Saturday, June 20, 2009

The Final Chapter..


When I said I felt as though God had turned His face away from me, I meant it from the bottom of my heart. I did not mean it out of hatred or anger towards God, only that I felt as though, with all that is going on in my life right now, that there could not have been a worse time to lose such a beloved pet. A pet that lived with us, at times - traveled with us, and kept us in good company when we were not feeling well. Only last week, she opted to stay outside in the heat and lay under the lounge chair Don had fallen asleep in to watch over him, instead of coming inside the air conditioned house when I called her. When God said No to healing her, I found it cruel, could find no reasoning in it and felt no comfort from Him for days.

It was not until I scrolled down on my own blog that God spoke to me. In the side bar I have Daily Snippets From the Word. Something I admit to ignoring lately because of what I found to be a small selection of Bible verses that were repeated too often. On that day, when I found myself so isolated, so sore and tired, I read,
"He will yet fill your mouth with laughter and your lips with shouts of joy." Job 8:21...
a verse I had never seen before on that side bar. I immediately felt His touch. I knew that He was not telling me Chrissy would be healed, but I knew He was there.

*******

When I received the call from the vet at the office, I spent most of the day crying. I had my chair scooted all the way up with my head pointed toward the corner of my cubical so few if any knew I was crying. Only the people who called in, could sense something was wrong by a crack or pitch in my voice. I just kept things to the business at hand and made it though one of the longest days of my life.

At 3, I left and made the 68 minute journey to the vets office in Navasota. I drove carefully. Floods of tears came following a thought or a memory. I no longer pleaded with God. Just before getting there, I called Don at work to tell him I was about to go in. He told me he loved me and we cried together. When I arrived at the office, the staff handed me the final bill and said it was already processed. That was a relief as I thought they just used my credit card to process the new charges. What I found out later is that my dear sweet daughter Joy, had called them and paid for this portion of the bill herself over the phone.

I walked to the back with Chrissy's blanket in my arms. Her crate door was open and one of the techs was cleaning her up. My eyes feel onto her broken body and I knew. She was so much worse than she was from the last time I saw her. The vet had gently told me that she was stiff on her left side. What I found were legs tightly contracted up to her body. She was asleep, but far from peaceful. She was laboring to breathe and her left side was still ticking and twitching. I leaned down into her crate and kissed her face. I breathed in her scent and whispered to her, telling her what a good dog she was and how much I loved her.

When the vet came in I said,
"It is time. Lets put her down."
He got the injection and as he pushed it into her IV, I again put my head down by her face and kissed her nose. She took 6 more breaths. The twitching stopped along with her heart. Her legs relaxed as the doctor checked to make sure she was gone. I knew. Just as quick as that, it was over.

I wrapped her up in her blanket and cradled her into my arms. I carried her out to the truck and with the techs help laid her into the front seat.
"Please thank everyone for caring for her the way you did. It means the world to me." I told her before she returned to the office.

I got into the truck and turned it on. I sat there for a moment staring ahead. My right hand was on Chrissy's neck. I turned to her and said,
"Let's go home girl." I felt a sigh of relief.

Pulling into our driveway, I saw Joy's car. I knew she was going to be there, but what I had not expected was that she had had one of her friends come over and help dig a large hole under the huge tree Chrissy had so often laid under. It was perfect. Joy ran into the house and got Chrissy's bed. A bed that was actually 1 size too small for Chrissy, but I won it along with a huge assortment of other dog luxuries in a raffle at work. The minute I laid it down - Chrissy knew it was hers and she would contort her body this way and that ...and fall peacefully asleep in it almost every day.

We placed the bed down into the hole. With Joy's help, I took Chrissy's now relaxed body and laid her into her bed. She was curled up just as though she was asleep and she looked beautiful. I drew a tremendous amount of comfort from this. Leaning down, I kissed her one last time. I spread her blanket carefully over the top of her and tucked it down the sides of her bed before we stared to replace the dirt.

When we were done, Joy and I walked upstairs. I was exhausted. All I wanted to do was crawl into bed and watch movies.
"What a crappy time to have given up drinking wine." I said to Joy. "If there was ever a time I wanted a glass - it is now!"

I will be posting some "Chrissy stories" in the future.

35 comments:

Pearls To Hide My Neck said...

