Chapter 24 - Dancing Beyond Cancer - Andora's Afterthoughts

Chapter 24 -------- Andora’s Afterthoughts

It is hard to believe that it has been four years since Danielle passed. It has been the most exciting time of my life since that endeavor. I don’t know how I would have managed had the support not appeared. Although the support didn’t always come in ways that I expected, I could have never expected the largest form of support to arrive in a little 6-pound bundle of love. Andora, Danielle’s little white Pomeranian, would leave her most significant mark on me, and now I’m honored to share some of those experiences.

The amount of joy and happiness that Andora brought into my life was invaluable. I couldn’t have managed the grief and anger successfully without her. The companionship was great, but it was her constant happiness that kept me happy too. It was practically impossible to be sad around such a cute and loveable dog. She always knew how to cheer me up. Andora was indeed a gifted therapy dog.

It would be Andora that would finish the grand chapter of my life in writing my book only four days after my first book release party. It was just shy of a 4-year journey to complete the book, which was an honestly monumental task in itself. The voyage, riddled with small and big challenges, also happened with supernatural coincidences. However, in a final act of Sedona Synchronicity, the unbelievable and unthinkable occurred.

My book release party was the day before Valentine’s Day, Feb ‘20. I felt the date was another synchronicity as my story was a love story although not like any most people expect. I was so happy to share the book with the community as I had spent so many years working on it. Finally, the completion of a considerable part of my life was coming to a close. I could see that as those doors closed, many new doors were beginning to open.

I was heading into my first weekend back at Art Shows after taking the winter off to finish my book. Andora would always come to all my shows with me. It was a pleasure and joy to have her sitting in her chair, smiling at everyone. She was incredible at luring people to the booth for attention, as she never seemed to get enough attention. I anticipate that she did a rather good job of increasing my sales by doing that. However, Andora truly loved being at the Art Shows with me, and I would make sure to spoil her for her successes.

I would set up her double chair princess throne with her purple princess pillow on one side and a comfy blanket on the other. During the hot months, she would even get ice packs under the blankets. I will admit that Andora was indeed a spoiled dog. However, she was always such a perfect angel, so I felt she earned it. She was so perfect that she would cheer up anyone who came to visit, and she had many friends at the art show who would come visit her. Andora loved every minute of it.

Personally, I was so excited to be able to display and share my book at the shows, finally. Mostly I was excited to share copies with my family of vendors. They had likely heard the most about my progress over the previous three years. That group alone probably purchased or traded me for more books than I sold at my book release party. It also ended up being one of the best weekends I’ve had as an orgonite art Vendor. That was until Sunday night as I was packing up the show to go home.

As I was packing up my car in the middle of the parking lot, Andora started to have an allergy attack. Many of the trees were pollinating, and she tends to have some respiratory issues when there is poor air quality. Fire smoke is the most irritating to her sensitive little Pomeranian throat. I had spent one evening a year earlier with her coughing the whole night because of local fires. Usually, Andora would have a cough or two during allergy season, but this evening would be different.

Andora went into a cough attack without any of her prescription medicines available. I had some CBD and throat herbs I was giving her all day, but it didn’t seem to handle this most recent attack. I didn’t have the Benadryl or the Oxy-Something the doctor gave us. It was practically the worst time for me to have this occur as I could have run to the store to grab the Benadryl if I wasn’t in a rush to pack up and move my car. By the time I finished, I quickly hopped in the car for a quick eight-minute ride home, but we would have the cough continue most of the way. I started to have a real moment with her in the car.

I wanted to help her, but I felt so bad that I couldn’t get it under control. I cried out for help and practically started crying. We thankfully made it home as my anxiety was through the roof. I hadn’t had a moment like that in quite some time, and it was mostly due to Andora’s calm demeanor. Now that she wasn’t calm and happy, it was throwing me off my game. Thankfully it would all change quickly after we made it to my room.

I quickly pulled out the medication from under the sink and began dosing her with the Benadryl first. By the time I gave her the 3rd dose, she was already showing signs of the cough stopping. I gave her a dose of the OXY medicine the doctor gave her for this specific instance. Thankfully, after 20 minutes, everything was back to normal. I was so relieved, and we set in for the night.

The next morning I gave Andora her supplements and some Benadryl when we woke up. We had to go on an errand that morning, and I figured she would be okay for the journey. Andora went everywhere with me, and I would never leave her at home. Otherwise, I would potentially face her wrath, something I never did after she got Danielle and me. A story I didn’t get into much detail previously in the story.

It just so happened that when Danielle and I first got together, it made Andora very jealous. Apparently, Andora wasn’t pleased with me at the time since we were not paying enough attention to her. The first outburst came with her taking a poo on my side of the bed. After rubbing her face in it, I put her in time out. She seemed to have gotten the message because the next thing she did was pee on my side of the bed and poo’d next to my side of the bed. Again she had her face rubbed in the pee, and yet again was put in time out. What happened next blew me away.

The following days we noticed that Andora started bleeding out of her little bottom. These incidents sent Danielle into a big concern as it worsened. We immediately scheduled an appointment with the VET. After a short time with Andora, the VET told us that they couldn’t seem to find a problem. They explained to us that it appeared to be PSYCHOLOGICAL! I couldn’t believe it, and neither could Danielle. So we went home to figure out our next step.

We sat Andora down in her chair and proceeded to have a conversation with her. We explained that we were sorry that she felt ignored. We would make sure to give her much more attention, and that is exactly what we did. I was surprised to find the issues we were having with Andora disappeared immediately. Which eventually built the strong relationship that Andora and I carried through the process of losing Danielle.

Since Danielle’s passing, Andora went everywhere with me. I always made sure to bring her usual needs in my bag, including the Benedryl this time. However, in this adventure, Andora would have another cough attack at the worst possible time. It would be about 20 minutes for me to get home to her OXY medicine. That always seemed to work no matter what, but I just didn’t think that we would need it that morning. Plus, it was red liquid and would always get everywhere, so I just didn’t think to bring it on a quick journey.

I got home that morning and gave her a few doses of the medication, which again helped immediately. That afternoon she ended up napping, and we went for our usual sunset walk after she woke up. The next 24 hours went smoothly. I was preparing for Ecstatic Dance that Tuesday and was super excited to do some dancing that day.

A romantic interest of mine was also going to be attending that evening. We had only met a week prior, but things were going well, inspiring me to make an extra special playlist. After our morning walk, I ended up giving Andora a couple of additional doses of Benadryl as she coughed several times on the hike. Nothing terrible but I just didn’t want to let her keep aggravating her sensitive throat. After my shower, I realized that I might have given her too much medicine.

The best way to explain it was that she almost appeared drunk. I felt terrible about over-medicating her, so I kept checking on her constantly. She seemed fine as she was still giving kisses and smiling ear to ear. Like I said, the best way to explain it was she appeared drunk. I wasn’t much concerned as the coughing issue was something we had dealt with in the past. It was just unlucky synchronicity to have the attacks occur when they did, but now everything seemed okay.

I ended up picking up an Angel on the side of the road that day, walking to the dance. It was perfect that I ended up picking up Gabriel, who was able to watch Andora as I put my pack together. She was still having a drunk moment, and that was all I could think was the problem. Considering she had a good run earlier that morning. This would be the first time ever that Andora was not able to hike up to the dance spot on Cathedral Rock in two years of hosting Ecstatic Dance. I made the best of it, and for the first time I carried her up, little did I know how grateful I would be for that moment I was able to share.