April 18 2004

It is Sunday evening. It is really quiet here at the Delmedico house. Sarge, our german shepard, is in the hospital. He had something called a "Fibrocartilaginous Embolism". This a stroke in his spinal column. It happened Thursday afternoon. He was in the back yard with Daisy. They both came back to the door about 5 minutes after being out. This is unusual, I usually have to beg them to come in. Daisy came in first and just stared at Sarge. When I called him, he just sat there. I stepped out on the porch and noticed something was not right. He dragged his back half to the grass and kind of laid down. I called the Vet and they said to bring him in.

I wound up at 3 different Vet offices before they finally took him in. The first, my vet, said "don't even take him out of the van". The second office looked him over and determined they could not be the best of service for him and us to the neurologist. They kept him. They did an MRI on Friday to see if it was a disc problem, no dice. The doctor said he may have some type of recovery, not sure what that means yet. He was pretty sedated Friday and apparently pretty weak that evening and into Saturday.

This morning they said that he is using his left hind leg and has bowel control. We will, hopefully, find out tomorrow if he will be coming home soon. If he comes home he will have a gimp right rear leg. The only thing that we said we could not deal with was "no bladder or bowel control".

I never realized how big a part of our family he is. I know is "Just a dog". But, that dog has a great dogality. He really fills this house with all of his 100 pounds of puppy. Daisy has been just laying around waiting for him to come in the door. Every time I leave and return, she will look behind me for Sarge. It is sad. Ryan is doing ok with it so far. I do not know how he would handle it if Sarge does not come home. I am hoping we do not have to go that route.

Ryan had opening day on Saturday. We have a parade from the municipal building to the little league complex. It was a wonderful day for baseball. Ryan was our starting pitcher. He did great. He threw 51 pitches in 3 innings with only 2 runs scored. He walked the 1st batter in the top of the 4th and threw 2 balls to the 2nd. He said he was done. He did not eat a good breakfast and had no lunch. The lack of water caused cramps in his legs. He got a good solid single while at bat. We finished the game 6 to 2. Our first victory. Our next game is Tomorrow night. We'll keep you posted.

Katherine and Anthony are doing well. Anthony gets his stitches out tomorrow. He will not keep a band-aid on his head to save his life. Every time Ann puts one on he will remove it within 3 minutes. We have gone through a lot of bandages this week. I think he will have a little scar. Probably not the only one at the rate he is going. He fears nothing and will do just about anything he can. Except for Mr Bubbles, I put some in the tub and they both freaked out. Bath was over and out they came. Tears and all from Anthony. Katherine just had a look of horror on her face.

They love being outside. Any chance they get, Katherine will ask to go outside. We have a pretty big back yard for our neighborhood and town. We are on about 3/4 of an acre. Our yard was heavily wooded, we live in a residential area. I guess is was cheaper to just clear the lot where the house was going. Anyway, our yard is fenced to keep other animals out. It also serves as a mini prison for Katherine, Anthony, Daisy and Sarge. We had to put locks on the gates, Sarge figured out how to open the gates. Got lost again, they just like to be outside in the sunshine.

Ryan, Ann, later in the day, Katherine and Anthony did a little gardening in the back. They put down a ton of peat moss and top soil along with planting some vegetation. Not sure what they planted. It's funny to watch Katherine because she does not like to get dirty but can't resist participating in what ever activity is going on.

We spent pretty much the entire weekend outside. The weather here has been wonderful. It is supposed to be in the high 80's on Monday. Not sure how long this will last. Saturday was filled with baseball and Sunday was filled with backyard activities. The 2 of them are fitting in just nice.

We went out for dinner late Sunday afternoon. We were sitting at our table waiting for our meals. The hostess walked by out table several times talking to Katherine and Anthony. About the 3rd time she walked by, she stopped. Katherine was sitting next to me and Anthony was next to Ann across the table. The hostess looked at Katherine and said "She looks so much like her daddy" and turns to Anthony and says "He looks so much like his mommy". The hostess totally ignored the 9 year old biological child, Ryan, sitting at the table with us. Anyway, Ann and I just smiled and said thank you.

I do not have too much else to say for this week. It has been an adventure with Katherine and Anthony this week. Capturing their every move is really tough.

Katherine's speech improves every day. There are new works at every turn. She will point for the name of something. We will tell her what it is and she will try to repeat the word. Her C's, F's, H's, S's, T's, V's X's and Z's are a little hard to pronounce. Her word order is a little jumbled up. This is all normal stuff for a 3 year old just learning English. Now that she is expanding her vocabulary, there are words we do not understand. She try's really hard to get her point across and we just miss it. This has got to be frustrating for her. When we first spent time with Katherine, she was a whisper. Did not say much over a low whisper. Now we have to tell her to use her inside voice, often and regular.

Anthony is just as curios with the "point and name" game. He will point at a bunch of stuff and wait for you to tell him what it is. He will not repeat your words but, is still very curios about all the stuff around him.

Bedtime has really become a treat for me. I will ask Katherine and Anthony if they are ready for bed? They will both say "NO" from time to time. When it is time for bed, Anthony will walk down to his room and Katherine will go potty then come down to her room. Sunday night was pretty typical except for Anthony. Katherine stopped in the bathroom to do her business and last I saw was Anthony outside the bathroom, waiting for Katherine. When I turned around Anthony was gone and Katherine was coming out of the bathroom. I assumed that Anthony had gone into the bathroom. As I walked by, headed to their bedroom, he was not in there. I got a puzzled look on my face. When we went in to the bedroom and I turned on the light, there stood Anthony at his crib with his hands on the vertical bars trying to get in. It was pretty funny. He got his hugs and kisses from his sister and then I picked him up and loved him up and put him in his crib. Not a peep out of him after that. I tucked Katherine in and pulled the door shut behind me. That was it. No fuss no muss. I can't believe how far we have come.

I can remember crying, screaming and carrying on at nap and bedtime. From both of them. Now it is as simple as asking the questions "Are you ready for a nap?" or "It's bedtime, let go guys".

Have a good week!

© Bill Delmedico 2013