At bedtime, I realized our 15-year old dog, Zeus, was missing. Dave and I gathered flashlights and searched the 5 acre property. I walked the blueberry field. I slowly scanned the creek bank. I walked and sobbed. I couldn't believe my old dog would leave us. This wasn't how I wanted to say good-bye to him.
After 90 minutes, my stomach was hurting. I was exhausted and upset. I went to bed, knowing I'd search for Zeus once the sun rose.
I never got the chance.
Thirty minutes later, I started puking. Every fifteen minutes I emptied the remains of my stomach into the toilet and moaned in pain. My stomach was on fire. I thought of the dinner I had eaten and the food poisoning I picked up. I thanked God it was me and none of the children.
Some time in the dead of night, I heard a dog barking. Dave ran down stairs and back up, rejoicing that Zeus had returned. "He must have gotten lost." I vaguely nodded my agreement.
My husband offered me some Pepto Bismol and I cried back, "It's a physical pain." He brought me water and peppermint tea.
Two hours later I realized I was still on the floor, moaning incoherently. I knew something was wrong and woke Dave. "Take me to the hospital."
An hour later I was diagnosed with appendicitis, admitted to the hospital, and calling family to let them know that surgery was imminent. What a shock. One minute enjoying my 9 year old's birthday, the next searching for a dog, and then the next laying in a hospital bed waiting for surgery.
This is one birthday, I will never forget.