Wednesday, October 31, 2012
Goodbye is never easy
Many of you know about our dog Buddy's struggle with kidney failure in the last few months. At the beginning of July, our vet told us that he was far along in the process and that we only had 3-4 months with him and when he started to get bad, it would be fast. We cherished our days with him, questioning if he was our miracle dog who would live months and months with the disease. He lived for us, for love, for food, for walks.
But maybe 10 days ago, that changed. He stopped eating more than a bite of food here and there. Although he wagged and wagged at the site of his leash and we obliged his wishes, our walks were slow, and short. But they brought him happiness.
By this past weekend, he stopped eating and drinking altogether. Our big fat monster was nothing but skin and bones. He still lived for us, and for our love, but we could tell that was the extent of what he wanted in life.
All we kept questioning was how would we ever say goodbye. Buddy was our monkey. He had 7 homes in his first year of life before finding Tom. His start with Tom was rough, but within a few weeks, his world revolved around Tom, and for those of you that know Tom, his world revolved around Buddy. I was the first person Buddy met that he trusted from the start. We were his world and he was ours.
Each night we'd say a silent prayer that he would say goodbye on his terms so that the decision wouldn't be ours. But he fought. With no food and no water in his system, he refused to give up. That's our boy.
We stopped by the vet on Monday and she told us that we should probably not let him suffer - and it was obvious he was - not eating, kidney toxins running through his body. We had talked about him not eating and drinking and she encouraged us to have one last day with him and bring him in on Tuesday. We braced ourselves... again, how could we chose to end his life?
Buddy helped us make that decision on Monday night. The poor guy had a horrible night, throwing up every 20-30 minutes - he had nothing in his system so where was this coming from? He looked at us all night with eyes asking us to help him. We knew the time was right.
So yesterday morning we did the hardest thing we've ever done... we helped him get to the place he needed to go. It was hard... the hardest thing I've ever done. But we knew that it was the right thing.
I know that he's watching over us and always will. I know that he's running around with the likes of Cider, Bailey, Sammy and all of the other amazing dogs that have gone before him. And I know that we'll meet again. He's not struggling. He gave it his best fight and we love him for that. He touched our lives in so many ways and taught us so many lessons - be it about patience, love, forgiveness, and pure happiness with the simplest things in life.
And while our house may be a little emptier, our hearts are so incredibly filled with love and memories that blessed us with for 11+ years. Rest in peace doodie pants...