Childhood epileptic encephalopathy (Lennox-Gastaut syndrome [LGS]) is a rare and debilitating form of childhood-onset epilepsy. The syndrome is characterized by frequent seizures and multiple seizure types, a resistance to medications or therapies, regression, and an abnormal EEG with generalized slow spike-and-wave discharges. LGS constitutes between 1-4% of pediatric epilepsies and typically appears between the second and sixth year of life.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

My Friend Bailey

While I know this blog is for Michael I needed an outlet.

Today I lost a good friend, my 10 1/2 year old Chocolate Lab "Bailey". While in the last few months she had started showing her age a bit, limping when she got up, not as much energy, I was not expecting her to be gone so soon. Today was unexpected and a bit surreal. This afternoon she began having shortness of breath and soon after, things went from bad to worse. I knew she was dying so I was with her on her bed when she passed. It was like talking to a person, I knew she was struggling to breathe and that her time was near and I told her it was "OK to go" and "we would be OK, it was OK". It was though she was waiting for permission. I was starting to cry and while crying I told her "you are the best dog I've ever had" and she took two more breathes and she was gone. What a moment. I cried hard for a while and just stayed there with her for a long time. She would have done the same for me.

She was simply the best dog I have ever owned and may ever own. She was a great, loyal friend. She ran with me (up to 10 miles in her younger days), hunted with me (dove or quail...she would go down holes and into cactus patches after quail if they were only wounded and getting away....and she would get them!), and was just happy hanging out with me. Even in the front yard when other dogs would walk by, she would just look up, she never ran to them or bolted. Simply happy to be with me doing whatever I was doing. She met me at the door everyday when I got home, even when I would get home late and everyone else was asleep, and she would lay in the office when I worked late (sometimes till 1 or so) until I was finished, then she would go to bed. If I put on a camo shirt or wrangler jeans, she knew I was not going to work and would be doing something she would like and she would get all fired up. It was great. All she wanted to do was be around me and make me happy. As "man's best friend" she showed me unconditional love, everyday.

My friend Blake gave me Bailey as a Christmas gift in December 1999. His dog Stolie was the daddy of a litter of puppies and his "fee" was the pick of the litter which he gave to me. Susan and I picked Bailey. Like many newlyweds who use a puppy as a "test" before kids, Bailey too would prove to be the training ground for our future kiddos. I taught her all the commands and how to retrieve for hunting. She did great. Susan and I loved Bailey. With no kids in the house at the time, she was our kid. When kids did come along for us, Bailey was right there too. She was great with all the kids and very tolerant. She always gave them plenty of latitude, especially in their toddler years. She was really great with Michael and seemed to know he needed the most tolerance. At times, when Bailey was pushed to the max, she would just get up and go in the other room (or to her bed). She was a great first pet for the kids.

I have many stories about Bailey from trail running with her to South Texas hunting trips to having her clean up after each meal from our kids (or me) spilling stuff on the floor to just hanging out or fetching her favorite rope toy, but I will not include them here. Just know she was the best dog for me and we were blessed she came into our life. I will miss her...I already do.

I would like to thank Blake for giving us Bailey. Giving a newlywed couple a puppy could have been bad as she could have been a lemon. She was not, she was a diamond and the best gift.

Johnny, thanks for coming over tonight. You knew Susan was out of town so you coming over was much appreciated.

Well, I feel a bit better now, I could write about Bailey for hours but lucky for you I'm done.


mbc said...

Oh Craig, gulp. I'm so sorry.

TheKennedys said...

Craig I am so sorry! She looked so good the other day when we saw her. Thinking of you guys. We sooo know how hard it is to lose such a good little buddy!