I think it’s fair to say I have travelled down every major highway in Alabama in the last month. I have explored EVERY inch of Alabama and I am tired of it. This weekend finds me in Huntsville, with Abby, for her very first soccer tournament.
It was an interesting drive, to say the least. She decided to adapt her mute persona and not speak a word. I had stopped at Wal-Greens and gotten a car adaptor for my I-Pod, so I was happy to sing at the top of my lungs and ignore her.
But after awhile, I noticed she was sniffling. “Are you crying?” I asked, but she, of course, did not answer. I asked again, but no answer. I courteously pointed to the tissues, she grabbed one and blew her nose and suddenly became animated. I decided it was allergies and forgot about it.
We stopped for dinner and everything was fine. But after the last fry was gone, she looked at me and said “mommy, there’s something wrong with me. I keep crying for no reason.”
I immediately snapped the I-pod off and gave her my full attention. “What’s wrong?” I asked her.
“Nothing,” she said, turning away from me.
“Abby if there’s something wrong you can tell me,” I told her in my best Donna Reed voice.
“I don’t want to talk about it,” she huffed.
“Abby, come on, you can tell me. Did someone hurt your feelings? Is it a boy?”
But she continued to deny there was a problem.
After a few minutes, I gave up and tried to turn the I-pod back on. Unfortunately, I couldn’t get the freakin’ adaptor to work again. This caused me great distress and many words of the swearing variety left my mouth.
I turned it off again, and Abby must have felt sorry for me, because she gave me a nugget. “It’s about a friend….my best friend and she can’t talk.”
“Did she lose her voice?” I asked rather stupidly.
“No mom,” she said in exasperation.
I guessed for several minutes, she coyly denying every name I mentioned, and just when I was about to give up, it hit me. “Is it….Sammy?” I asked. Sammy is one of our dogs.
“Yeeeeeeeeesssssss,” she cried dramatically, gearing up for a sobfest.
“Well, what about her?” I asked a bit crossly.
She began to sob, great heaving cries of despair.
“Abby, what is it? She’s not sick, she’s fine!”
“But she’s gonna die one day!!!!” she wailed.
OH MY GOD!!! Could we borrow some trouble here? The dog is ten years old and in perfect health. She is in absolutely no danger of dropping dead! So why the sobs? One can only conjecture that the hormone balance within Abby’s body is incredibly precarious. At any moment, she could turn into a homicidal maniac, wielding a fork and demanding chocolate. Or worse, she could decide to sob all the way to Huntsville, grieving for our lively, healthy dog who will probably die one day six years from now.
So that’s how our weekend has started. Me holding Abby’s hand for thirty miles of interstate as she wept for the brief life of our schnauzer. I can only hope tomorrow is a better day!