Is New Always Better?
Well, what a week this has been.
My cocker spaniel Gracie had her pups this week. The fact that she was having puppies was planned. Nothing else about what happened was. We thought we were prepared. But we weren’t, not really. And not emotionally.
So – we had some of the ‘stuff’ you might need – equipment wise. We had watched video’s about what would happen. I had spoken to the breeder we got Gracie from – as she had previous litters. We had read stuff, talked to people.
Then on Monday, she stopped eating (first sign). My son and I stayed up all night Monday. Nothing happened. Tuesday nothing happened. Tuesday night nearing 8 pm it started. Contractions. First puppy out – a girl nearly totally white, 217 grams of cuteness. Half an hour later came a boy – red like his Mum (I call her a golden cocker but apparently the correct term is Red) and 288g. More cuteness.
Then nothing. We waited. Nothing.
We had previously had an ultrasound which only showed 2 and as she is 5 years old now – even though her “norm” before was 4 pups, we thought maybe 2 was it. We rang the breeder, we rang the vet. Everyone said – if she is not pushing then it’s probably over.
At 12 my daughter went to bed. But I stayed up – I felt something wasn’t right. She was panting. Not contracting. Not pushing. But panting.
And at 2am the contractions started again. And 5 minutes later a beautiful Sable boy was born….dead. An emergency trip to vet. X-ray taken. There’s another one. Mum and pups taken home. 3.50am contractions and a few mins later another beautiful sable boy….also stillborn.
Now, I know they are “just puppies”, but I was so sad, and so was my son (15) who had stayed up with me and was my hero and a blessing. I could not have made the trip to the vet without him to calm the anxious Mum and stop the puppies suffocating themselves under warm blankets.
The vet said the delay in contractions was because the puppies were already dead and therefore not triggering the contractions to start, not that they were dead because of the delay. Maybe she told me that to make me feel better because I felt I should have brought her in earlier. Having said that I rang the vet at 10 and 11 and 12, and they said if she is not pushing, no need to bring her. Maybe it wouldn’t have made any difference.
The point is that is was a totally new situation for me. And when you are faced with new situations you should prepare, as much as possible, but not beat yourself up when things go off track. And they often will.
Next time I will know some stuff I didn’t know this time (if there is a next time). And it wasn’t how I would have chosen my first puppy experience to have gone – at least not the second half of it. But today Mother and Babies are doing well, and maybe Mother Nature knew something we don’t.
And it made me think.
The same stuff happens all the time with new situations, doesn’t it? Some ideas, some businesses take off, others die. The new situation doesn’t always seem like the best thing, and there can be some shit to deal with before you can enjoy the new ‘norm’.
My social media business has been a bit like that. The business really took off and has grown faster than anticipated. We weren’t as prepared for that as we thought we were and some things didn’t work out. There were some casualties. Some of it didn’t feel good at the time. But everything we experienced has made us grow. We have learned a ton of stuff. And as a result, we are doing things differently and better. And that will continue on. And that’s just life.
Life is exactly what you decide it is going to be. Yesterday we were very sad about the 2 little baby angels. Today we are still sad about that but we choose to be joyful and grateful for the two baby angels we still have.
So, is new always better?
Well, mostly I think it is. Of course, bad things happen, things you didn’t anticipate and couldn’t have planned for. And you could, of course, stay safe in your ‘known’ zone, never venturing out of it for fear things will go wrong. But they do say that the number one thing that comes up on deathbeds (who does THAT survey??) is regretting stuff. Not stuff that people did that was wrong, or failed. No the regrets they have are for the things they WISH they had done. The life they WISHED they had lived.
And here’s the thing. Things will go wrong and bad stuff will happen, whether you try new stuff or not. You can’t stop bad stuff happening by not LIVING. It is how you deal with it that matters. Personally, I would rather venture into the unknown, with all its messy, difficult, sleep depriving and sometimes heart piercing moments, (and it’s amazing, jaw droppingly joyful ones), then live in the safety and boredom of the known all the time. As someone very wise once said – I would rather have 5 minutes of wonderful, then a lifetime of regret.