Life Update: Meet Atley, my Boston Terrier and Little Survivor

Have you ever had a problem that popped up out of nowhere and completely ruined your plans? The plans you worked so hard to create, the plans that were just perfect to help you reach your goals?

That’s where I am.

My initial plan for this blog was weekly posts about travel and travel-related topics. But, even the best-laid plans must be revised in the face of obstacles.

Life or Death is never a choice

When obstacles are of a life or death nature, time stands still. Life or death of my sweet little Boston Terrier Atley was never a choice.

Last week, I returned from a two-week visit to Nashville. I picked up my Boston Terrier, Atley from my parents, before my two week vacation at home, my longest stretch in DFW for months.

I didn’t make it even one full day at home before my world was rocked. Atley, my 13-year-old Boston Terrier, had a massive stroke. I was heart-broken as I drove her three-hours to the only vet I truly trust.

Atley was unresponsive for most of the drive. She barely moved. Her eyes swayed like pendulums the little time they were open. Her little body battled for life.

When obstacles are of a life or death nature, time stands still. Click To Tweet

Grief and regret are ugly companions

I was devastated. As I held her and cried, I silently said my goodbyes, all the while wishing I had just a little more time.

I cursed myself for traveling and being away from her so often. Nothing, and I mean nothing, was important in that moment except Atley.

My lists of to-dos, calendar reminders, even calls and texts lost their meaning. I was losing my Atley, my best friend, who was always happy to see me, who loved me unconditionally…

The vet administered steroids immediately to reduce the swelling on the brain. Dr. Cherie wasn’t optimistic about Atley’s survival, much less recovery. She did what she could medically, and even more, she prayed for Atley. She took Atley home with her to continue her medications and monitor her all night.

It was a long evening in my childhood home. Grief consumed me as my mind worried and prepared for the worst. But, my heart never lost hope as I prayed for a miracle.

My hopes and prayers didn’t go unnoticed!

Miracles are real

The next morning, Dr. Cherie sent a video of my little girl walking, although quite unsteadily, all by herself. She wasn’t out of the woods, but Atley had made it through the night and was progressing better than expected.

She is improving day by day. It’s been a week, but Atley is working hard to get back to her new version of normal. And, while we don’t know exactly what her new normal will be, I am grateful each and every day for the extra time we have together.


It’s easy to get lost in the never-ending cycle of things to do, places to go, people to see, and not appreciate the wonderful things you have right in front of you. I learned the hard way that each day is a blessing.

Focusing nonstop on business and traveling and making money made me forget to be present and thankful for all the wonderful things in my life. In fact, in my last post, I shared some really great advice . . . advice I can implement today that will drastically improve all of my relationships, including the special bond I have with my little girl, Atley.

Did you ever experience an obstacle that changed all your plans? How did you overcome it, or move forward in your new reality?

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22 thoughts on “Life Update: Meet Atley, my Boston Terrier and Little Survivor

  1. You’re so right because sometimes in the moment of it all it can be hard but on the flip side you can be grateful for the wonderful things!

  2. Its so true you can get lost in the hustle and bustle of work and life that you lose sight of the important things and being grateful. Sometimes things that change it up.are exactly what is needed to get us to focus on the important things.

  3. I canโ€™t imagine how you felt but Iโ€™m so so glad Atley is doing well now. Like you said, our daily routines (work, kids, family, business) can make us forget to be thankful for the little things we have until an event happens.

  4. This is such a beautiful post! I am so glad Atley was able to make a full recovery! Pets are literally a part of the family, and can teach us a thing or two too!

  5. I am so glad to hear that she is doing alright! I hate that it always seems to be moments like this that wake us back up into realizing what is truly the most important, but sometimes those hard lessons are necessary. Giving my two pups an extra hug today after reading your story ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. I was shocked! I really thought she was dying, and I’m so happy Dr. Cherie was able to treat her so well.

    1. The vet was amazing. It’s so important to trust any medical professional, especially one who treats animals.

  6. I am glad that your dog is making a recovery. It might not be full but at least you have him. Sometimes incidents like this make you realise that you need to slow down and make the most of each day in your life.

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