Thursday, July 12, 2012

Warning: No funny ahead

Yesterday we left vacation two days early, drove six hours home, unloaded the back of our SUV, loaded our sweet 12 year old German Shepherd into the back, walked into the vet's office with Mr. Ashley carrying her in his arms, sat in a small sterile room, and said goodbye to our friend and family member of 12 years and what feels like a million lifetimes. I kept my hand on her heart until it stopped beating and walked out with no dog and one less personality in our little home.

And then we picked up the kids and drove home with Big Kid sobbing and little kid chattering about getting a new dog or whittling wood in her honor (a prohibited hobby he's been wanting to take up for a week now).

And then we walked into our emptier home and little kid burst into tears and sobbed for an hour, clinging to me and repeating "I miss her" 400 times, while Big Kid researched "Heaven", "Dog Heaven", and "Happy dogs" on wikipedia and google. 

And I sat there and didn't cry, sort of shell shocked and unbelieving, and keeping it together everywhere but the bathroom where I sobbed in short, quiet bursts so as not to get the kids riled up again.

I keep seeing us, from a third person perspective, walking out with no dog. Walking in with our dog and out without her. Or the tableau from the perspective of the loud, annoying lady customer who peered in when the door flashed open, at us sitting on the floor red-eyed and wet-faced with our sleeping but not yet gone friend. I see a tuft of dog hair or think of letting the dogs out and my breath catches in my lungs and I suffocate in sadness for a moment.

I sit and watch cartoons and video games and revisit these images and will myself not to cry as my heart literally aches and my insides squeeze and I just can't believe that happened, I was so tired it feels like maybe it wasn't real. But it was really, really real. And despite my will not to cry, my eyes just seep on their own, my face suddenly warm and wet, it feels like out of nowhere.

It's sad and it sucks. To put it lightly.

Big Kid never wants another pet again so it can't die (this is why little kid has a fish and he doesn't, he's had this theory for a while) and while I was shocked to hear that reasoning at first, I get it right now. It's just so freaking sad.

She was such a good, happy girl, with such a sweet heart, it's not fair her body stopped cooperating before everything else did.

If everyone had a soul like this, we would have world peace:


Vaya con Dios, old friend, and I hope we meet again some day. 

33 comments:

Debbie said...

So sorry to hear this! I had to say good bye to our 12 year old German Shepherd (Elvis) also. It is so sad and I know there are no words to help heal your heart. Thinking of you.

Melanie said...

Oh, honey. I am so horribly sorry for you all. I know you've already thought and been told all the cliche crap, so I will just save it and agree that this suck major ass balls. Losing a pet is not just losing an animal. They are our freaking family and they belong with us for longer than 12 years. I'm really so sorry.

Patience said...

I am so sorry. I lost my precious Bailey aka the pug in February and it was the worst experience of my life. I swore I never wanted another dog, but strangly enough, getting a new Pug healed my broken heart. I still think about Bailey often and I will forever miss him, but time does heal everything. Thinking of you and your family.

JulieStyles said...

I'm so sorry. It is heart breaking to loose a pet.

Melissa said...

I am so very sorry. It's such a raw feeling to lose a pet--truly a member of the family--and sometimes there are just no words.

Lin said...

Aw, I'm so sorry. I know all too well how much it hurts to have to say goodbye to a furry family member.

Caitlin said...

Aw man, I'm so sorry love. I have nothing to say but that your family is in my thoughts and I'm wishing you guys all the best. <3

Sasha said...

Big hugs! Losing a pet is so hard......

Jamie said...

So sorry Ashley! A couple of months ago we did the exact same thing with our 12 year old German Shepard mix. I was relieved that he went so peacefully and we were right beside him the whole time telling him what a good boy he is. However, it doesn't change the fact that it completely sucks. My thoughts are with you all!!

Cosmos said...

I am sorry for your loss, except that statement doesn't begin to convey the emotion behind it.

Your post brought tears to my eyes recalling losing my pets, and the thought of losing dogs close to my heart in the future.

