Posted on February 15, 2023

Hello Trouble - Gebo's

Mom had two dogs that she raised together. One was a Dachshund named Lacey, and a Pomeranian named Boo. They were inseparable. When Mom would clap her hands, Boo would dance on his hind legs and Lacey would watch, a great big doggie smile on her face! But Lacey got cancer and was very sick. Boo would not leave her side. When Lacey died, Boo quit eating or drinking. He missed his lifelong playmate. Two weeks after Lacey died, so did Boo. 

Brokenhearted, Mom decided that was it. No more dogs. No more caring for and loving an animal that would die and leave her. 

Then, one day my brother brought over this Chihuahua named Trouble. At first, Mom refused to have anything to do with her. She was not going to be hurt again! But soon Trouble wormed her way into Mom's heart. Mother was by nature a very loving person, and here was this tiny dog who needed her and followed her around everywhere she went. The love between them grew into something you could almost touch. 

Mom started taking Trouble for walks; no easy task since Mom had to use a walker. Still, not a day went by that didn't see the two of them out on that blacktop road. Mom would hook Trouble's leash onto her walker and away they would go. Trouble would check out any and everything she saw or heard. Mom would patiently wait for her. When Trouble had explored enough, here they'd go again. Finally, when both woman and dog were worn out, they'd head home and Mom would fix them something to eat. Trouble didn't know what dog food was. If Mom ate it, so did she. Whatever Mom cooked, she always made extra for Trouble. Somehow, I don't think Trouble ever knew she was a dog!   

Trouble had a sweater that my friend found at a garage sale. It was made like a name tag and it said "HELLO MY NAME IS TROUBLE !"  Mom said that Trouble wore that sweater all the time. She would have to struggle with her to get it off just so she could wash it. Finally, Trouble outgrew the sweater, but Mom kept it as a keepsake.

Trouble lived up to, or down to, her name; depending on your perspective. She knew that if I came over, that usually meant I was going to take Mom somewhere. Trouble would start whining and big tears would run down her face. Mom would say "Well, maybe I don't have to go...." I'd look at her and roll my eyes. "Yes, Mother. You have to go." She would start talking to Trouble like she was talking to a child and going to be gone for days instead of just a few hours. And I swear that dog understood her. "It'll be ok, Trouble, I'll be back soon. Then we'll go, or do,…” Mom would promise her anything until she quit crying.  

But when we got home, Trouble would turn her nose up and not even look at Mother. She was trained to a puppy pad, so, she would go into the room where her pad was, get on it, make eye contact with Mom, then step off the pad and pee on the floor! Then she would look at Mom as if to say "That's what you get for leaving me." Trouble was a spoiled brat!! 

As the years passed, the two became inseparable. Rarely did you see one without the other.  As Mom aged, she left the house less often. When she had to go to the doctor or anywhere, it was always the same old spiel; Trouble would cry, Mom would promise, and I would roll my eyes. But not where Mom could see me. You never get too old for your mother to swat your bottom! 

Mom had a pair of birds that she would sometimes sing to. Trouble would join in. Soon you had birds chirping, Mom singing, and Trouble barking. It was a ruckus, but they loved it.  

Speaking of noises, neither Mom nor Trouble liked loud ones. And my brother, Mike, could get LOUD! He would sometimes argue with Mom and Trouble would start growling at him.  She was fiercely protective of Mother. A friend of Mom's told me that Trouble almost bit Mike once, that Mom barely caught her in time. When Mike drew back his hand to hit Trouble, Mom went crazy! Nobody hit Trouble!! Bobby said Mike narrowly escaped having Mom's walker thrown at him. I wish I could have seen that. 

Mom was on oxygen. One day, a man came by to check her tanks. For some reason, Trouble didn’t like him. It could have been as simple as the fact that he was a stranger. Trouble didn’t trust strangers! She lunged at him and almost bit him in the crotch, all unbeknownst to the poor man. When he finally left, Bobby told me that she and Mom burst out laughing!  The guy never had a clue of the danger he was in. 

There are so many stories about Mom and Trouble, I don't have room to write them all down. When Mom died, we all thought that Trouble would grieve herself to death. She might have, if not for my cousin. Nooney took Trouble in and treated her like royalty. She let Trouble ride in the truck, a new experience for her, one of many as I understand. Since Nooney took better care of her animals than herself, Trouble didn't want for anything. I can just see her riding "shotgun" with Nooney. I'm not sure how long Trouble lived after Mom, but I know they were happy days. Somehow, I don't think Mom would have had it any other way. 

If you believe as I do that there are animals in Heaven, then I know that Mom and Trouble are together. And when I see them again no one will be crying, least of all Trouble!

Written by: Gail Lindsey

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