Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Jake in the late afternoon golden sun at our beach this past December

* The thoughts, opinions and feelings found on this blog are not necessarily the thoughts, opinions and feelings of it’s writer, me. They are the result of me processing my life, thinking out loud, sometimes just trying thoughts on and testing them out. Thoughts that pertain to a specific time of day (early morning most often) are not necessarily thoughts that stay with me the remainder of the day. Sometimes the feelings seem very exaggerated, sometimes they’re diluted. Sometimes I feel hopelessly optimistic and sometimes those thoughts feel quite bleak and dark. Any one who knows me well, knows that what you see or hear at any given moment is not always what you get. It's most often, just a sliver.

Very deep Sigh. A sleepless worry filled night. Thank goodness for the sputter and gurgle of my coffee maker which automatically comes on at 4:45 and is my signal that it's time to get up. Thank goodness also for CBC radio's overnight service listened to in my bed at midnight and 2am, people chattering away quietly in my room, something to distract my mind from exploding with big bad and negative middle-of-the-night monster thoughts.

Mostly memories of the last few days and nights with my dog Jake and the tremendous guilt I feel now about deciding it was time to say good bye to him not 3 weeks ago. Making the judgment call, with our vet, that he wasn't going to get better, that his quality of life had become forever compromised. I keep thinking, wondering, if, maybe, he might have felt better, the bad spell thing might have past. Maybe if I'd waited ... he could've lived a few more weeks, days, or months. No matter how your intellectually self may come to terms with the decision that you make, I don't think your heart is ever OK with it. It's the worst decision I'll ever make. I know that.

He looks old in this photo today I realize and I didn't mean for the bottom photo to appear so much like a metaphor for a senior canine life - an elderly dog standing, in a somewhat stiffened position, surveying his youthful, stick fetching summer kingdom with the cold icy setting sun of winter as a backdrop.

It's a sad morning this morning, it's one of those days when I wish could crawl back into the nest of down and flannel and disappear completely but I won't, I never do. I know that this feeling will pass, it always does.

And I also know ... it will be back.

Jake - I miss you


  1. Big hug Susan..wish I were closer as I have mentioned before. I could zip over and squeeze you. You would feel like a lemon by now. Poor you... hahahah

    Yep, there will definitely be days like this every so often. They do tend to become fewer, eventually... and if you talk to yourself, (and really try to pull up the logic of it) you will realize that it certainly was time. You made the right decision and none too soon. Sure, poor old Jake might have had some good hours or maybe a day or two here and there..but remember how he couldn't even get outside to pee? you had to carry him Susan... that is just not a good thing. He did not want that. You did right by your best friend... honestly, you did. It is the most difficult thing in the world to be "the one" who has to make the ultimate decision. It seems too much a burden to bear, but, sometimes we just have to do what we dread. If we don't..... well, then our hesitation will cause suffering. Sometimes we have to be stronger than we want to be and that damn well sucks...but we must. Nobody can, or will, do it for us. I, for one, am glad that you finally made it when you did. It would not have been right at all to put Jake through any more days like he was experiencing. In the part of your heart that loves Jake the most....you know that. You do.

    Go back to your comfy quilts for a nap. You hardly got any worthwhile sleep. I know it all too well Susan. Sometimes I clean things like a dynamo for a few hours if I drag my body out and it feels like lead. Then,. plunk back for a half hour to an hour and feel like a different person when I do get vertical again. OKay..not always...but it is usually a needed nap anyway..so who cares? If I feel like going horizontal, I do.

    You will probably be up and down like a bloody yo-yo for months... but.. pet Miss Winnie, she love you too, and the cats, 'specially Ver... go for long walks... fresh air really helps..... .. do a bit of early spring cleaning... just go through the motions of daily life... it is enough to sustain us until we get our bearings again......even if it takes months....

    I know you will be back posting pretty flowers, some of your art work, (waiting to see some of that actually) scenery... and may I just say... the pic of Jake and the setting sun is beautiful. Didn't conjure up for me the same thoughts at all...just a beautiful pic of him in the warmth of the winter sun.. He was probably thinking.. ...aaahhhhhhh feels good, that ol' sun.

  2. oh shistle pot...look at the length of that wouldya? well, I am not apologizing for the length... so there and "bum" as my Mom used to say. LOL>.....

  3. You did the right thing, Susan. You did. Actually, at that point, you owed it to your beloved companion and there was no other decision that would have been as right.
    sending a hug....

  4. I was talking again yesterday with my friend MLou and I was telling her how it seems to me that through the days and weeks leading up the that decision your brain, my brain anyway, goes a bit fuzzy. I believe some chemical kicks in in your brain allowing you to deal with the situation - a failing pet. A pet who's having good days and bad days. You're on alert, watching every move, looking for signs both good and bad.

    When the time comes to say goodbye your still on that cruise control way of thinking. You're concern really is only for them. Then when it's over and you've said your last goodbyes ...your brain goes back to normal and the last month seems like a bad dream. It doesn't feel like I was actually there, everything's numbed and fuzzy. Which is why I believe so much second guessing happens. You are so in the moment those last few days, hours and minutes that you can't remember that you were actually there.

    The thing I thought about and dreaded always - saying goodbye to my love Jake seemed to all happen so fast ... this blog is a great comfort to me, when I go back myself and read through November, December and January ... I did document the pace of it all, it's there in words and pictures on a page and it was gradual ... but it still feels now very sudden.

    I know that many of you were there with us through those all those months ... and I do SO appreciate that you tell me your thought and opinions, and that you send hugs and warmth my way. That you understand what a difficult thing this has been to go through and also what an amazing dog, my sweet Jake was. Is.


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