Just cried for you. Glad your daughter was there to help.

common ground said...

Bless your broken heart. my tears have been for you. I went through this same thing a year ago with my white cat. Unexpected...broken... hurt and deep grief. my feelings were the same as yours, it still hurts.
praying for you and Don, Debra

Cathy said...

{{Julie and Family}}

I am so sorry that this happened. My heart breaks for you..

{{Big Hugs}}

Cathy

Bee said...

I feel like I could use a glass of that wine right now.

Bless sweet Joy's heart. I was already crying from just reading the title, but her actions pused me right into sobs. I'll be thinking about you.

Nina Diane said...

I have cried for you Julie. I'm so sorry...it's not easy. I guess everyone goes through this at some point because our precious doggies do not have the same life span as us. But it's never, ever easy. I'm sorry...hugs to you and Don.

Anonymous said...

I am so sorry to hear that you lost your companion and child (they do become like children to us). It really is heart wrenching to lose them. I can relate to your story, as we lost our Sebastian about a year and a half ago. (He also began to have seizures.) Needless to say tears ran off and on for a couple of weeks and life seemed to stop for awhile. Please take comfort in the fact that God allowed you 12 wonderful years to love and adore your dog. You know in doggie years she was about 84 years old. She lived a good, long life for a dog. You will be in my thoughts and prayers.

Dianne said...

You are in my thoughts and prayers. I hope all you are left with is the joy of having her and none of the sorrow of this past week.

Gayla said...

Very sad post. I bawled all the way through it from the time I read the title of the post... I'm so sorry... Thank goodness for your daughter and friend. That helped so much. Hugs to you and Don....

Brenda Eason said...

Im so sorry. I truly feel your pain,but I have not got the relief.In the past few months I have lost my mom and have yet to stop crying,had an accident in a store and have been not able to walk and get around.The day I left to go to Texas for my sons wedding My sweet Jersey got killed .The one we bought when Rian went to Iraq. With Rian away he was all I felt love from,on the way to the wedding we had a head on collision. I have had one hard time. I beg God to show me what i've done wrong to deserve such pain.I feel I can't go on.
Im so sorry about your sweet baby.

RiverBend Farm said...

Oh, Julie, I'm so sorry for all that you're having to endure right now. You are so blessed to have such a caring daughter in Joy. I'm glad she was there to help. I wish I could be there to help too. Please know that Chrissy is waiting at Rainbow Bridge for you.

Terry said...

My heart is breaking for you, we had a close call with our yellow lab two weeks ago and thought we were going to lose him. I don't know what we would do if he wouldn't have made it. Again, my heart is breaking for you.

Linda/"Mom" said...

* I'm so sorry, but I "can't" read what you have written. I honestly can't handle it emotionally, and can't read the comments from others, either.

BUT, I don't have to. I know, "instinctively" what has happened, and my heart is just breaking for you and all of your family.

PLEASE KNOW you are in my prayers right now, and will be in my nightly prayers this evening, as will your precious one.

Being a dog lover, I know you have heard of Rainbow Ridge~~~ If by chance you have not, plz google it. It won't make you stop feeling "sick", or keep you from crying or walking around in a tearful daze (experience tells me that), but I think I can guarantee it will provide you some much-needed love, support and "understanding". It has us, several times.

Sending you a warm hug from me AND my family, who so cares about what you are going through right now.

Blessings & warmest hugs to you all on this most very sad day in your lives.

Warmly,
Linda in AZ *

Helen said...

Words are so inadequate at a time like this ... I am thankful you had support of loved ones and a caring vet and his staff. Just continue to celebrate all of the wonderful times you had with Chrissy. Be kind to yourself, Julie.

Kat said...

Oh sweet friend, I'm just so sorry! Your beautifully written tribute was hard to read through my tears. I'm so thankful Joy was there and was so thoughtful. I'm sending up prayers for you and Don.

Hugs!
Kat

Ginger said...

Hi Julie:
My heart is aching for you and Don right now. I couldn't read your post without crying, but I know it was time, Chrissy was suffering it sounded like. It's so hard to lose such a great companion and you did everything for her you could.
What a sweet daughter you have, so caring.

bj said...

Oh...I am so sorry your hearts are breaking....and I wish I had words to help comfort. Please know I am thinking of you...
How is Don feeling? Good, I pray.

