AnAmericanDogInParis

The Adventures of a 12 pound Shetland Sheepdog (Sheltie) going to Paris.

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Tom & Maxine like to travel. Blogging helps us create a record of the trips, and share with friends and family...

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Lori

In the early stages of planning this trip we knew that one of the big hurdles would in fact be our American dog who we were planning to take to Paris.  It's not necessary to rehash how difficult we envisioned it would be for Cassie to behave there.  We worried that we'd end up locking her into the apartment's bathroom each day when we went out.  Instead, Cassie became an integral part of our experience of Paris.  As I said somewhere in the blog, 90% of our non-commercial conversations with French people came about as a result of Cassie.  We felt more a part of Paris, being there with our dog. 

Also in earlier entries to this blog I talk about Lori, the trainer we worked with who effected this transformation in Cassie's behavior.  Again, repeating what I'd said earlier, Lori's skill made this trip possible for us in the best possible way.  There is no doubt -- we owed it all to Lori and told her repeatedly.

When we returned to LA, we continued to stay in touch with Lori.  We'd developed a friendship over hours of Cassie training and would go to each other's homes for dinners, and occasionally out for lunch as well.  Our last lunch with Lori was in August 2014.  We knew she was sick, but we didn't realize at that time (and don't know to what degree she knew) how sick she was. 

Below are her last words from the CaringBridge site:

This year I was shocked to find out I had lung cancer.  I began a medical protocol of chemotherapy several months ago.  I have been in the care of an excellent medical team at UCLA.  Despite their best efforts, the cancer metastasized.  I am currently on a program that is designed to manage my physical pain, of which there is plenty.  I have a very small group of cherished and close friends and family helping me.  Anyone who comes to this page I know is also a friend and dear to my heart.  I appreciate any thoughts or comments you may leave in the journal, but I have one request: please make this Caring Bridge journal your only conduit to communicate with me.  I will post occasional updates, although they probably won't be too frequent or regular.  I find I need all of my energy and internal resources to deal with my circumstances, and even a short text or email is exhausting for me to respond to.  I found myself trying to answer all the texts, emails and calls that came to me just before I began using this site.  It was an overwhelming task and caused me emotional pain that I couldn't keep up with you all.  And it quickly became clear that with the time I have left, I must protect myself.  Texting and emailing is just a poor use of what has become most precious to me - the gift of time.  When I was young, the borders of what I wanted to do and the time I had to do it all were wide open and expansive.  I have arrived at a very different place, and now the borders of what I want and have to do are very narrow.  I hope you understand.  I will read or have your comments read to me from these pages.  Thank you for your love, understanding and caring.

Lori died just 2 months after our lunch and just a few days after her birthday.  We didn't find out until very recently.  To say we're sad doesn't even begin to do it justice.  She was our friend and now she's gone.  Goodbye Lori, and thank you from the bottom of our hearts for all you did for us...  Tom & Maxine, and Cassie and Emmy.

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