Deep East Texas needs animal rescues. Two committed places closed within the past few months and options are few for abused or abandoned animals. Wendi’s Misfits in Lufkin announced its closing recently and is currently placing animals. The founder of another passed away in February and most of her rescues have been re-homed.
My mother Nancy Daniel lived in Nacogdoches, Texas, for 10 years and I joined her for the last five. On a secluded property in Central Heights, dozens of dogs, birds, horses and even a few funny donkeys spent time on the property. Each animal came and gradually became part of our pack.
My mother has been rescuing all of our lives. Losing Mom took the wind out of our sails. We drag through so many days under the fog of grief. Nothing was as gut-wrenching as watching the Misfits follow Mom in the hearse when the coroner came for her that late February morning.
My mother had the ideas and I executed them. At one point, we had 20 rescues running through our camp and it felt like a zoo. Placing seven brought us down to 13. After losing Lexi, Riley and Winston, there were ten of us surrounding her during her final days.
Her talking African Gray had been in a large, rolling cage next to Mom for 25 years. Buzzie spoke in her voice exactly (right down to the smoker’s cough.) When his new parents came for her, I held it in until they got him loaded and stepped inside and fell to the floor.
Soon, all 10 will be in new homes. I am the one that is not settled. My heart has absorbed so many losses so fast, it is almost numb. I can barely feel or eat. But, quitting is not an option. My story will turn. It has too. For now, I lift my spirits at a place called Oak Manor care facility on Ferguson Street. The residents are my soul mates at this point.
It is clear that the final pieces of the new design haven’t fallen into place yet. And, they won’t until the time is right for success. That’s the law of the universe. The past five years have been an education in rescuing, I’m ready to graduate with a ‘Masters in Misfit Care.’
A safe, secluded property with a livable structure is needed for the next version of Misfit Island. Kennels to separate sick or weak animals, a fund for vet costs and enough room for everyone to breathe need to be arranged.
Writing and rescuing may one day be expanded to include foster parenting. Kids and animals are a good combination if property monitored. So many goals and dreams. I believe it will come together.