Sorry about all the cliffhangers lately.... so much has been going on....and I have so little time to write with the kids home and all the non-scheduled stuff of summer.
OK, on to the family walk from Father's Day....
Taking family walks is something that we've always done. Years ago - especially when the kids and dogs were younger - it was a daily thing.
Nowadays, hanging with the folks is not an activity that the kids generally want to do and Smokey would rather lounge around than mark every lawn on the block.
But hey, it was Father's Day.... let's do it.
Smokey's not up to a full trip anymore so we have taken to walking her to the corner, crossing the street, and then taking her home. Thus, she gets her bit of exercise as well as a bunch of new lawns to sniff. It's a win-win situation.
We started out. She was excited. And, as the six of us headed down the block, it reminded me of old times.
And then Smokey made a noise and stumbled. Rich grabbed her and, thinking that she had something in her mouth, tried to pry it open.
Her tongue was blue and she had stopped breathing.
Carissa started crying and Sean took her and held her tight to him.
"Carissa, don't look. Don't look," he shouted as he kept her wrapped in his arms, keeping her from turning around.
We worked feverishly on Smokey....opening her mouth to see if there was something in there and then each of us doing mouth-to-snout.
My head was screaming, "Not today. Not now."
Sean just held his sister and kept saying, "Don't look."
I decided to make a run for home and get the car - maybe we could get Smokey to the hospital in time. I started to run with Ashley but Carissa wouldn't move... she was too traumatized.
Sean scooped her up and started running for home.
It was an amazing sight to see..like a soldier carrying his comrade.
It was a moment that is snapshot into my memory.
Of course, the action ticked Carissa off. Sean put her down and she joined the frantic dash for home.
We got to the house. I opened the front door and instructed the older kids.
"Get Daddy's wallet and cellphone. They're on the counter."
I buckled Ashley in her car seat while I waited for Sean and Carissa to come out.
Sean came running....
"I have Dad's wallet but I couldn't find his cellphone. I brought the regular phone instead."
Take a second and think about that... he brought the regular phone...
What a sweet kid.
We jumped in the car and raced down the street to where Rich was leaning over Smokey laying on the sidewalk.
He went to pick her up and, just like Carissa, she squirmed to get away.
Ahhhh... she's back.
We got her home and tried as we could to settle down from the evening's events.
Smokey eventually came around enough to drink some water and take a nap. We knew all was back to normal when Carissa went over to give her some love and Smokey growled at her. The two of them have a special bond and that's merely Smokey's way of talking to her.
Rich and I sat down that night to discuss the "what ifs" that are a certainty in our future.
And then we talked about Sean... and how calm and wonderful and protective he was throughout the whole ordeal.
He really was our hero.
And not even autism could steal that away from us.