Saturday, October 27, 2012

Ambassador or Mascot?

Spending more time at my vets' offices, I have become more comfortable with the surroundings.  I have taken it upon myself to make sure all are comfortable and entertained.

Last week I was a bit unsure when a 10 month old Tiber wolf arrived.  This was new to me, so I didn't know if I should provide security or dance.  Opting for the safe route, I tried to protect everyone and then hid behind Daddy.  It was a very unusual night.

This week was more normal.  As people and their furry friends walked in, I greeted them and did a dance.  They loved it!  After that responsibility, I walked from room to room up and down the hallways and made sure everything was as it should be.  If any exam room doors were open, I popped my head in to say, "Hi, I'm Rudy."  A Kitten was in one of those rooms.  She was being examined by my Vet.  When the doctor saw me she said, "Hi Rudy, how are you?"  Then she told me she had to close the door for a little while.  I headed up to the front lobby to entertain the receptionist.  She laughs and thinks I'm cute.

At my special vet, I ran into two white poodles my size.  Of course I gave them my smooth "Rudy" greeting and started dancing.  To my shock and amazement, they started following my lead!  People laughed and got a kick out of it.  I am still the star, the two white ones are my back up dancers.  We're not far from bow ties and tutus now!  Next we'll hit the big stage!

Super Star Rudy, Ambassador to the Vets

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Kidney Walk and Meeting a Little Girl

Misty conditions couldn't dampen the spirits of 2,500 participants at the 2012 NKF Kidney Walk.  Mommy and Daddy met many new friends and saw their old friend TC the Bear.

Many puppies donning their cutest costumes escorted the people along the hilly course.  Mommy and Daddy made it the whole way on the long course!  I stayed home and watched Boomer!  We are better at sprints and will have to train for endurance later.

Last week my numbers were out of whack.  We are modifying my medicine and continuing my fluid therapy.  After a treatment, Daddy and I shopped at PetSmart.  I met a tiny girl who was just learning to walk.  If I stood on my back legs, we were the same height.  Her daddy pointed at me and said, "That is the kind of puppy I want."  Hearing that I of course started dancing my finest dance.  They laughed and the little girl began to copy me.  She was pretty good, too.  When I hopped up and down, she did the same.  We were a great team.

I am going to ask Daddy to make a marquee that says Performances Starring Rudy.  Every Monday, Wednesday and Saturday.  I will hang it in front of the Vet's office.  I dance every time I am there, so I might as well let the public know.  I enjoy entertaining.

Rudy the Excellent Representative of the Poodle Population

Monday, October 1, 2012

Guest Blog by Mommy

I took some time off to show friends my new haircut.  Gertie and Hobey Baker loved it.  The weather has been beautiful, so we are enjoying it while we can.

I asked Mommy to do a guest blog for me.  She is a writer too.  She had a bad cold, but she is feeling better now.  I will be back next time to tell you all about about our kidney walk next Saturday.

Love to you all,
Rudy the Vacationing Poodle

Challenges are Blessings in Disguise

I firmly believe that everything happens for a reason.  Sometimes that reason isn’t clear, but ultimately it will reveal itself.  It may take years and that is how we learn patience.

To fully illustrate my belief, I thought I should share a brief summary of my life.

At the age of nine, I was diagnosed with Type I diabetes.  At 19, I lost my sight because of the disease.

In 1993, at the age of 39, I was diagnosed with end stage renal failure resulting in my first kidney transplant in 1995.  A pancreas transplant in 2003 finally cured the disease that ravaged my body.

After several years, another kidney transplant was necessary, so in 2009, my husband Wayne donated one of his kidneys to me and saved my life.

One might say I have experienced a few challenges.  Along with these medical situations come the emotional, physical, and mental aspects that naturally accompany challenges.

I chose to look at these challenges as blessings.  If it weren’t for them, I wouldn’t be who I am today.  These challenges were more speed bumps in my life.  They may have slowed me down from time to time or turned my path in a different direction, but they never stopped me.

Getting diabetes at an early age taught me about my inner strength and ability to take care of myself.  Learning these facts would be invaluable as I went on in life.

Losing my sight ended up being my best blessing of all.  It led to so many wonderful experiences that would not have happened if I were sighted.

I’ll admit when I lost my sight it was a shock, at what I thought to be the prime of my life.  This blow happened suddenly and I was not prepared.  After taking a few months to regroup and adjust to my new circumstances, I decided to continue my academic career.

At the time, my parents were consulting with a counselor working with the services for the blind.  It was his advice to go to a blind school several states away.  That was something I had no interest in pursuing.  I wanted to return to the University where I started my collegiate endeavors.  I felt I needed some familiar references, only now I would be experiencing them from the blind perspective.  My parents were apprehensive about my decision.  The counselor told them to go ahead with my plan.  He was sure I would fail, leaving no other choice then to send me to the blind school.  Call it motivation or a challenge, but I accepted it.  Four years later I graduated Magna Cum Laude.

The greatest blessing in my life also happened when I returned to the school I chose to continue my education.  Before losing my sight, I drove to college.  This was no longer an option, so I would need a ride.  My first day back I met a taxi driver with a warm heart and an excellent sense of humor.  That was September 13th, 1984 and we are still laughing!  That marvelous man is now my husband.  We only lived 6 blocks apart.  I walked by his family’s home every day to elementary school.  We never met until the day he drove me to campus.  A ride I wouldn’t have needed if I had my sight.  Everything happens for a reason.

Complications with my pancreas transplant caused me to lose my position at work.  At the time, I thought this was a mixed blessing.  I was deeply saddened by the loss of my job; it was one I enjoyed very much but it also gave me more time for recovery, which ended up being a long road, as I was twenty pounds under weight and extremely weak.  During this process, I was able to enjoy the pleasure of my dogs and observe their unique personalities.  The creative part of me emerged and I started writing stories about them.  My creative aspirations were something I had pushed into the recesses of my mind and heart.  I was an artist before losing my sight and thought that was gone.  While writing, I realized I was using the images in my mind.  These stories turned into a children’s book series called Rudy’s Little World.

After publishing my first book and presenting to groups of all ages, I finally discovered what I believe is my true calling.

Remember the degree I mentioned at the beginning of this piece?  It was a B.S. in Speech Communication.  I switched to that major because I liked the professors; they were very accepting.  Although it took twenty years, I now know the real reason for choosing that path.  Everything happens for a reason.

Embrace the challenges you encounter and don’t let them stop you.  They will make you stronger and lead you in the right direction.