Saturday, September 4, 2010

The Weekend and Sam and Doris

It's Labor Day weekend here in the US and Canada! Labor Day is great for a lot of reasons because there are so many possibilities of things to do on a long weekend! One thing a lot of people use a long weekend for is to finish up summer projects--That's what it is for us--We've FINALLY finished painting our barn and the trim on our house, which by the way I hate to admit was started LAST fall! The weather certainly does have a fall feel to it! We've turned off the air-conditioning and opened up the windows. The dogs really loved being able to be outside in this great weather, especially Charlie who has been out in the yard most of the day.
When we were done painting we sat on the porch for a while, read magazines and relaxed with the dogs. As usual, its been another busy and long week for Carl and I, and we just love to be able to relax and just take it easy.
I did hear from "Sam's sister" Patty this week. She called me on Thursday to tell me that her Mom, Doris was still really missing Sam and wanted her to call me and find out how he was doing. Apparently Doris's transition into her new home is off to a bit of a bumpy start because during her first week she cried quite a bit and hardly left her room. Patty admitted that despite how her Mom was feeling, she'd been putting off calling because she didn't want to bother me. Of course I told her she could and should call anytime, and that I was going to e-mail them that evening, but she had beaten me to it by calling. We had a nice chat and I promised her that I would send her weekly updates for her to pass onto her Mom and when she felt her Mom was strong enough, I would bring Sam to see her. I have to admit that I felt a bit guilty for being out of touch and I was again a bit sad for Doris.

Just before bedtime that night, I'd let Sam out into the yard with the other dogs. He usually doesn't go far. In his old age, Sam has pretty much transformed his walks into a simple process of elimination—a dutiful, head-down trudge. When finished, he walks back to the porch, seemingly oblivious to his surroundings, absorbed in the task of placing foot before foot before foot before foot....But I guess I'd left him out there longer than I should have or he got disoriented because when I went to let him in he wasn't with the others. I realized that he'd wandered into the back part of our fenced yard and into the pitch-darkness. As Sam and I slowly walked back towards the house, I couldn't help but think about he and Doris. The thought occurred to me that Carl and I are merely Sam's caretaker of his physical well being. He appears to be content, he seems happy to see us when we return, eats his meals, and will rub his head on your leg when you talk to him and pet and scratch him. But I know that his heart belongs to Doris, the one he grew old and frail with. How I wish they could be together.


  1. I'm sure it's very hard for Doris to leave her house and former life behind...but to also have to leave a beloved and trusted canine companion...ouch!

    Sounds like Sam is really settling in. What a wonderful thing you are doing by staying in touch with his family.

    Charlie's coat has really grown in this summer. What a cutie! Can't wait to see the "view" from your deck in a month or two. Must be spectacular!



  2. Oh Kim my heart too breaks for Doris and Sam. I know how much I love my dogs and how I would feel if I had to suddenly to be away from them. Doris must be so lonely for her Sam. It is so wonderful of you to care for Sam and to keep in contact with Doris--I know she really appreciates it.
    Have a wonderful relaxing long weekend.

  3. So sad for Sam and Doris, makes me want to cry.

    Nothing going on here, we should be doing some painting too. (a whole year, huh?)

  4. Ohhhh dear. You are so good at writing the heart of the truth, which makes one a bit leaky. Lucky Sam to have you as such a wonderfully understanding "stand-in" for Doris. I'm sure she misses him lots, but I'm glad to hear that Sam rubs his head against you for loves. What a wonderful caretaker you are! I didn't know you had such a beauty of a barn - gorgeous! Have a great weekend!
    Hugs xoxoxo
    Sammie and Mom and the gang

  5. Hi Kim - just stopping by to say thanks so much for visiting my blog and leaving encouraging, funny, supportive comments. I really appreciate them. I feel for Doris and for Sam - I know how I would feel if I had to give up just one of my cats. Animals come such a big presence in our lives, and they are our family. I hope that soon you can take Sam to visit Doris, and that they have a wonderful visit together. Take care, from KY.

  6. Oh, that's a sad thought. Poor Sam and Doris. So hard on both of them. I've been sitting here, staring at the computer, trying to think of something to say. My heart is so heavy for both of them, that I just can't.

  7. Even though Sam and Doris cannot be together, I'm sure it's the first time in their lives both of them need to be taken care of. You are fulfilling that role for Same because Doris' family can't or won't. There is a special place in heaven for Golden Pines. That is for sure. You and Carl will be very, very busy - someday, at the Rainbow Bridge. There are so many faces pressed up against your window.

    Not sure what to think about Produce-gate. Protest with your purse; don't shop at rip-off city. I'm sure Mr. Wegman will welcome you with open arms.

  8. This just breaks my HEART!!!

  9. Hi Kim. I'm so sad for Doris and Sam. You're so wonderful taking very good care of him and keeping in contact with his family.

  10. It just doesn't seem fair to get old and have to leave your home and then to have to give up ones' dog. Hope Doris doesn't get to depressed about her situation. You are so good to keep in touch with her.

  11. Beautiful writing, Kim. I sincerely hope one day you WILL be able to bring Sam to visit Doris, or that Doris' daughter will be able to bring Doris to visit Sam. You are right about Sam's heart being with the lovely lady with whom he grew old, but it is wonderful to know that he appreciates the care you are giving him... that rubbing the head on your legs is that, "thank you" for being kind enough to welcome this "stranger" into your home.

