Friday, June 24, 2011

Alas, another friend is gone

It has taken me a few days to be able to write this up. I am very sad to say my dog Tigger died on Tuesday morning.

She had been sick for about six months and in March she was diagnosed with an enlarged heart and had fluid in her lungs. She never really got better. The fluid and coughing came and went. It began about a week ago and then seemed to get much better and then it hit hard on Sunday. I gave her medication but on Monday morning there was pink spots all over the floor that she had coughed up. We went to the vet and they did xrays and she said it was heavy fluid in the lungs. And actually, I had to go to work, but my wonderful friend and neighbor took her to vets. Carrying her in so she didn't have to walk.

They put her on an IV with meds and said she would stay overnight. On Tuesday morning I saw her and she couldn't walk and breathe at the same time. I held her and she snuffled her head into my chest. I cried because I knew she was doing this to get my scent. She had been in this strange place with strange stuff going on and I wasn't around. I held like that for awhile and knew I had to make that decision that no one wants to make.

The vet said that she could stay another night and maybe be able to go home, but the problem would be back in a couple weeks or a month. I decided to end the pain she was in and not keep her in pain for my selfishness of wanting her around.

It has been 5 years now with a loved one dying each year during the summer months. Jim in May 2007, my Dad in July 2008, Mercury in August 2009, Figaro in August 2010 and now Tigger in June 2011.

All my pets were old - Mercury was 10, Figaro our cat was 19 and Tigger was 13 1/2.

I am glad that I was able to give them happier lives then they had before Jim and I. All three were rescues, and all with different rescue stories.

It is very quiet in the house now. And I did that thing that happens when you lose someone. It takes a while to register. At 11pm, after sitting on the couch watching tv for a bit, my unconscious mind last night asked Tigger if she was ready to go out for a walk. I stopped and shook my head. We always went for late night walks.

I will hold the memory of one we went on just a couple weeks ago. After days and days of heat and humidity, it suddenly cooled down for a couple days. We went out for our midnight walk and there was a bright moon in the sky and I lay down in the park grass and she lay down beside me and escaped the city life for a moment and pretended we were back in our large yard all those years ago when we first got her.

Rest in Peace Tigger my friend.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Helping others by what you have gone through

I was sent back down memory lane last night at the grocery store. I was cruising the cereal aisle and saw this woman standing there and crying. I looked around and didn't see any small kids or any real reason and then I saw her clutching the box of Cheerios. I knew. I went over to her and asked if I could give her a hug. Not "what was wrong" but just "hi, can I give you a hug" and she look startled and I opened my arms and gave her a hug. She cried some more and I patted her on the back.

She told me what I had suspected. The Cheerios were her son's favorite breakfast food and he was killed three weeks ago. She said she was okay at the store till she hit this aisle and knew she would never buy them for him again. Her son was in the military and killed overseas.

I told her about my experience with the ice cream aisle and my husband's passing. How I stood there with my head leaning against the cold glass and crying because I knew I could never eat this certain kind again without thinking of Jim. And how all I wanted to do was eat it with him.

She told me thank you and gave me a hug back. We went out seperate ways and I never did learn her name or her mine. But, for one moment, I was able to give her a little comfort and understanding in the walk thru the grief process.