Weekend De-brief

Sometimes, it helps to write things out. Sometimes if I write something on a blog, I can finally stop thinking about it and move on to other, more cheerful things.

So I'm gonna try to write about this. I'm not sure yet if it'll work, as I'm not really in a writing frame of mind, but I'm gonna try anyway, because architorture school doesn't give you time to stay in a funk.

On Saturday morning I took the dogs for a walk in the woods. My two dogs, Abu and Puja, and Astasia's family's dog, Forest. It was a beautiful morning and a pleasant walk. We walked along the river bank and everyone was behaving themselves, and I was feeling upbeat and happy. I gave Forest a stick, and he excitedly ran through the woods with it. As I was watching him run, he yelped suddenly and limped back to the trail.

I assumed he'd landed funny on his paw, or tripped, and that he'd just need a couple minutes to favor it and then he'd be fine. He is old, and sometimes he hurts himself a little but recovers. When I arrived to check his paw however, I saw that it was bleeding. Profusely.

As I have done in the past when Puja sprung a leak, I grabbed some large leaves and tried to apply pressure until the bleeding stopped. For a minor wound, this would have worked. Instead, blood continued to flow. Blood was all over my hands. It was dripping off of them. I tried to wipe them off on the grass, but there was little grass and it was no longer wet with dew. I took off my sweater and then my tank top, then replaced my sweater. I wrapped my tank top around his paw as tightly as I could, to no avail. It was soaked with blood and continued to drip within minutes.

Holding the fabric to his paw, I somehow managed to get my phone and one-handedly dialed Astasia's sister, asking her to come with first aid supplies. I pulled the string out of my hood and used it to tie the tank top around his paw, then demanded he lay down so we could wait.

When the first aid supplies arrived, I tried to dress him. I would no sooner get him wrapped up than the dressing was soaked through. I wrapped him again, and again it was soaked through. I decided that the only thing to do was get him out of the woods as quickly as possible, and hoped he could limp his way out, but this only exacerbated the bleeding.

With no options left, I lifted him on my shoulders to carry him out. It wasn't long before his 70-ish pounds had me ready to collapse. Astasia's sister helped me by propping up his front end. Together we marched as quickly as we could, with Forest dripping blood all the way to the road. It was probably between a quarter and half mile.

In the end, we got him to a vet, and he is now bandaged and miserable with a plastic cone around his head, but he will be fine.

I, on the other hand, am getting frequent flashes of bright red dripping blood. I can see it pooling in my tank top, black drops of it on the grass, smeared and dark all over my hands, and finally, pale and diluted as it runs into the drain at the vet's bathroom. I am not a queasy person, I don't get ill at the sight of blood, but the memory of having so much of it on me, being scared for Forest, not knowing how I was gonna get him safe. Being alone and helpless, being angry with Abu and Puja for being playful and impatient.....

People go through worse trauma. I feel guilty for being as affected as I am by this. As though dog blood is somehow less scary than people blood. I feel sometimes that bad luck follows me, that freak accidents always happen when I'm around. My rational mind knows that I don't cause these things to happen. Still. My feelings are all over the place. I'm cranky and my muscles hurt and every time I think I've put it behind me I see blood.

So that was my weekend. How was yours?

1 comment:

  1. I love you.

    You saved his life.

    Thank you.