Day 3 – Guilt Fades

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Honey. Early 2016. On one of our many road trips together. She had a memory foam mattress stretched fully out for her comfort! 

 

Five hours into the third day. Of course I spent the first half of the day crying. I have never wailed like this in my life. Not my adult life anyway. I do remember crying like that as a child. I guess as we lose our innocence and our connection to our original spirit self that we are born with and carry for the first few years of childhood, we become acutely aware of the sounds that our pain and the utterances of our crying make, and we learn that such noises are not desirable and should be stifled.

But I’m a different person now – spiritually. Something moves in me and nudges me to let my mourning be raw and loud. Since Lauren lives with me, I try to keep it down when she’s home at night, but during the day while she’s at work, I have not denied myself even one pang of vocal lamentation. I’ve just let my moans fall freely throughout the house. Regardless of what it sounds like. There’s no judgment. I think there’s something very cathartic about doing so. Very healing.

As I walked tonight, a routine Honey and I shared nightly and which I have chosen not to give up, I thought about Honey the entire time. And of course the feelings of guilt started to flood me. I kept seeing the euthanasia over and over in my head. It wasn’t dramatic in  itself, but because of the emotions that erupt from it.

But I had spent just a couple hours prior to that looking through all my photos of Honey. What I discovered, by having seen photos of her in her healthier days just 4 years ago, was that in her last days she had severe imitations for a dog and she was in constant pain every single day. She couldn’t lift her backside to flip positions while lying down, so she would lift with her front and just throw herself down. Her back legs would often (almost always) be trapped awkwardly underneath her big torso. It had to be terriblbly painful for her. I fed her constant pain pills, so that helped. But I could tell at the end that they were not enough.

My point is that I think I am finally convinced that I made the right decision to send her to her final resting place. Where she is indeed resting now. Without pain. In the end, I think she was existing day to day just to please me. Everything she did was to please me. It was my turn to do the ultimate grand gesture and please her.

 

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2 thoughts on “Day 3 – Guilt Fades

  1. I just read all your recent blogs about Honey and I wanted you to know that I totally get it. The level of sobbing. The questioning. The understanding. The continued sobbing. I had to make the decision to euthanize my 10 year old Lab-retriever mix just 4 1/2 months ago and the level of grief was beyond what I ever envisioned. Bumpus wasn’t the first I had to say goodbye to this way. I had a Lab-Weimaraner mix that I finally chose to euthanize at the age of 16 1/2 years old. Poor baby had been in pain for much longer than he needed to be. Then just a year later my 5 1/2 year old chocolate lab had cancer ravage his body and we chose to put him down as well. It had been almost ten years that I had to say goodbye to one of my furry loves and it hit so hard. Maybe it was partly due to also having lost my mom a year and half prior and how he was such a huge part of my life as I went through a divorce and my mom’s battle with Alzheimer’s and her eventual death. Whatever the case, I sobbed deeply for weeks when my son wasn’t around to hear. I have another dog and she too was in deep grief. Neither of us is the same but I do know making the decision to help relieve him from his pain at the end was the right one to make. It was a gift of compassion. Knowing you and others travel a similar path and feel so deeply makes me feel less alone. Thank you for sharing.

    • Oh my goodness, KJ. I am so sorry for the overabundance of grief you have had to bear. I can’t even imagine. If I had to multiply what I’m going through right now with just one dog to cover another pet and a family member, I might be drinking a lot more wine than I am! Sorry, I didn’t mean to make it a joke, but we kind of have to, don’t we. It’s a survival technique. I would love to share stories with you if you’re up to it. Just send me a friend request at Jeanie Boyd Correa (you’ll know it’s me by the pic of Honey in my profile!). Take care and hang in there! ❤

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