Monday, 13 July 2015

Out Of Context

I felt compelled to blog again today after a chance encounter outside Halfords
I had just spent a bewildering half hour looking at lino at the carpet warehouse and was walking back to the berlingo when two teenage boys walked out of  the bike shop.
One of them looked vaguely familiar, though I couldn't place him, and as I passed , he said  " Hello" somewhat awkwardly and added " I'm sorry about your little dog"
Now although this completely flummoxed me, I smiled and politely said "  Thank you" before sort of doing that little dancing shuffle people do as they pass someone else on the pavement. He and his friend then edged away rather an embarrassed way and so did I, and I found myself wracking  my brains to remember exactly who he was .
Was he someone's son from work? Or a blog reader? I doubted it  but
It came to me as I got into the car.
He had been in the vet's office when I took Meg in to be put to sleep and I had been rude to him.
I didn't mean to be rude, I was just upset, but I was rude.
When I entered the examination room, the boy was standing to one side behind the rosy faced vet. He wore an ill fitting shirt and tie and looked uncomfortable. I immediately thought he was on some school placement .( we used to call them job creation places in my day) The vet didnt introduce him and I was more preoccupied with what was going to happen to be bothered to ask.
We discussed Meg and when it was time to give her the anaesthetic, the vet hurried Meg out to cannulate her in another room.
I knew the format for  I had done it already with Mabel, so I knew that both would return for the deed to be done, so I steeled myself for what was about to happen.
The boy just stood there. Too young to say something. Too awkward and unprepared to leave. The vet should have taken him with her, but she didn't and I couldn't bear him, a stranger, being in the same room with me and my tears so I turned to him and said a little too firmly " Can You please leave?" .
Bless  him, he shot out of that examination room like a rat up a drainpipe.

At the berlingo, I looked around to,see where he had gone to, but he had disappeared .
and I felt like crying all over again.


60 comments:

  1. Aww John he obviously didn't take exception to what you said - he understands what you were going through. Xx

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  2. Bless you John, he obviously hadn't taken offence or he wouldn't have offered you his condolences.....nice lad. I guess he was on work experience. The vet should have introduced him though.

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  3. Don't beat yourself up John.

    If the young man had taken offence he wouldn't have spoken to you. It sounds like he has the making of good vet or vet nurse in him.

    He cares about the patient's human.

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  4. So lovely.
    He'd had a big part in your life and had the guts later to mention it.

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  5. I understand feeling that way, but you should not beat yourself up because it seems like the young man understood what you were going through. Good future vet there.
    If you feel up to it, you can always send a note to the vet in regards to her tending to Meg and also mention the young man's kindness and ask her to thank him for you.

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    1. I think sending a note is a very good idea.

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    3. I like the note idea also.

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  6. Sounds like a nice boy. If he had a placement with a vet he is probably quite clever and may have aspirations in that direction himself. Clearly he didn't hold your rudeness against you which is just as well as some teenage boys would have walloped you and run off with your scotch eggs.

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  7. As I see it, John, as young as the boy was, he realized your distress and respected your "request" for privacy. Here in SA we can ask to stay with our pet as they go to sleep. I always reminisce with them about when they were babies...

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  8. Don't beat yourself up about it John....he seems to have a sensible head and heart and perfectly understood.

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  9. Bless your heart!!!
    Then stop by the Vet's and talk to him...it will ease your heart And his...
    hughugs

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    1. This Donna agrees. Will be a good life lesson for the boy.

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  10. I agree with what everyone else said. The boy knew you were very distressed and I'm certain he didn't feel himself offended....in fact, he was probably relieved to be ordered to leave, it sounds as if he was in an awkward position and was probably terribly uncomfortable. And how kind of him to speak to you. I would stop by the vet's office and thank him or else send a note. What a good young man. :)

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    1. Just what I was thinking, too. And I'm sure he understood your pain and frame of mind at the time. Don't beat yourself up but if it would make you feel better, Jennifer has the right idea.

