Filed under: dogs, family, life | Tags: dogs, family, grandmothers, grief, life, sad
i’m home. home as in “back home.” i came here to say good bye to my grandmother. hard to say this:…. i didn’t get home in time. she passed away at 10 a.m. while i was en route.
as sad as it is, that feeling is mixed with a joy that i had her in my life. don’t get me wrong: i heard the news in the airport when my family met me. and sure, i had a silent movie type melt down.
but i’m o.k.
would be nice if my dogs were here to snuggle and comfort me. especially since it’s so flippin’ cold here. how do you people live in this weather?! how did iiiii ever live in this weather?!
Filed under: animals, cats, pets | Tags: animals, cats, comfort, grief, love, pets, psychic, strange
i have a cat. many of you didn’t know i have a cat. i rarely mention her because she doesn’t have the exciting life that the dogs have. she has no social life, hiding when friends come over. and she sure as hell would never deign to purr for one of them or sit on their lap. she never even sits on my lap. she only purrs when she wants me to get out of bed and put food in her empty food bowl.
her name is spree. she is twelve years old. and last night she did the weirdest and most fascinating thing.
my best friend came over so we could write his wife’s obituary. it’s something you shouldn’t do alone, if you can help it. i was supposed to go over there, but cody bear was so sick. (different story)
so d.s sitting at com central. (com central is a cushy blue chair in my living room that is always within arm’s reach of my desktop pc, my lap top, two cell phones, my home phone and at least one digital camera)
all of a sudden, miss kittypants walks out into the living room. pads by two sleeping dogs and parks it in front of him. she looks up at him and starts purring.
then miss kittypants jumps up on his lap and starts snuggling and headbutting him and nuzzling him like he’s got herring snacks in his pocket and she hasn’t eaten in weeks.
all i could think was….”she knows!”
now, d. handles his stress and emotions well. he’s stoic. he’s calm.
he was just sitting there. talking. seemingly fine. how did she know?
Filed under: friends, life, love | Tags: friends, grief, laughter, life, loss, love
i am a crier. and when i cry, i cry hard. but i am also a laugher. and i laugh every day, whether i’m with someone or by myself.
last night i cried with friends. we said good bye to someone we loved at 11:59. this morning i went to breakfast with my best friend and we discussed his plan for moving ahead without her. she’s been sick for over 16 years, the recent years very sick and needing his care.
we talked about her life, her passing, his future, what the week would look like in regards to funerals, obituary, etc. then he spent over 100 dollars at the book store, got toilet paper at target, then we headed home.
and saw this….
he was on the opposite side of the street, slowling rolling along. i couldn’t get my camera in time, plus he was too far away. and wouldn’t you know it, but d. makes a u-turn and heads back after the intersection so i could get a snap. but the jester had turned left. the intersection was full, but d. managed a quick right, then, a couple blocks up, flipped another u-turn as i said, “you’re a blogger at heart.” right as i leaned out to snap the shot, this funny man smiled and waved.
and d. laughed. loudly.
where’s he going? perhaps to see the king. clearly jesting is not an overly lucrative business, as he doesn’t seem to own a car.
but, he’s doing a good job. i didn’t think i would hear such a great sound today; the sound of laughter. we’ve decided that, in the near future, we may do something random that might make someone who is going through a tough time have a big laugh.
Filed under: friends, life, love | Tags: friends, grief, illness, life, love
a serious post, hence, ….the serious cody bear face:
so, yes, i have been a little maudlin lately. and, sure, i’ve been questioning why we’re here, what’s the point. sensitive bloggers and online friends have noted the change in tone at cody bear’s friends. (you know who you are!)
i won’t lie, much of today’s emotion was happy tears: saying good bye to dubya and hello to a president who somehow manages to say things that make me feel like he understands what is pissing me off in the world today.
but the remainder of the tears?
my friend is dying. she’s been fighting it for years. it’s not my story to tell, but i must mention a couple things.
she is my friend because she is loving, and thoughtful and has never backed down from showing how deeply she feels.
she is the biggest fan of my dog, cody bear. she thinks he’s beautiful. when he runs. when he’s doing tricks. when he’s resting. and he, in turn, has connected with her from day one. resting by her side, protectively. freezing if his paw touches her oxygen line. backing up safely without yanking her line. and she, noticing, being so proud of him for his sensitivity.
my best friend’s wife. he has never left her side and has cared for her without looking away to a life without i.v. lines and years in hospital.
the doctor. who never lost her ability to diagnose ailments even years after being unable to practice medicine because of her illness.
a friend who understood what is important to me, and never ever questioned how whacky those things are. who welcomed those whacky notions.
a gift to everyone who knew her.
and now we just wait. i watch as her family is torn between wanting her to stay and understanding her right to slide away from a life of pain and struggle.
and everytime my phone rings, my nose starts running and my feet go numb before i even know who it is.
