Whether you experience death through a prognosis or it tragically happens unexpectedly, it’s a part of life that no one likes to think about (much less deal with). Unfortunately, it can’t be avoided. I have been very fortunate to have only lost a handful of loved ones over the course of my thirty or so years of life, both people and fur babies.
Losing a person is no comparison, or is it? Our pets are much like little people. Although they can not talk to us, they are very much a part of our families. They are so intertwined in our lives that our daily routines often revolve around their schedules. Our dogs went outside morning, noon and night. There were many occasions we had to leave a friend’s house earlier than expected to care for our pets.
We recently said goodbye to our last living fur baby, Monet. Just two years prior we made the difficult decision of putting her father, Rusti, down. Though that experience was incredibly painful, he was suffering immensely. Often times owners selfishly hold on. It’s difficult not only letting go, but coming to terms with “When?”. I still struggle with that decision, but I find comfort in knowing he is no longer in pain.
Monet had been experiencing the occasional ups and downs you’d come to expect with a 13 year old dog. She did, however, surprise us with her untimely and abrupt death. Though her health has been declining for six months or so she rapidly deteriorated in two days time. What I thought was merely a bad day, turned out to be her last.
It has been harder with “Mo Mo” – for me at least. Our bond was exceptionally strong. She was my shadow and would follow me pretty much everywhere, even bathroom trips.
Nevertheless, I have been struggling pretty hard with this loss. I have to blog to channel those feelings. It has been months since I have written, but I have chosen to dedicate a blog post to her (and Rusti’s memory also).
These words are for my sweet fur babies, May they Rest In Peace.
My dearest Mo,
The year is 2007. I had never planned on getting you. It was supposed to be a business arrangement. I provided the stud, Rusti, and I was to receive a fee. I was a college student. I needed the money.
Then my best friend, mailed me the photos of the puppies. Yes – this was before Facebook. I instantly fell in love with a little black and white puppy, your sister, with a heart-shaped marking on her head.
Once the puppies were ready to leave their mother, I took a trip up to North Carolina to see the puppies and get my fee.
God had other plans.
I looked around at all the little puppies and there was one, you, almost a twin to the one I originally had my heart set on.
You were the runt.
You didn’t even look real.
The other puppies pushed you aside, but you came over to me. You followed me around. I instantly knew that you were the one for me. Your big brown eyes and tiny little body. I can still smell your baby powder puppy breath. Why does puppy breath smell so good?
A few months later I celebrated my college graduation receiving my Bachelors of Arts Degree. Most fitting I decided to name you Monet, after the famous artist. There you were all of maybe 4 inches and 1-2lbs walking around at my party celebrating with me. You were never far from my reach.
We went on to celebrate so many happy times together.
We took you on every trip – with the exception of St. Croix (because we flew) and the weekend of December 2007, when we got engaged.
You slept with us.
Cuddled with us.
The bond we shared was one in a million.
You were loved. So so much.
Just a few of our vacations:
Disney – not once, but twice
And many, many car trips.
You were with me through college graduation, my first full time job, moving four times, marriage, both pregnancies and the births of my children.
Such Happy times.
The day you left us I knew you didn’t feel well. I could see the light in your eyes slowly diminishing. I guess hind sight is 20/20. I was in denial. I still am.
Thank you for leaving on your own time. I knew in my heart I wouldn’t be able to do it for you. Thank you for being mans best friend. My best friend.
I hope you and Rusti are frolicking in the lushest fields of green grass: Youthful, Happy, Healthy, and Eating all the treats your little tummies can hold.
I love you. Forever.
Grief looks different for everyone, but the silver lining is that you aren’t alone in the experience of it. Whatever stage of the grieving process you’re in, there are people all around you who have been through tough times too. I hope they have offered their own wisdoms to help you feel less alone. We are all dealing with something.