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    2. I agree, and with Miss Fifi.

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  11. I don't think there are any real rules of behavior when it comes to that moment just before.... . I'll bet the boy knew how you felt and knew you would like some privacy to grieve.

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  12. That was decent of him to acknowledge the loss of your pet. It sounds like he was too 'green' to realize how to behave at the vet's office. Also: I'm sorry for your loss, John.

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  13. I think everyone...especially Jennifer have summed it all up so very well. There is no doubt it will always be a moment that neither you, nor that young man, will ever forget. I'm sure he understands or he would not have been brave enough to speak to you. Bless. X

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  14. Nice. So many comments above express it better than I could have done.

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  15. oh dear me, I am sure he knew how upset you were that day.

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  16. What a tender hearted fellow to add the descriptor "little"; he won't care you shuffled a little. This is all part of his life learning, and you and the little dog will stand him in good stead.

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  17. He obviously understood your pain on the day and will no doubt understand your confusion today. Don't let it play on your mind. If you see him again you can give him a big grin and say 'thank you for being there'.

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  18. Oh John, I'm sure he realised the horrible time you were having, He obviously bears no grudge or he wouldn't have spoken to you. Now go and give Lady Winnie a big sloppy kiss x

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  19. Just having a catch up on your blog. Sorry to hear about your loss. But I'd say that lad wasn't offened at all, he would have avoided you otherwise or at least not said anything. Hope you're well x

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  20. Hugs, John. I wouldn't even try to advise on this. You'll see the young man again ... sometime.

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  21. Sounds to me like he understood and there's no need to apologise. You'll bump into him again I'm sure. Now you know the face. They do put these young people in situations they aren't prepared for don't they. My step-step son, the yogurt churner, was at the bedside of a dying elderly person yesterday at work and was there when she passed. He was pretty upset by it. Very depressed last night.

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  22. Bravo to the young man for approaching you. It would have been so easy for him to have just looked the other way.

    And bravo to you for this post.

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  23. PS Photo title "me and my dog" should be "Meg and her human"

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  24. I am sure he understood John. x

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  25. If the lad was there on Work Experience, he will make a good Vet!! He is obviously very caring. Don't worry about the situation it was an experience, just what he was there to learn from. My son's girlfriend is training to be a Vet and she says the owners are far more complex than the animals!!! X

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  26. Bless. Talk to him if you can, or send a note, yes.
    You are a good man, John Gray. I have told you that before but I will repeat it.

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  27. He is obviously an empathetic and sensitive young man, who reached out to you today, despite your own perceived rudeness towards him that day. Clearly, he understood then and shared your awkwardness at not being able to immediately place him, today. Perhaps your paths will cross again and you will have the opportunity to apologise, if that is what you feel you need to do. I agree with the comments others have made, that if he is hoping to become a vet someday, he will be an asset to the profession with his demonstration of compassion to a complete stranger. Just as you have been towards the countless strangers towards whom you have shown compassion in your nursing career. I am sure there were times when you encountered pain disguised as rudeness, too, and you understood and took no offence.

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  28. So many have already said what I was thinking so just here to agree, it would have been so easy to ignore you, he clearly understood your previous distress and did not think you rude. X

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  29. But how heartening that he could express his feelings to you John. Maybe you will see him again one day and then you can tell him so to his face.

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  30. It sounds like the boy did the right thing approaching you. I'm sure your Vet meant well but any student should be introduced.
    You will get the opportunity to speak to him someday x

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  31. Sounds a well brought up boy to be offended too much, very decent of him to offer his condolences. Perhaps you will see him again, threes a charm and all that x

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  32. I'm sure you have been on the receiving end of something similar at work. People in distress don't mean to offend and what a nice lad to understand that.

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  33. Be glad that you met a nice young man. He did not have to acknowledge you, but he took the time to be kind and sympathetic. We need more young people like that.