Filed under: animals, dogs, life, love, mutts, pets | Tags: animals, death, dogs, grief, love life, pet grief, pet loss, pets
a border chow. the worst thing ever was her dieing. her being sick. the best thing ever was knowing her.
here’s where i am: i’ve gone from crying every day four years ago to thinking of her daily and crying horribly on the big days. her birthday. her adoption day. her day of passing. that’s today, 2004. so four years without a dog who loved me more than anyone else ever has. without someone i loved more than i’ve ever done.
what was she like? she was black with silky fur. and she seemed to read my mind. intuit everything i was thinking. she was the smartest and most beautiful dog i’ve ever known.
she was perfect and familiar. she was home and she was inspiration. she was beautiful and comforting. freakishly smart and somewhat magnetic. she is responsible for many of my friends deciding to get a dog.
she imparted more than just hunger and gratitude. she recognized challenges. wagged when she met the challenges. she knew fear, and empathized with the fearful. she solved problems. sought the ill and went out of her way to comfort them. she found those people fearful of dogs and weasled her way into their hearts.
and she way my dog. and i will never understand why i was so lucky to have her as my baby loki. why i got to share those years with the most special dog.
fortunately i have cody bear and pickles, who somehow knew to be extra cute, extra fun and extra well behaved today!
i wish they had known her.
i love you loki!
Filed under: animals, anthropomorphism, dog, dogs, love, pet loss, pets, photography | Tags: animals, border collies, dogs, grief, pet loss, pet photography, pets, reincarnation, soccer
This is the story of a ball. A bouncy one, the size of tennis ball, designed to look like a soccer ball. It is also a window into two generations of my dogs: Loki, my border chow who died early but fit a few lifetimes worth of joy into her years, and Pickles, my new border collie puppy.
Loki loved playing soccer. A few days a week we would go to the park and she and I would tear it up with her futball. My mother had purchased a mini-super bouncy soccer ball for her one year. Yes, Loki and I played fetch with it, but whenever we went to visit Mom we took the ball with us and the two of them would get up early to play. Mom would kick the ball all morning while Loki fetched it or stomped on it and kicked it back with her paws. Over the years the ball got pretty nasty. Tooth marks, paint missing….skungie. Mom would buy her new balls, but she only wanted that crusty old spitty toothmarked ball.
When Loki got sick she stopped playing. The mini soccer ball was left in the yard while I spent my time keeping her still. It was difficult because she wanted to play, she was getting better, but I had to keep her rested. Months after he diagnosis, and after a severe feeling of recovery, Loki passed away one Sunday. Her indoor toys were put in an area of the living room not packed away. Of her four favorite toys, two were outdoor toys, one stayed in the backyard as a sort of memorial, but the mini soccer ball was forgotten. The ball stopped seeing action in June of ‘04. In late August of ’04 it had lost its dog.
4 years of hot summer sun and harsh monsoon muds passed, covering the ball. It sat under a tree while 4 years of leaves and bark covered it. It lay buried under the crazy, running paws of my Cody Bear at least 4 inches under ground.
Two weeks ago I adopted Pickles. The first couple days she lived with us she was too scared of Cody Bear to leave my side, but soon she started to explore the yard. Every day I would catch her staring at the ground beneath a tree. She would start to dig and I would say stop. She would walk away in search of a beetle. Again and again I found her staring at the patch of dirt. I would walk up to her and look, “what is she seeing?” Nothing.
Today I sat out back eating my lunch and Pickles was staring at her patch of dirt. She started digging but I did not stop her. Soon she produced the ball. She carried it to her secluded part of the yard. She ignored all other toys all afternoon. I eventually took the ball from her, half petrified and misshapen.
How did she know it was there? It certainly couldn’t still smell after all this time. Why did Cody Bear never know it was there?
Filed under: animals, dogs, family, friends, life, love, pet loss, pets, photography | Tags: animals, bereavement, dogs, family, grief, loss, love, pet loss, pets
hi everyone. i hadn’t even finished typing “update” before i started crying. i hate so much to inform you that mindy has passed away. so many of you have kept her in your thoughts and prayers and have offered encouraging words to her family, and for that i know they appreciate it.
she was diagnosed with severe kidney damage due to the chicken strips from costco (which are still on the shelves even though they have harmed many dogs already) over a month ago. initially she was very sick, but she responded well to her holistic treatments, was eating, playing, instigating doggie trouble. i was caught off guard yesterday. i thought she was going to make it.
her family cherished her these past few weeks and her remaining time was actually joyous and full of love and expensive dog treats! and as r says, every day with her was a blessing.
i took this picture several weeks ago,…the day after the e.r. doctors told r and a that she only had a couple days to live and should be euthanized. But within days of her holistic treatments she improved. r and a could just tell she was a fighter and wanted to be here, to stay with her family.
there is nothing like losing a dog. i hate that two people i love are going through this mess of feelings. if it weren’t for our mutual love of dogs, i never would have met these two fun, brilliant and loving people. and i am so honored to be their friend, and honored that they let me participate in their family activities these past few months.
mindy’s pack consisted of r and a, hoju, kodos, barnie and maggie. oh…and blinky, the family chinchilla. blinky was mindy’s little buddy. she spent hours each day laying down outside his cage with her face right next to him. on her last day here, the day she lost her vision, she stared intently into blinky’s cage….even though she couldn’t see him. she wanted to stay with her chinchilla.
one of her favorite activities was waking up and and instigating a growly, howly, barky alarm clock….really early in the morning.
….and she knew she was loved.