Log in

No account? Create an account

Previous Story | Next Story

Shtuff Happens


In life there are happenings which come under a statement which my sister has always chuckled and said which I have cleaned up a bit for the public, but it goes like this, “’SHTUFF’ happens!” There could not be an incident which showed this so perfectly as my one-year follow-up visit last summer.

It was a perfectly beautiful early July Monday right after the holiday weekend. My dogs and I were up early. I was all ready. My dog kids were fed and happy and the coffee pot was on and the morning was terrific. My Field Manager, Marc Gillard arrived promptly, and we sat and talked about the year I have had with my beautiful yellow Lab, Hibiscus and our lives here with my retired guide, black Lab, Primrose.

Things were just terrific. I could tell Marc that I felt Hibiscus was doing just fine. We are well adjusted and functioning well. So, Hibiscus and Marc and I headed out to walk a simple route in our neighborhood which would show a few street crossings and whatever obstacle clearances and orientation exercises occurred to demonstrate that things are going well. It was an absolutely beautiful morning to be out walking, and all was just wonderful until about three-quarters of the way through the route, when my right foot caught behind a slightly lifted plate of cement in the sidewalk.

When I walk with my guide dog, I also use a balance cane in my right hand because of balance AND ONE-SIDED HEARING PROBLEMS I have and a weakened left leg. I tried my best to break the fall with my cane, but it didn’t work and I fell hard, landing on my face on which I slid a few inches. Marc and another pedestrian were at my side immediately, and I managed to get up and could tell that I hadn’t broken anything major.

We all stood there for a few moments so I could regain my composure and see what the damage was. I had broken a front tooth, skinned up my face a bit and split my lip, but was otherwise intact. Though Marc offered to go back to my house and get the car, I advised that I felt it was important to get up and continue the end of the route because I wanted Hibiscus to know that this was not something she caused. It was a crack in which my foot caught, but she was definitely not to blame for this and had performed her work flawlessly.

After showing Hibiscus the crack that had caused this situation, Hibiscus, Marc and I continued our walk and decided that I should be seen in the Emergency Room because of my badly split lip. It just so happens that the way back toward my house takes us right by the hospital emergency room where I could be treated.

Marc stayed with me for a while in the emergency room to tell me that he had seen the work that Hibiscus and I are doing in spite of the accident that we had and that Hibiscus now looks like a well seasoned guide. I knew this and had told him that he would see this, but it is always such a relief to hear it from the instructor who comes to visit, especially when shtuff happens.

Dianne, Hibiscus, and Primrose

Click to donate to GDB


( 3 Paw Prints — Leave your Paw Print )
Nov. 14th, 2009 04:55 pm (UTC)
i always enjoy reading about this Dianne, not because you were hurt, of course, but just because of the confirmation you got from marc about how well you two were doing, and just how far we come in that first year, when both the handler and the dog give all they have to it. i'm glad you posted this story on the blog.
Nov. 14th, 2009 05:03 pm (UTC)
guide dog blogathon
I received two guide dogs from GDB. The stories just posted show very well how a guide dog can make life so much safer and easier for us blind travelers. I loved reading the stories about how funny and sometimes mischievous our dogs can be. If you stopped by to read these stories, I hope you're enjoying them as much as I am. I also hope you'll consider making a donation to Guide Dogs for the Blind so they can continue their work.

Safe travels all,
Nov. 14th, 2009 08:43 pm (UTC)
Hibiscus - runs in the family
Just saying "hi" For those reading this that don't know, we raised Hibiscus' pup - Fonda - who is now a guide in Colorado. Like mother, like daughter!
Karen, Finnley and Alonzo
( 3 Paw Prints — Leave your Paw Print )