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  34. See, you have proved again what a kind hearted person you are! Otherwise you wouldn't have gone to look for him today. He is obviously not as upset as you are, how good that he said that!

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  35. It doesn't sound as if he thought you were rude at all. Hurting yes, but not rude.
    I like the suggestion to leave a note at the vets for him though.

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  36. Sounds like he's a caring kid who understood what you were going through. That's refreshing nowadays.

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  37. I agree with all the comments! It is a measure of your sensitivity and kindness that you want him to know how you appreciate his words . He seems just the right sort of guy to be a caring and good Vet.

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  38. It is hard when you see someone like this lad who is associated with great loss and pain, it brings it all back again . This young lad sounds a good sort when he acknowledged the loss of Meg . Thinking of you John and your loss of little Meg xxxx

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  39. So many here have expressed it better than I could, but I would like to point out one other thing:

    If the situation were reversed, you would not have thought him rude, and would have understood... and so did he. Acknowledging that in some way would be both graceful, and a boost for an empathetic young man.

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  40. Just to let everyone know , i have droped the vets an email

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    1. Good for you, John. As we were discussing here the other day, we don't acknowledge people enough for the good things they do. The lad will get a boost from your words.

      In our old dog sport, people generally didn't talk about the dog you just lost or ask how you are doing, when you go to the next event. It seems odd, but actually it is a kindness. If everyone there came up one by one, you'd be in floods of tears and you'd dread going. There are times when you have to be out in public when you just need people not to talk about it even if they know, at least for a little while. The lad wasn't to know that though. xxx

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  41. Oh, John, I'm so sorry. Everything is a reminder.

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  42. Oh bless his heart, how much he must have wanted to comfort you .. to put himself out like that . I am so glad you left a note .. of course he knows how sad you are and will be understanding .
    I know how you feel in 2 ways .. when we lived in Buenos Aires, we had our Standard Poodle with us .. there are no Standard Poodles in Argentina. so walking him was similar to walking an orangutan down the street, people would stop, stare, take photos and ask if they could touch him.
    Over the years, everyone in the neighborhood knew him. When he died, it was dreadful. Every day some kind person either asked where he was or gave us their sympathy.
    It hurts but it is kindness.
    These are the worst days John ... it gets better .. eventually .. I want to get a dog soon .. it has been a couple of years now .. but I worry I will not love the new dog the way I loved my Pup.
    Sending love.. C

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    1. Dear Notes: You will; you will.

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  43. I'm sure he understood and, if he didn't, at some point in his life he definitely will.

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  44. Nice that he showed his true feelings, so many kids these days would have ignored you.

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  45. Oh, well. It's nice that he said something to you, and you thanked him. It sounds like it all ended OK, and I'm sure he understood.

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  46. I'm sure he was relieved that you asked him to leave, he's young, and it takes time to learn how to deal with a stranger's grief.
    He's obviously a compassionate young lad, and not at all offended by your comment on the day. If he's interested in becoming a vet, the occasion was just another bit of training.

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  47. I just need to share, as I'm sure you will empathise, that my sweet Cocker, Pandy, was euthanased a couple of days ago. I'm as heartbroken as anyone who has had to make that decision. The house is now unbearably quiet and lonely. The staff at my vet centre have been amazing and even sent flowers. I've felt so sorry for you and Cro with your recent losses and now I've painfully gone through the same. It's so tough.

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  48. It's a difficult encounter for any of us especially a child.... but bless him for his words today. Beyond his age? He has been taught well.

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  49. I'm glad you sent a note. Good on the lad for saying his piece. To me, as others have said, it shows he didn't hold it against you, and was probably only too relieved to leave the room.

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  50. He has a good heart. It's all right.

    Love,
    Janie

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  51. I would imagine that even at his tender age, he understood your trauma and thought none the worse of you for it. How lovely of you to send a note.

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