a very nice woman.  I am having trouble resting, as I keep wondering how it is going and feeling strange that Strelka is not nearby.  I have not written on this blog for awhile because I have been trying to keep up with my other three!  One for a shelter dog named Evan who was adopted this week, one for Strelka and Belka, and one for another shelter dog that is currently in training.  It is time that I get back to my project.

Needless to say, this book was powerful for me.  The author was raped by a stranger in her own home and there is so much of her experience that I do not share but, surprisingly, there are a lot of common threads with my own story.  It felt empowering (?) to hear someone else giving voice to some of my concerns.  First, that even years later you still feel the effects and that your life is irrevocably changed.  She talks about her self as dying at the age of 35 and another woman taking over.  I think about that a lot.  I wonder what life would have been like and remember the woman I was and how changed I am.  She also talks about comments people made to her that felt more huge to her than they were probably intended by the speakers.  I am always trying to think about how to juggle other people’s suggestions, jokes, thoughts, with how I actually feel and how I react.  I also appreciate that she discusses how expensive the rape was for her, while recognizing that the rapist does not have to foot those bills.  I remember first seeing my hospital bill.  I was infuriated.  I was lucky enough to have a good support system.  I do not know how one could afford to be raped if they were not working or were making minimum wage and had no one to help them when things got tough.  

I felt like I was in a healthy place by the time I read this book this week.  I am glad I did not read it right away.  I bought it months after my own rape, looking for answers.  I think it would have been too triggering then or even just six months ago, but this week, I felt like there was someone out there I could relate to and that would not judge all the things that come up that I sometimes judge about myself.