As usual the run up to my injection was met with even more trips to the bathroom. Bowels working in overdrive. The day my nurse suggested I get incontinence pads delivered, I was a tad reserved, now I couldn’t do without them. Before I started getting the jab every three weeks I had total uncontrollable running to the loo, more than ten times per day every day. Now its greatly reduced. On a really good day, its three times a day, the week before my injection is due I’m met with a rapid increase of visits to the little room. This week as well as my usual company of my companion dog, Buddy. We had Bella getting up with us too. Bella is our 4 year old labrador retriever. Who is heavily pregnant. And lets just say the puppies were moving around in a way that she couldn’t hold the loo in for too long. Poor girl.
The night before my injection Bella starts getting even more restless, comes to me and gives me a big hug, goes into her large birthing box bed and starts digging the bed to make it comfortable. She is going to go into labour. Boy its going to be a long night. Bella starts to pant and shows all signs of first stage labour and then second stage.
At 0045am the first pup is born a little girl. She is a perfect fox red labrador retriever. Just like her daddy. Bella is so good, bites through the sack, cleans the little one up and welcomes her into the world. I give Bella a reassuring cuddle. And make sure the little and Bella are ok. They are. I take a photograph of them, I tell Steve first of course, and then send proud messages of the exciting first birth. My friend Louise lives three miles from me and asks if she can come and observe Bella giving birth and be of any assistance to me. She is there for the rest of the litter delivery.
By 0725am there are 8 puppies born into the world. Steve comes in to see Bella and is there for pup number 9 and 10. Bella feeds the puppies and a big rest. Despite being on cloud nine and so happy I’m shattered and feel like I can hardly put one foot in front of the other. I get myself washed and dressed my nurse will be here this morning to check over my gastrostomy tube, change my dressing, and give me my lanreotide injection.
10am my nurse Evelyn walks through the door. At first Bella barks, only until she realises who it is. Evelyn pops her head into the room to view the pups, and then walks along the hall. She scrubs up and then does all the needful for me. As my faithful labrador retriever, Buddy, sits by my side and watches everything my nurse does. I get ready for this painful deed to get done. Tummy first I think she says. The soiled dressing taken off, site all cleaned, helan cream and cavilon applied. And then my nice new clean dressing put on, carefully with tape not to touch my skin and cause a reaction. Evelyn then picks up my lanreotide injection. I get this every 21 days. Its your left side this time she says as I slip down my knickers. I then have to work out which way to lie so evelyn can inject my left buttock, I have enough problems with this at the best of times, put lack of sleep into the mixture and we have a recipe for disaster. I was this way and that way on the sofa. Evelyn said, just a minute and listen to me and then lie down like I tell you, it worked a treat. As she administered the injection of lantreotide buddy sat a few feet away watching all, making sure all was good. Which it was. All done. Everything put in the sharps box. A good discussion between me and my nurse, as always. Notes written.
Steve calls my name along the hall. I take myself along inviting my super nurse with me. Bella is having a contraction, and as in previous seems to want me to work with her as a team. I rub her tummy and reassure her that I am by her side. Come on Bella, one big push for mummy, I say to her. I can see her body contracting, the pain in her eyes. My lovely dog looks so tired. I can see a little tail appearing and a foot, one last push Baby belle. And so she did. Out comes the most beautiful little puppy. Puppy number 11. Bella is exhausted, I hold it while Bella bites the chord, cleans him vigorously, suddenly a little squeal comes from the puppy. Bella wags her tail. He is perfect and she is happy. Puppy number 11 was born at 1118am. What a team, you both make. Evelyn says to me. I feel very proud. Bella gave birth to 8 boys and 3 girls. I’m so pleased that things have gone well. My dog is well, her puppies are healthy and of a good size. Buddy, the daddy, watches on eagerly, I know he is desperate to play with the little fella’s.
My nurse managed to see the puppy being born, she got more than she bargained for on her home visits for this Thursday. I certainly do not doubt that she has eventful days but I guess she doesn’t have puppies making an entrance into the world very often.