She’s had a rough life. I’ve made up her early life because I don’t know the actuality of it. I’m convinced she was loved at one time, a squishy older lady who patiently leash trained her and encouraged her to snuggle and give kisses. A compassionate lady who didn’t mind Lizzie’s heart murmur in the least.
I imagine she made her pup a big fluffy warm bed in her crate.
I imagine her original owner was named Mildred or Ethel, maybe she was named Rose or Eva May (like the matriarch of our church house) and that she loved my Lizzie. But as it is bound to do, time marched on and Lizzie’s first owner succumbed to the thief we know as death and Lizzie was forced to go somewhere else.
I imagine Lizzie looked for her beloved owner after death took her away and I imagine Lizzie was sad and maybe she was scared. That makes me sad to think about so I don’t dwell on it too much.
I reckon Lizzie had some really difficult days then, I don’t know if dogs pray, but if they do I suppose she prayed a lot then. She found herself somewhere she wasn’t wanted; she had her tongue cut out, by what means I am unsure, but I can’t dwell on that too long either. She lived among locusts and that was most certainly not living. Her heart murmur worsened, she longed for death to end her daily suffering, maybe she prayed for that. I don’t know.
One day Lizzie was taken to a vet where her wish fulfillment would await at the hands of a “man who threw them money and the dog.”
But a sympathetic veterinarian saw something in her cataract filled eyes that contradicted the requested euthanasia. So that wise vet took the money and the dog from the insistent person and in an instant, that decision would change a life… or two.
Lizzie was given the once over and she was found in decent health, all things considered. She was old and had the myriad of health issues mentioned, but she was spry and a docile little doxie. Lizzie made her way to me by way of my Mama. I was supposed to “foster” Lizzie, but history should’ve dictated to my mama that when I foster I’m very permanence-minded. Lizzie became Lizzie Lessenberry Martin and she is my dog.
Now she tells me with her actions how grateful she is that she has found a new life. We laugh sometimes and say Lizzie thinks that Heaven is pretty alright, but it’s a lot louder than she thought it’d be when she prayed for it so long ago. We have also determined she thinks the angels are more clothed than art depicts, although they are still chubby.
Nowadays she is spry as she once was. She enjoys sitting by the window and snuggling with her new mama, and although she can’t kiss anymore she does try. She is resilient, and even the hard-headed rarely in agreement Martins agree on that.
Several weeks ago she had a toe issue, she adapted and would walk on 3 legs but I watched her over time begin to decline. I bandaged her foot and took her to the vet but she worsened. I could feel her heart murmur become worse, and I knew it was the stress of her bad foot. I began to pray myself. I asked the King to heal her foot. I don’t rightly know if He is in the vet business too, but I do know His word says he saves Man and Beast (Psalm 36:6) so I figured it wouldn’t hurt to ask.
Remarkably, resilience reigned and she began to improve some, eventually making a full recovery, adding no toenail to her list of maladies. She is walking on all fours and her appetite has picked up and she’s back to being a lap dog again. One cool December morning as we took in an episode of Perry Mason (we like the overly dramatic music and Della Street – or maybe her first Mama enjoyed it also and it strikes a familiar chord with Lizzie.) As we were watching, well I was watching the TV, she was looking out the window. I thought how carefree she looked. How content and blissfully happy that she’s found life after living a life wishing for death, and I was overcome with gratitude for the One who is Life and has the power to replenish what the Locusts have stolen (Joel 2:25) and give hope to the hopeless.
“Then I will make up to you for the years that the swarming locust has eaten, the creeping locust, the stripping locust and the gnawing locust, My great army which I sent among you. You will have plenty to eat and be satisfied and praise the name of the Lord your God, Who has dealt wondrously with you; then My people will never be put to shame. Thus you will know that I am in the midst of Israel, And that I am the Lord your God, And there is no other; And My people will never be put to shame.” Joel 2:25-27