Tuesday, April 18, 2006


Oh what a night.

You know there is absolutely no way to be prepared for life. Even when we think we are prepared, really we are not. Not that there's anything wrong with trying to be prepared, but we cannot absolutely succeed.

Last night was rough, bitter kind of rough. Renn and I prepared a Family Home Evening about keeping a house of order (it's difficult for Mr. Renn who grew up in an OCD-clean house to adjust to living with a bunch of teenage slobs.... but I'll save that for later.) Everyone, even the Disaster was present and reasonably pleasant. We were gathered around the kitchen in a post-FHE dessert eating linger-longer when my dad chose the most unusual moment to break some ice.

At a most unanticipateable moment, he informed everyone (mostly my little sister and me) that it was time to let our 15 year old puppy, Skittles, "go." He's certainly got the authority to gauge such a decision, he's been a veterinarian for a long while now. And I'm no dummy, I can tell she's in a swift decline. She's blind as a bat, mostly deaf, increasingly incontinent, and her joints get stiffer every day. .. and that's just the parts I'm bright enough to observe. According to my dad there's been a big difference in her bowel movements just in the last two weeks, indicating all kinds of nasty uncomfortable stuff.

So, this news that's been more or less expected for the last four years has finally come. You'd think we'd be at least remotely prepared for it, no? No. Not a chance. Emily cried herself to sleep last night, cried herself awake this morning, cried in the shower, cried while doing her hair, cried most of the way to work.

First, you must understand that I and most of my family are animal lovers. Fondness of at least the juvenile fiction level ala Old Yeller, Where the Red Fern Grows, etc. To us our puppies are family members on many levels. Second of all, we just lost a dog in October in an accident, and haven't entirely recovered from that trauma. Third of all, for me - and this is cheesy as all get-out and I don't care, Skittles has been on innumberable occasions, my first rock and confidant. I'm not sure I would have survived being a teenager without her. She may be entirely oblivious to this, but my emotional attachment is still there. I feel like I owe her something. And she has always had a delightful temperament for a dog. How many puppies cooperate when being man-handled by toddlers, forced to play dress up, etc.?

So myself and all of my siblings are train wrecks today. We will be all week. The plan is to put her down on Friday and spend the weekend mopping ourselves up off the floor.

Rats, now I'm crying at work - - so embarrassing.

Why do I have to deal with this in a pregnant, hormonal state? Why Why Why?


hairyshoefairy said...

That is so sad! It's like losing a family memeber. Why? Why must you endure all this upheaval in your pregnant state? I'm sorry.

Em said...

I'm very confident that dogs go to heaven... especially good dogs. But that still seems like a long leave of absence from a very dear friend. And somehow knowing in advance, while I'm grateful for the chance to say goodbye, is even harder.

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