Friday, October 26, 2012

They Needed Her More Than I Did

This post is long overdue.  Not only have I (errr...I mean VITO has) been in a blogging funk for a long time, but this?  This was just too hard to write. 

On September 22, 2012, Lolly Pug went to live with her forever family!  Her new mom and dad drove allllll the way from New Orleans to St. Louis that Friday, slept at a hotel for a few hours, then picked her up at my house Saturday morning and drove alllllllll the way back to New Orleans from St. Louis that day/night.  They. Were. Fantastic.  Such nice, warm people and I immediately knew Lolly was going to be in the very best hands.  You could almost see them fall in love with her immediately.  Lolly however was shy and stuck to me, as I knew would happen.  And of course, it ripped me apart.

Baby Girl Pug getting ready to go on a road trip

They stayed for just a little while - I knew they needed to get back on the road and I also knew that I needed them to leave so that I could break down and sob in private.  Her little face leaving is forever burned in my memory, just like when Louie left, and I still cry just thinking about it.  This one was harder than Louie though - Louie still lives here in St. Louis and I knew I would see him again.

I've referenced this post a few times and it really does help me be able to give these fosters up.  "They need him more than you do" - the words of my wise Mom.  Well I knew that Lolly's parents needed her more than I did.  Even though I really WANTED her.  If ever there was a pug to fail with, Lolly was that pug (no offense, Vinny!).  Lolly's parents adopted their pug Emma from SEPRA back in 2007.  Unfortunately, she passed away just a few weeks before Lolly showed up on SEPRA's website.  They were heartbroken.  When they saw Lolly on the site, they said they just knew she was the one.  Something about her little face made them think so much of their Emma.  Their friends and family told them they were crazy to drive all the way to St. Louis for a pug - but they said it wasn't about getting any pug, it was about getting Lolly.  Emma had survived a puppy mill and had many of the same fear issues that Lolly did.  I knew they had the perfect experience and patience for Lolly and that she would thrive with them, just like Emma did.

Lolly's Mom & Dad
They say every foster takes a piece of your heart with them.  Lolly took a CHUNK of my heart with her.  She was my first girl and what a special girl she was.  She came in so scared, but so grateful.  She was here for just over 2 months, and the progress she made was incredible, and so fun to watch.  I miss watching her snuggling with the boys and wrestling with Vito, which started a few weeks before she left, and she always initiated!  She was learning how to be a pug!  I miss her raspy bark telling me to hurry up with the dinner.  I miss carrying her down the stairs (although her Mom tells me she now goes down on her own every time!) and I miss lifting her on to the sofa.  I miss her sleeping in her dog bed on top of my bed, and sometimes migrating out of it for snuggles.  I miss everything about her.


The good news is her mom sends me email updates and Lolly is doing just great.  She is loved and spoiled and comes out of her shell more and more every day, just like she did here.  I hope that she knows she is in her forever home.  My biggest obstacle when I let go of a foster, and especially in this case with Lolly and her fear issues, is that they will be scared or confused or missing me.  Lolly's mom emailed me their first day home and it included this:

"The car ride yesterday went smoothly, but Lolly was very sad leaving you.  I have never heard a pug make the sounds she was making!  She was crying and barking and HOWLING!  Howling like a wolf!  It was the most adorable and the most heart-wrenching sound we've ever heard.  She was pretty much saying, "Help! I'm being pug-napped!"  It was very clear how much she loves you and how safe she felt with you.  She will never forget you and how lucky she was to be scooped up and loved by you!  We had a major breakthrough when we stopped to get dinner.  J offered her a piece of french fry and she looked at him SO dubiously, but then she tried it and loved it!  So I think after some bites of french fries she realized we couldn't be that bad after all and she finally settled down and snuggled up on J and she was much more relaxed the rest of the ride."

The bad news is that Lolly was totally won over by that french fry and is still partial to Dad!  :)

Lolly at home in New Orleans with her SEPRA blankie
Lolly and her Grandpa.  I could not love this picture more!
Thank you so very much for letting me be your foster mom, Lolly Pug.  I will never, ever forget you or stop missing you.  You taught me so much.  I hope to see you again some day.  (And Vito and Vinny sure miss you too.  Vito will tell you just how much he misses Lolly in the next post - and WHY he misses her so much!  We MAY just have another pugger in our house right now...)

Lolly's last week with us - Vito laid with his leg on her and she held his paw.
Vito and Lolly Pug


Punchbugpug said...

So wonderfully said. You did good! Hugs with leaky eyes.... Punchy

Hank said...

Awww, Gina.

Sounds like you inherited a little of mom's wisdom. ;)

Good job, my dear. Lolly would never have settled in so quickly with her new folks were it not for you. But I do understand your pain.

Hugs -


dw said...

It took me a while to read this because when I saw your post on FB that there was a new blog post about Lolly, I knew it would bring tears to my eyes. Yes, it's fantastic that Lolly is fitting into her new home, and coming out of her shell more and more, but I know how much you loved that little girl! But this is a good ending to Lolly's story, and I thank you for giving her the opportunity to be the little puggie she always should have been.

Southern Fried Pugs said...

Fostering is so hard! Especially when you fall in love with them. But thank you for doing the hardest job in rescue. Because of you, Lolly is able to be a pug again. And if you are able to, you'll be able to do that for another pug who desperately needs you.
You're doing good work. Doing the right thing isn't easy. If it was, everyone would do it.

Angel Payton, Donald, and Daisy's Gampy said...

Lot's of wisdom in the post and the comments. All I know is that I simply couldn't do it. I am not strong enough when it comes to those little creatures, I'd adopt every darn one of them. I have nothing but the greatest respect for you Gina, and every other Foster Pug Parent as well!

Love, Gampy

Payton's mom said...

Foster parents rock, and you Gina are a rock star! You are so loving and strong and brave. Thank you for what you did for Lolly and will do for other pugs in need.

stellaroselong said...

Thank you Thank you for being a foster mommy. You are the one who teaches them that there is love in the world, and that they are finally SAFE! You cannot even imagine how special you are to us pugs who have came from bad situations. You are the link, our bridge, to our forever home. You will always be the "first" mommy they learn to love.
Stella Rose

Kitty+Coco said...

Geese Gina, don't make me cry at work! Lolly was a special girl, and I know you had a hard time with this. It is so much harder that the boys loved her too. I'm glad that you got to experience a girl pugger. I know, to put it plainly, it sucks to give her up, but man oh man did she get an amzing home.

Kitty+Coco Mama(+Mini-Me)

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