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by Mary Alice Bowles
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Our Special Baby

We bought Apples at the local pet store way back there in 97 to be a companion to our granddaughter Tinisha who was about 5 years old at the time. Tinisha and Apples grew up together and they made mamaw and papaw’s world twirl with excitement. There was never a dull moment with those two in our life.

Now here in early January, 2011, we sat in that vets office with a very weak Apples just taking in the scenery with those brown eyes darting everywhere, she is sitting in her mommy’s lap securely wrapped in her blue blanket that her mommy made in high school.

Apples hates this place, she has hated it ever since she was a tiny baby.

The diagnosis is in, besides Apples losing the control of her back legs and could not even walk anymore, she had the highest blood count that had ever been read in the St. Claire’s Veterinary Clinic in Scottsburg, Indiana for Cushing’s disease and over five hundred dollars later, after IV’s and a ton of pills, we had her back home and comfortable.

My Little Apples
May 10, 1997 to January 21, 2011

Five in the morning, Monday, January 17, 2011

My husband, Papaw George made the decision that he was not going to have our precious Apples put to sleep that she would take her last breath in the comfort of her own home, but it is the Mamaw who is losing her mind…Oh Lord Help me.

I am sitting here listening to my dog breathe short fast breaths. I wish I could breathe for her, and I wish I could share my legs with her. I have been up since four this early am because I cannot sleep for I know if I stay awake, then if she quits breathing, I will shake her and make her breathe! As you can see I have lost my mind and I have to get it back, although I don’t really need it right now.

Since I have lost my mind, then I am convinced that I can beat death out of this room with a broom stick or maybe an old mop handle. I wonder if I can sling him up against the wall, or choke him to death with my bare hands. Oh Lord please help me, I hate death with a passion of pure hate. I cannot let my Apples go, death cannot have her. I refuse to let him in, because you see I have watched him take people all my life and he cannot have my Apples.

Death entered and laid hold of my family when I was only three, he took my dad and left me fatherless and ever since then, my pea brain has been trying to find out how to beat death.

Oh Lord, I beg you, please let me keep Apples. I promised her come spring, she could help me plant flowers and I promised her we would go in the back yard and she could eat all that green stuff that she likes so much and I do not know what it is, but she hunts all over the yard until she finds it and she eats and eats.
After we get the flowers planted, I think we will take a quick drive through Mc Donald’s and let her smell and smell, then when we get to the window, the girls will tell me how pretty she is, and then she will hold that neck back and growl like a panther, I guess you would have to be there to really enjoy that. LOL

She is actually a lamb in a Daschunds clothing.
She loves children with the love a mother has for her tiny infant. She was raised with all the grandchildren and she became one of them. I don’t know which number of grandchild she is, but she is less trouble and as much fun as they are and I hope that the grandchildren don’t read this..

A dog’s life is too short no matter if they live to be a hundred, because they’re our best friends in the whole world and they love more than anything and all they ask of us is food and water and love in return.

When I leave the room to get a drink of water, I am not gone one minute until she wants me back in the room. She breathes easier when a hand is rubbing her tiny black head and she hates being alone. Even in a semi-state of death, if we left the room she knew and would make a little sound of desperation and one of us would have to return.

January 18, 2011

Her mommy, Tinisha, dragged her mattress off the bed and into the living room floor so she could set with her tonight so Mamaw could get some sleep. When they were both real little, Tinisha dragged her mattress off into the floor a many of a night so Apples could sleep with her, because after Apples first back problem, she was not allowed to be on the beds or on the couch without someone right beside her, so in order for mommy Tinisha and Apples to be able to sleep together, off the bed that mattress came. Tinisha is the best mommy in the whole world

January 19:

Apples gets weaker every day and I know that without a miracle from God, she is a goner. I watch the brightness leave her eyes a little bit at a time and it is the most misery ever.
I found a little wagon and we put her in it and pulled her around, because she could hardly move anything on her body but her head and front paws. And then in the mornings, Tinisha and I would put her in a blanket and carry her to Papaw, so they could have their morning cheerios together. She would always sit on the floor and have cereal with him every morning, as long as I can remember and why should things change now?

The day came when she could not eat or drink anymore, So Tinisha got a spoon and cup and spoon-fed her water up until the last minute…She laid there not able to move anything at all and Tinisha would put the spoon to her lips and she would stick that tongue out and slurp.