My heart goes out to you and your family.

Celeste said...

I am so so very sorry for your loss. Just thinking of losing my little fur baby brings me to tears, I can't imagine how your heart is breaking.

Anonymous said...

You put into words exactly how I felt when we had to make the same decision over the years for our sweet doggies. I'm so sorry that your family had to go through this pain. My only "silver lining" comment is that this experience shows you that both Big Kid and Little Kid have deep empathy and sympathy for other beings...wonderful traits to carry them through life.

I wish you all only happy memories of your sweet friend.

Sheila from west Michigan

Mom Taxi Julie said...

I've said goodbye to 3 furry friends in the same fashion. It's just heart breaking. ((hugs))

Anonymous said...

Man that sucks. I'm so sorry.

Jessica said...

I'm so sorry.

Cindy * Daisies and Crazies said...

Oh, sweetie! I'm so sorry for you and your family. xo

MTGrace said...

I'm so, so very sorry Ashley! I know all too well the heart-wrenching trip to the vet to have a beloved fur-baby assisted into the next life. They are absolutely a part of our hearts and families and it's so hard to lose them. I have an especially big spot in my hearts for German Shepherds. I lost my sweet Zuki almost 6 years ago, and it still feels raw.

All my love to all of you. She was beautiful!

Preppy Pink Crocodile said...

Oh I am so sorry! I very much know that pain fist hand. My heart still breaks after many years. Time heals nothing but it does get easier.

KK

Anonymous said...

I am so very sorry. They really do become family members, don't they? I still cry I think of all the wonderful memories I had with Pru. After she died, I swore I would never get another pet, for the same reason as Big Kid mentioned. However, I did eventually adopt Molly, and at first I felt guilty for having fun with her. Now I realize that I am actually honoring Pru by carrying on the adoption tradition. In this world that can be so hard and so heartless, your family and your dog were so lucky to have each other.

Unknown said...

This is a bit of a milestone, I joined you right about the time Heide Louise died and it just broke my heart. We had been through the death of our sweet dog and I could never express the feelings of loss as well as you. I am so sorry about about you dear friend, so so sorry.

binajabber said...

so sorry to read this...

A.D. said...

I'm so so sorry. Losing pets is one of the most painful things. In my experience, the pain never quite goes away, but it does get easier getting through the day as time passes. My thoughts are with you and your family.

ashley said...

I am so sorry to hear that! I am however, happy to hear that you had a good 12 years.

Anonymous said...

So sorry to hear this...it's heartbreaking. Hang in there!

Anonymous said...

So sorry! I cried for weeks over my 13 1/2 year old dachshund. I eventually planted a beautiful rose bush in my yard. I still call it my "Snoopy" rose. There is a wonderful kids book about losing a pet but I can't think of the name of it right now. You might consider letting your son who is struggling so much make a donation to a local pet shelter in memory of your beloved pet. It can be food, old blankets, dog toys, food dishes or just a little cash. It would make a difference in the life of a homeless pet. I am so sorry you are hurting.

Anonymous said...

So very sorry :(

Renee said...

I'm sorry. :( So, so sorry. This sucks. We put our lab (Cabby) down almost a year ago. All 6 of us were there, in that sterile room.. so sad. :( It sucks. It just sucks. Big hug.

Renee

Claire said...

I'm so sorry to hear about your dog aka family member. It is so hard to lose a pet and I am hurting for you.

Jesse said...

I am so sorry. I have lost a dog too, and its not fair or right. Just think of the good times you had with her. So sorry.

Erica said...

I'm so very sorry for your loss. Many hugs from Boston.

Rachel said...

Got behind on reading blogs while out of town and I am so sorry to come back to this. Losing a pet is so painful and I am sending happy thoughts and hugs to you and your family.

Anonymous said...

I am so sorry! I know that is hard. Happy thoughts and hugs for you and your family.

Ashley said...

Thank you so much for your thoughts, comments and support, everyone, it really does help during hard times.