Things can easily go from bad to worse.
I broke some bones in my foot, and they continue to not completely heal, which greatly limits my mobility. I thought that was bad, but I had Patsy sitting on the couch across from me as I recovered, and she makes funny expressions, noises and has moments of heightened drama especially if there was a delivery, which entertained me throughout the day.
The right thing to do is also possibly the worst thing to do.
Patsy was having seizures. It would have been inhumane to keep her alive. Enough said.
Life truly does change on a dime.
I have always said that and believe it. I believe life can turn great in just a single moment. I also know how devastatingly sad it can be in a moment. Wednesday night, Patsy was fine as she went to sleep. She had had her treat and was curled up and content. Within the hour, she was seizing. She was dead in less than 48 hours.
It is possible to love a dog more than she really needs or wants you to.
Patsy was indifferent to being pet or paid attention to in anyway. It was kind of a privilege to pet her, because usually she just walked away from you when you tried to pet her.
Playing hard to get is a very effective form of gaining attention
Because Patsy didn’t care if we paid attention to her or not, we gave her so much more attention than we did sweet, quiet, polite Chester.
When you are loved by a curmudgeon or dog that really doesn’t like anyone, you feel really special.
Patsy hardly liked anyone. She truly wanted to bite most people. Being one of the people she loved just made you feel as though you just had an extra dollop of special added to you.
It is possible to cry so hard you think you put a hole in your sinuses.
I get why people try to avoid feeling sadness. Sadness is an incredibly painful emotion, it hurts right down to your soft tissue, bones and organs. This weekend was painful. I will say, on behalf of sadness, it does help to cry. Unexpressed tears fill buckets in our bodies. Carrying those buckets is worse than letting the tears flow. #takeitfromaformerbucketcarrier
Anything at all that distracts you—friends, movies, books, walks, anything at all is like a gift. A half hour of distraction is so wonderful.
Phone calls heal
Talking about your loss helps you process it and makes you feel better. Friends who called really got just how hard this was for us. Talking about other things was also one of those aforementioned distractions. Thank you.
The greatest thing about having two dogs
We had two dogs so they could have each other for company. I can’t tell you how much better it is to walk in the door and see Chester than it is to have no dog at home. That is just a whole other level of awful.
Friends attended a funeral on Saturday of a young man in his 20’s. We will get over Patsy. We will incorporate her memory into our lives and always think, ‘we were lucky to have had her for nearly twelve years.’ Our pets are incredibly wonderful parts of our family, but oh how do those parents who have lost children endure? If only their mourning could be broken up into little pieces so we can each carry part of it for them. It is too heavy a burden for any one person.
There are always reasons to be grateful.
Patsy had four seizures she didn’t even remember. She had a very difficult last 48 hours. We have a 24-hour emergency clinic less than two miles from our home. Thad, who had never come home mid-week from school, was home on Thursday for an interview. Patsy and Thad just loved each other. What a gift that he was home. Patsy wasn’t my dog or Dale’s dog. She was the whole family’s dog. Having Dale, who loved her just as much, right here with me, hurting as bad as I was, reminded me I won the husband lottery. I really did.
There are moments of grace everywhere.
Chester kept licking Patsy’s face in her last hour. He never does that. She never lets him. He did, and she let him. Patsy always had to be muzzled at her vet appointments. She let anyone come near her at this last appointment, no muzzle necessary. She moved away from us and voluntarily went towards the vet and vet tech. She let them put medicine in the port she had in her leg. When they gave her the medicine to just sedate her, she snored really loudly. She also farted. Nobody ever accused Patsy of being a lady.
Dogs are amazingly intuitive
Patsy and Chester knew it was her last day before we did. Their behavior was completely different and was about saying goodbye to each other. Chester is lost without his wife/mother/sister, but he is enjoying all the extra attention.
Christians hear so much about unconditional love – that God loves us NO MATTER WHAT. For some of us, that isn’t very easy to understand. Some of our parents couldn’t display that level of commitment. Love had conditions. I think God thought of the perfect way to illustrate what unconditional love looked and felt like on the day he created dogs. Patsy didn’t love many people, but I sure knew she loved us.