  12. I am sure that they are both missing each other very Much! Your post brought tears to my eyes. Thank you for Caring for Poor Sam.

  13. Your Post brought tears to my eyes. I am Sure that Sam and Doris are missing each other so much. Thank You for Caring for Sam.

  14. I know what you mean about Sam and Doris. I find it so sad that so many homes for the elderly do not let their boarders bring their pets with them. I hope that Doris and Sam will be able to see each other soon.

  15. What a bittersweet post -

    Sam and Doris -
    Doris and Sam -

    Thank Dog fur WOO!

  16. Kim;
    You are doing what is right during a very stressful time for Sam & Doris.
    God Bless you for taking on this act of love & compassion.

    Sheila & Bob

  17. Hi Kim
    I know how you have opened your heart and home to Sam... but we can also feel the heavyness you feel in your heart ,,, knowing how much Sam misses Doris, and how much Doris misses Sam.
    I would feel the same way.... in wishing things could be different.
    Because,,, it really is a heart ache.

  18. Charlies muzzle reminds me of another all white dog. You're right about Sam - a dog gives his heart only once.

  19. Dearest Kim, what a sad position you are in. I am sure as you said that their hearts belong to each other and most likely neither of them will make it very far without the other. I believe they both know that. My heart aches for Doris and for Sam. Many times I think of my pets and what would happen if I sudden became ill and couldn't care for them, would they understand when the time came for us to be separated?
    Your idea to bring Sam to visit Doris is a great one I think, it will give them both a chance to see that the other is ok and feel their connection again. Maybe it will brighten the spark in their lives once more.
    Have a good weekend Kim!
    Tina xo

  20. What we need is a Dog and People Rescue! Where old people and their old dogs can spend their final years. There ya go, Kim ~ your porch is the perfect spot for them to sit outside and enjoy the view... ;-)

    Seriously, it is heartbreaking to think that at the point in their lives where people and their beloved pets could most benefit from each other's love and companionship, they will most likely have to be separated. I want to grow old with my dogs. Like so many others, I just can't imagine my life without my tail-wagging friend by my side.

    Bless you for at least easing the minds of "Sam's People" by giving him a loving place to live out the rest of his days...

  21. Hello Kim !
    Doris and Sam's story is really a heartbreaking one. I can easily imagine how both of them feel, missing each other. Dogs are like humans.
    God bless you for the love you share with your dogs.

  22. what a sad but lovely post Kim, it reminds us all about how vunerable we all will be when we get old.

    Gill in Canada

  23. Awwww Kim, that's so sad. I bet he can't understand where she is either can he. At least he has you and Carl to look after him and give him plenty of love in his old age. Bless you both. Sue x

  24. Oh Kim, so sad to read...
    Hugs to you for all you do!

  25. I love your barn ! Sam sounds so like our old boy at the end of his long happy life. So hard for Doris but lovely of you to reassure her. At least when my mum moved, her elderly collie went to live with my brother so mum can keep in touch & see her. Meg went from country dweller to city slicker !

  26. I hope you will be able to take Sam to visit would be so good for both of them. Thanks for all your sensitivity.

  27. Hi Kim,
    I just found your blog last night but told myself I had to get off the computer and go to bed! In any event, what a wonderful, kind thing you did for both Sam & Doris. My heart breaks for that poor woman and the loss she must be feeling. Thank GOD for people like you who step in to lighten the load for others. You're a complete angel. I love the rest of your blog, too. Please check mine out when you get a chance. Thanks!

  28. Love your barn! Great you got the painting finished. I wish Doris and Sam could be together too, but this situation seems to be the best for now. Love the coffee spoons and the trivia!

  29. How heartbreaking for Sam and Doris. Maybe a visit would help settle Doris in a little better - with some pictures of him and the others in your pretty backyard, maybe?


  30. Woof! Woof! We are sad for Doris. For sure it is very hard for her n misses Sam a lot. I just hope it will not affect her health condition.
    Hope all of you had a wonderful long weekend ... Lots of Golden Woofs, Sugar

  31. I've got some gutters that need cleaning since the two of you have so much energy ;-)

    Hasn't the weather been wonderful this weekend!!

    I can't imagine how hard things are for Doris right now. New home, losing your best friend...

  32. This is happy news for the people that they are going to get the labor day which has long history to get approval of announcing labor day.
    This is your choice what way you want to spend your time.
    But having on holiday could be a good choice of getting refreshed yourself.

  33. Some assisted living facilities have computers & internet connections for their residents. Maybe Doris would feel better about Sam if she read your blog and could follw his doings there?
    - Anne

  34. Hi Kim
    Your post was so touching and sad about Doris & Sam. Is there any chance that Sam would be able to visit her in the nursing home? Or via Skype? Thank goodness the Sams of the world have folks like you to help out in these types of situations.

    Extra licks for Sam from Apples & Neeli.

    Nadine Apples & Neeli

  35. Kim,
    You write such beautiful posts.
    I hope you and Carl have a nice long weekend and I know what you mean about doing the last minute jobs. They seem to never end and I just want to go to the beach.
    My heart really does go out to Doris, and I have wondered also if Sam is thinking about her.

  36. oh, I admit, this made me sob.
    I know you are exactly what Sam needs as far as his needs, but I so agree with you-those old dogs have a way of giving their hearts forever and never really getting them back regardless of the circumstances.