Chapter 3 sequel to ‘the girl down the street’
Ellie was 3 years old when I got her, I find myself so dependent upon her that it would be devastating if something happened to her. As I sit on my bed contemplating what has happened in the past year and in years past I realize how much I have been through and how far I have come, yet I still depend on Ellie.
My classes will be starting on Monday I am excited and scared knowing I am starting a new adventure in my life, one that will take me out of my comfort zone. Each instructor has a right to deny Ellie in their classrooms. My first weeks here I decided to deal with it head on; I went to each instructor told them about Ellie and why I need her. I also asked them to keep what I am telling them privately not wanting to share my intimate details with the world nor share my weakness. They were all understanding and very supportive. One of the instructors said the only time there may be a problem is if one of the other students have allergies or has a fear of dogs.
The first day I had 3 classes, they each went smoothly, a problem did not arise in regards to Ellie until the last class of my second day. One of the students was opposed to me having Ellie there; he did not believe that I had a disability warranting a service dog. The instructor pointed out that Ellie and I went through a rigorous training and vetting process. For the time being Ellie will be able to escort me; the instructor told me that the policy of the college was that service dogs were allowed for those who were sight impaired but that the guidelines did not specify any other maladies that would warrant a service dog.
No one mentioned Ellie again; many were indifferent to being in class they were focused on the class at hand. Some were positive and treated her like she was a mascot. By October I noticed Ellie was having problems getting up from a sitting position, it soon became apparent she was having hip problems. I took her to the clinic where other students were working and gaining credit for their Veterinary degrees. My worst fear was realized after taking X-rays. Ellie’s hip dysplasia was severe; I called my parents and told them through my hysteria that I was going to have to put Ellie to sleep. My dad said to wait till he arrived he would take her home and bury her in our backyard. I waited and spent the last night with Ellie sleeping with her in my bed as I wet her fur with my tears.
Once my dad left I felt as alone as I did when Rats snatched me off the street. Claudia and Brad were so wonderful showering me with attention, affection, and food. Jason came home with his girlfriend Willow Labinski. I smiled when I heard her last name and that reaction did not go unnoticed she sat down next to me and we started to talk about all things Polish. Sometimes God works in mysterious ways. Don’t get me wrong I was still upset, but my new friend Willow took some of the sting away.