Garden Antqs Vintage said...

I am so very sorry, I absolutely know how you feel. My heart is just breaking for you!! I would hug you if I were there. I know at times we don't feel God and sometimes don't understand, but thank God he spoke to you just when you needed him. May he comfort you during this time.

Kaede said...

I am so sorry. When my beloved cat died, it helped to remember the best of times with him and the things we liked to do best together.

Neabear said...

How heart wrenching but at the same time beautiful. So special that you were there with her for the final good bye. Not everyone gets to experience that nor so some want to . Wonderful that your daughter and friend were there for you too. It will take time to heal, just go with the flow and let the tears come when ever they need to.

Hugs, Linnea

Thrifty Miss Priss said...

Julie, I'm so sorry for your loss! I read this on my iphone while waiting for take out..I had to stop...I just couldn't bear to read what was happening. I'm so so sorry for your family.
Robin

Cote de Texas said...

Julie = I am so sorry for your loss. Remember the good times you had together and maybe that will erase the bad times of this week. She looks like the sweetest dog. Feel better, my friend.

Cindy ~ My Romantic Home said...

I have tears running down my cheeks! I am so sorry!!! I can't even imagine how hard this is for you!!! They really become such a part of our families!!!

Alex said...

Julie- I cried just reading your post. I so feel for you & your family. You have a huge heart & much love to give. I'm sure Chrissy knew & felt this every day of her life. I wish you peace.

Susan said...

I am so sorry and crying over your sweet Chrissy. My heart and prayers go out to you and Don. I think Chrissy is running and playing now in Heaven (just like a young healthy dog). Because if animals aren't there I don't want to go either.
Hugs, Susan

Anonymous said...

Julie, I somehow thought if I did not call and ask until I saw you Monday at work ..that Chrissy would have pulled through.. as I type this I can hardly see through my tears , just a dropped of what I know you have shed.. I know how you loved HER .. she was the best!!! She can keep NUNU in line, now they are together... and Joy what a sweetheart ...Thank you Joy for being you..
I love you all and you are in my heart..
Vicki--

pedalpower said...

I'm so sorry Julie. It's such a hard thing to do, but also the most loving when it's time. hugs.

Susan Ramey Cleveland said...

I am so sorry, Julie. God bless you and Chrissy.

for the love of a house said...

"They had buried him under our elm tree, they said- yet this was not totally true. For he really lay buried in my heart."
- My Dog Skip

With heartfelt sympathy for your loss.
joan

SmartAlex said...

Julie,

I'm sorry to hear about Crissy.

sunvalleysally said...

Oh, Julie. There are is little comfort in words but know there is heartfelt empathy for your terrible loss.

It was very brave of you to tell her final story to us. Thank you.

Bunny Rose Cottage said...

OH Julie, I am sitting here in tears crying. My heart is just broken. I cant even stand it! I am so so very sorry. I wish I were there to give you a hug. You gave this sweet beautiful girl so much love and she knew it and loved you so much. She will always be with you. I know that is not any comfort, nothing I could say is of comfort. Our pets are so much more than pets, they are family.
Sending lots of love and hugs to you all,
Amy

vivian said...

sobbing here.. you know that i know... exactly... how you feel. Hugs to you my sweet friend. Your daughter is a gem. and she obviously knows how to take care of her mama! You are beautiful. I love your new hairdo!! I think Chrissy would too!
((((HUGS))))
vivian

Rapunzel said...

Oh, hon, I am so sorry! My heart is breaking for you. Having lost my beloved cat last October, I know how you feel..the heartache is horrible...

Sending you healing thoughts and hugs, dear friend...

xoxoxox

BailiwickDesigns said...

Oh Julie. My heart is breaking along with yours. We almost lost our corgi a few weeks ago, and for a time all I could do was cry. I know how you feel. To lose a beloved pet is impossibly difficult. I pray that soon lots of happy memories will come flooding back, and you'll find yourself smiling at them, instead of weeping. Blessings, Jill

mimi charmante said...

I am so very sorry that you had to go through this. You know, exactly a year ago we lost our boxer to what we think was meningitis - nearly unheard of. It was so sudden and within four days he was gone. It was one of the most emotionally challenging times for our family. I wish you the best as it is a sad time~
xo