Tag Archives: adoption

SURPRISE!

Surprise! Well, what can I say? Where has this year gone? More to the point, where did I go?

Cutting a long story short, the past year has not been good, with all three of my siblings having major health problems, my brother seriously so. With him living in Spain, it proved doubly hard for all of us, especially my mother who is no longer able to travel abroad. After the worry of one sister going through breast cancer treatment, I’ve never been one to suffer from depression but I certainly felt it this time and when, after learning about my brother’s illness, then my other sister’s condition and poor prognosis, I couldn’t stop crying, which is one of the reasons I kept my head below the backyard fence these past 9 months. It’s been a matter of coping and keeping going. It hasn’t been easy and I couldn’t have managed without the help of my husband, close family, and good friends. And thankfully, Lydia’s condition isn’t as bad as the specialist first diagnosed. With care, she can control her problem and hopefully it will not worsen.

You may recall, January saw me teaching acrylic art to a beginners class at my painting group over a 4-week period. I was nervous, spent ages working up my notes and worrying about what I would actually paint. But the course went well. Very well, in fact, and the majority of my 18 pupils are now fully-fledged members of the art group. May saw the art club’s Annual Exhibition, where many of my beginners exhibited, several of their works selling. As did two of mine, so I was well chuffed.

June saw the release of my latest novel White Stones. With so much work involved in its promotion, there’s been no time to write anything else, my head still spinning. But that’s the price we authors pay, isn’t it? Now that baby’s strings have been cut, I can finally concentrate on something new and push myself back into writing mode.

Good news came in July with little George, who’s far from little now, acquiring a baby sister. Unable to have another child, his parents turned to adoption and she arrived into the family in May 2018. The legal side proved an exceedingly complicated affair, taking over a year. We were all invited to Exeter Crown Court to the witness signing of the full adoption papers in a little ceremony, followed by a celebratory lunch. She is adorable and looks so much like her adoptive mother it’s quite amazing. Unfortunately, due to a legal caveat, we cannot post photos of her face on the internet. Dave and I made a full weekend of the event, and a lovely opportunity to catch up with various members of the family. George is doing brilliantly. Can you believe he’s just had his 11th birthday! A recent visit to the hospital showed his hips are now perfectly healed and no further surgery is required. He’ll always have problems walking but that doesn’t stop him doing things. His favourite pastime is surfing, Living on the West Devon coast, famous for its waves, he can thus indulge often.

Early summer’s good weather meant we spent a lot of time in the garden, except for during August, when we had plenty of rain – just in time for the long school summer break. Instead, Dave and I did a lot of – believe it or not – holiday hunting. He was given a holiday voucher as a retirement gift two years ago by his firm. As the voucher runs out Feb 2020, we decided we’d best make use of it. The voucher covered enough for us to book two holidays: the first to Ibiza during October, the second to mainland Spain in February.

September. A month of birthdays including my twin sisters’ 70th. The grand plan was that we would celebrate this occasion by being in Spain as it’s was also our sis-in-law’s 70th. That plan was scrapped due to my brother’s illness and Lydia’s poor health and treatment making her unable to venture abroad. Instead, my brother, wanting to surprise them, booked a flight to the UK, his doctor giving him the okay to come. At the last minute, he felt all the travelling would be too much for him. Sadly, a few weeks after their birthdays, his health deteriorated rapidly and he lost his battle with lung cancer a few days before we were due to fly out to Ibiza.

After all that entailed, we certainly needed to get away from everything and managed to enjoy a lovely, if heavy-hearted, break in the sun. Dave loved it, his first holiday for 21 years. The hotel, staff, location, food, room were perfect. It is definitely a place we intend to go back to if only for the incredible sunsets! Enjoying plenty of long walks around the large bay at San Antonio, a warm sea and the beach virtually to ourselves, we really didn’t want to come home.

Life is now returning slowly to normal. In many ways the year has gone by too quickly, winter here already ­­– yesterday we woke to snow! ­­– and Christmas will soon be upon us again; however, I will be glad when it’s 2020. A new decade, a new year, a new beginning, and new journey, one I hope you will allow me to share with you. I have missed you all. x

Kit Domino’s Website and Blog

The search is over …

Isn’t it weird how life always seems to know best? We’ve been searching for that new four-legged addition to the Joneses household for months now and despite visits to rescue centres all over the west of England, our search for our new dog has proved fruitless. Every time we got close, something happened to make it fall through. We’ve seen about six little honeys who have grabbed our affection, but there was always a reason we couldn’t proceed with the adoption. Either we were pipped at the post by another adopter, the dog had special needs and we didn’t have the experience or, in the case of a sweet little Jack Russell, the dog didn’t want to know us.

To say I was getting despondent was an understatement. It felt like the universe was conspiring against us. But then a chance conversation with a lovely manager at the rescue centre near Taunton, got us thinking about fostering. My first thought was that I wouldn’t be able to give them up. No way, it wasn’t going to happen. I mean, some of the dogs that go out for adoption are at the centre while their owners are prosecuted for neglect or abuse. How on earth was I supposed to give back an animal if the RSPCA lost the case and the dog had to be returned to its owner? Impossible. I had visions of us packing up and moving to the Outer Hebrides to avoid letting an innocent animal go back to that. But AJ was pretty keen on the idea (he’s an even bigger softie than me when it comes to helping animals), so I tried to consider the possibility. I just couldn’t get behind it.

Then another chance conversation led us to consider ‘fostering’ guide dog puppies (called ‘puppy walkers’ in the UK). The foster family undertake basic obedience training and generally care for the puppy from six weeks old until about fifteen months when the dog is ready to go into full training to become a guide dog for the blind. My first thought again was that I couldn’t give them up, but AJ was completely sold. We talked and talked about it and I realised that I could do it. Just thinking about the job these lovely dogs are born to do, convinced me that I could do it. For me, the gift of sight is one of the greatest in life and if we can be a small part of the process to help people denied this gift, then it’s a no-brainer.

All those delays, frustrations and disappointments have led us to what now feels so right for us. We are both really excited at the prospect of greeting our first little bundle of joy who will arrive (hopefully) sometime in July. We can’t wait…

Tricia