I made chicken n’ dumplings and Tinisha and Papaw put the gravy in a spoon and let her slump it, and oh Lord have mercy, how I needed to break out crying and run into the street and get in my car and run away, until it was all over! What really saved me was the snow. It was so deep that I could not leave, my thunderbird was buried underneath a winter blizzard.

We watched over her day after day and took care of her like a baby and her Aunt Tammie would come in the evenings and talk to her and help us with her. She was like an answer to a prayer when she came flying through the door, hollering , “how are you today, Sissie”?

The family was her hospice and she was our patient. We adored her and she adored us and how could we let her go without a fight, so fight we did.

January 20, 2011

Every day, I would sit there in that chair and wait for her to take her last breath and then one night in the middle of the night, I totally got down on my hands and knees with my face to the floor asking God, “God would you please take her, Lord please take her”! Then all I heard in the middle of that night was total silence! And to beat it all, when Apples saw me with my face to the floor and praying, she stopped breathing really hard and kind of looked at her mamaw with a worried face as if to say, “Is something wrong mamaw”?

Finally later on in the next day , I found some kind of special peace by an answer I never expected. I was praying very softly in the Holy Ghost and it sounded so familiar to my spirit and I said Lord Help me, what is this? Then suddenly it came in English and I felt like I had sprouted wings. Here is what it was and I felt the presence of an Almighty God.

Psalm 23:

The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want.
He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.
He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name's sake.
Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.
5Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.
6Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the LORD for ever.

And oh, how I thanked God for his

She would lay there all day long in the computer room and me right in a chair above her, watching every move she made and I knew what she was waiting for, just as soon as the front door opened and she heard her Tinisha’s voice and she was home from college for the day, a totally new fight was on, to live and fight she did.

O how I wish I could find the fountain of youth so I could let Apples take a big slurp from her teaspoon.

Her love for us made her live a lot longer than normal and we just cried and prayed a little harder that God would spare her life, but His will is not our will .

January 21 2011:

It was early evening and Apples was laying there with her eyes closed laboring for her next breath. Tinisha and I were so tired, that it is actually unexplainable! We decided to sneak from the room and get a quick bite to eat. We never ate around her after she got to the point where she could not eat. We did not want her to smell food and not be able to raise her head. Food was one of her passions!

We had not been gone over 10 minutes and we heard Papaw scream, “Girls come here”. We went running to her side and we knew this was it… We both knelt down beside her and told her how much we loved her and we would meet her over there on the other side and we ask Jesus to watch over her for us…
Papaw watched silently as tears fell from his face.
Then, she just fell into the peaceful sleep of Jesus!
She took our love and moved into her eternity.

Rest in peace my Baby Love!

What pain, what terrible pain, my heart is broken into shreds and it will take a long time for it to mend..

I sleep, I hear her bark. I eat a cheeseburger, I save Apples a bite. When I see the snow, I see poor Apples dressed in those long sweaters that her mommy dressed her in so that they could go play in the snow, and when she was little, all those baby doll dresses she had to wear. . I just have to smile when I think about our life together.

And the memories go on and on and on....

Tinisha about 10 years old and Apples about 4:
We always have baby rabbits in the back yard and Apples so enjoyed chasing them around, and it was like a line-up for the big race! Apples chasing the baby rabbits and Tinisha right on Apples tail to save the baby rabbit and I thank God that Apples never caught one…LOL

Apples was seven years old:

In the middle of the night like 2 am in the morning , a worried family is headed toward Seymour, Indiana with a little black dog wrapped in a blanket and she seems to be in terrible pain and she woke up in that shape in the middle of the night. We all climbed out of bed and papaw gets on the phone and finally talked some poor vet into coming into the office and taking care of her…What a vet He was! We find out that she is having her first bout with her spine, and he gave her some shots and let us bring her home.
We had to be careful from then on, no more jumping or running fast and we became so over protective of her…

My memories are too overwhelming and I must shut down my mind and rest awhile.

My world is alive with tear drops and memories and they mingle and merge toward my hereafter where I hope I will find my Apples sitting inside my mansion door and she will say, “Welcome Home My Mamaw, I have been waiting for you.”

Mary Alice Bowles

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