McFoBen = Mc(alear) + Fo(x) + Ben(son)
We have done a stupendous job of trying to screw this up and we have succeeded on many occasions but today I celebrate 15 years of marriage to Andrew Martin Fox, my fellow Fierce Fighter and partner in building McFoBen. We navigated a minefield together as we raised our amazing daughter, Cecilia McAlear.
Sometimes one of us had planted the mine, more often they were tossed in front of us, and we dodged through them, bandaging one another along the way.
We saved my father’s life together before ultimately letting him go together. We have offered refuge and comfort to many who felt lonely or displaced over the years. We have mourned and buried others. We built a family of friends who share our values of loyalty and non-judgement and we have all helped and healed one another along the way. We have surely shocked neighbors with arguments that were too loud.
Last week we were blasted very unexpectedly by the sudden death of Poppy, the three-legged, one-eyed Mutt-Moppet we rescued off the Mississippi River levee in 2008, and whom we have just buried in the garden. Her death came just five weeks after the very expected but no less devastating death of Lovebug, a prissy, five-pound, geriatric Chihuahua who dominated our household.
Over the years we have buried many more beloved pets (Rosie, Creature, Scooters 1 and 2, Curses) while turning others (Boogie, Our Happy Girl, and Lovebug) into household art in decorative urns. Last year we took in Freak Show Fannie from Take Paws Rescue. Along with the fierce 14-year-old Penny Lane, Fannie now comprises our reduced “Brain Trust” of two needy mutts.
We have navigated times of boring drudgery, bouts of white-knuckled petrifying “excitement” and everything in between.
We have both unfailingly displayed our raw, deeply flawed, humanity through it all, if not always our humility.
It has been a trip, one that continues.
I am proud to call you “Partner.” Thank you for the grace over the years, past and to come, for surely, we will need more.
Speaking of which, if I were not working as a poll commissioner for the run-off election to determine who is to be our representative in U.S. House Louisiana District 2 this coming Saturday, there is a decent chance we would end up at Take Paws Rescue’s adoption event to be held at Jefferson Feed & Garden Center (4421 Jefferson Hwy.) from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. While we deeply mourn the recent passing of Lovebug and Poppy, we both share the conviction that if there is room in your home and room in your heart the best way to honor a beloved, deceased pet is to give a loving, forever home to another of the so very many in need.
Do not forget to vote this weekend is you live in Louisiana’s Second Congressional District. This runoff between Karen Carter Peterson and Troy Carter will determine who will represent us in Congress. If you think one person’s vote cannot make a difference just consider Joe Manchin.