This pup spent this summer (8+ weeks of it) surviving a broken leg, and just a few days ago, the pin that slowed him down to help him heal was removed.
Even though the accident served as the last in a series of traumatic events in our newly married life, and even though we cringe at each vet bill, coaching a helpless dog through a traumatic and fragile injury was almost a gift to Patrick and me.
Focusing on Ozzie helped us get outside of our own grief, worry, wedding letdown, etc. Even when tensions or exhaustion were high, we could talk about how he was doing. We would have to focus on helping him down stairs or be patient covering his cast with socks or plastic bags to protect it. No, it wasn't very fun. But as he came out of his pain, so did we.
I'm pretty sure this cycle of care resurfaces in many forms as couples grow old together. Just when you think you can't stand one another -- there is a jolt awakening you to love and accountability to another being.
Just like Oz, we're playing again. We're laughing and singing and planning again. And we, too, snore more peacefully now that we know healing happens a little more slowly than people imagine it might.