Losing a cherished friend is never easy. Losing a cherished pet is never easy either. When they are one in the same, the loss we feel can be overwhelming to say the least. The last 24 hours of my life has been so painful I haven’t even found the tears to cry over my loss.
Today my family and I had to say goodbye to our fur baby Nick. He was getting up there in years, and last month he started having seizures. He just started slowing down. He was no longer eager to answer the door when we came home. He wasn’t up for playing or chasing toys. His vision started to go. It was hard watching him slowly break down. Yet he still seemed to push on and we were there for him every step of the way.
Last night he could hardly walk or hold his head up. His breathing was labored and his heart kept stuttering. I knew the time was coming. I took out in the front yard and we sat under the stars in the cool autumn night. We just sat in silence as I held him. When he was ready we carefully made our way back inside and curled up on the love seat together. When my mother got home she took him for one last careful stroll down the block and back. He seemed to be so tired as he made his way back to the house. Mom slept with him this morning and we all spent the day saying goodbye one last time. He passed about 5:30. He just went across that glowing rainbow bridge and never looked back.
It’s so odd sitting here in my office as I type this. He isn’t laying under my desk and wagging his tail at me as I ramble out loud to him. He isn’t wandering through the house with his nails clicking on the floor as he looks for one of us to snuggle up to. He didn’t go to the door tonight when Chris came home. I keep looking for him at my office doors and hoping he will join me still, even though I know he never will again.
My daughter keeps asking me why he had to leave us. I wish I could explain in terms that her young mind would understand. He was in so much pain, and he was so lost. He had to let go and move on. He had to cross that rainbow bridge and be free of all the suffering. I try to tell her that he is in a better place now and that he was truly loved in this life. That we were truly blessed to have him in our lives.
The pain is still there. This hollow, aching, emptiness inside my heart and soul where a piece of him always stayed… I know in time the pain will fade. I know in time the emptiness will fill up. I know the hollow feelings will fade. But the scars will be there along with so many others.
To Nick: Loyal and trusting friend and companion. Thank you for all the years of joy and happiness. You will be sorely missed.