A Guardian Angel Named Lucky
I moved to the Washington State in 1996 to be closer with family who had already relocated to the ever-green-state. I quickly found a job at a private golf club and then became involved with an animal rescue organization on Whidbey Island in Western Washington. WAIF or, Whidbey Animal Improvement Foundation, as it is still called, took on the daunting task of financially supporting many unwanted and abandoned pets as people moved off of the island leaving their dogs and cats to fend for themselves.
About a year and half after my move I got a phone call one early evening from another volunteer from the WAIF shelter in a state of pure panic. Earlier in the day she had witnessed a car throw something out of a window as it sped past her house, concerned about just what that might have been she went out to look. And to her shock and dismay she found that the object that had been tossed was a kitten lying semiconscious in the middle of the road. She quickly scooped up this tiny ball of fur and was off to the vet where it was diagnosed as just being in shock and having a few bumps and bruises. This volunteer already had many dogs and cats in her own home and felt that one more was just too much for her small house and yard, which is where I came in, and why she was calling me. She couldn’t bare the thought of taking this kitten and turning her over to the shelter as she felt that this kitten had been through enough already and would I please consider adopting her? Answering no wasn’t an option, even though I already had two cats in my apartment. Which is how Lucky, as this volunteer friend had already named her, came to me.
Two years later one of those original two cats passed on just as I was struck down with my first MS attack and it wasn’t long after that the second cat followed in much the same way leaving just myself and Lucky to deal with my new life as a person with Multiple Sclerosis. I was literally rocked to my physical and emotional core but Lucky became the lifeline that I clung to as she always seemed to sense when I needed her most.
For most people dealing with insurance companies, hospitals, doctors, while trying to stay employed are just some of life’s little nuisances that have to be dealt with when time permits. However, when you find yourself facing an incurable disease they become something more on the line of monumental challenges where the rules are rarely, if ever, explained to you. And it’s at times like these where the tears often fall as the aggravation mounts to levels that most people either don’t, or can’t, comprehend. And it was always at times like these that Lucky would realize how badly she was needed on my lap, even when I’m sure, she would much rather have been outside climbing a tree or chasing a bird or a mouse.
As the years passed Lucky was my ever present rock against, for profit insurance companies, who could have cared less whether I got any better or not as they tried their best to keep the cost of my healthcare as low as possible. And she never complained once about my loud vocal outbursts when trying to map my way through government agencies that I thought were there to help you but more often then not end up creating even more stress as they pass you from one level of bureaucracy onto the next.
And now eighteen plus years later, as I watch her deal bravely with her own health issues of having both kidney and liver disease knowing that the end is not far into the future for her, I realize the most important gift of all that she has given me. And that is that we are all here to learn to live, love, and overcome all of these challenges that are thrown our way as best we can with what God has given us to help us endure these trials of life. And my Angel Lucky taught me this, without ever saying a word.
This article was recently published in MS Focus Magazine!
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