Monday, September 18, 2006

Goodbye to a beloved friend

Well, I was hoping to come on with an uplifting, happy, update, but the news is not as you or I would have hoped.

On Saturday, we said goodbye to our dear little girl, Holly. She will be terribly missed, but I also know that she is no longer in pain, and is finally with her true Grandfather. He was waiting for her the minute she left us...I know that for sure.

We received a call from the "on call" vet for the weekend on Friday night. They knew that we were leaving Saturday for the beach, and that we wanted to give her treatment over the weekend to see if she would improve. This also meant that if something were to go "wrong", that we wouldn't be able to say our goodbyes and be with her if she had to be put down.

He said that he was 99% sure that he felt a mass near where her liver is, and that he was certain, based on her rising bilirubin levels, that meant liver failure and probably cancer. He gave us the option of referring her to a specialist for more testing and 24/7 monitoring, but he felt sure that even if we could find the cause of her illness, that we were looking at something terminal. Her gums and eyes were beginning to yellow, and she was becoming more and more depressed as the days wore on.

We went in on Saturday morning and spent a good 45 minutes with her before we made the decision.

It's one of the hardest things that I've ever had to do.

I was with her, holding her head, and whispering how much we loved her as she passed on. I sang her the lullaby that I have sung to my boys since the day they were born. I hope it comforted her.

I love her, and I miss her so much.

We decided to have her cremated, and we are going to take her ashes to where my Grandfather and Grandmother are she can be right where she should be, with them.

They did an autopsy, and the vet called us right away to let us know that yes, in fact, it was liver cancer, and that he truly feels that we did what was best for her . He was shocked that she had even made it this far with how "ravaged" her liver was.

I take comfort in this:

Just this side of heaven is a place called Rainbow Bridge.
When an animal dies that has been especially close to someone here,
that pet goes to Rainbow Bridge.
There are meadows and hills for all of our special friends so they can run and play together.
There is plenty of food, water and sunshine,
and our friends are warm and comfortable.
All the animals who had been ill and old are restored to health and vigor.
Those who were hurt or maimed are made whole and strong again,
just as we remember them in our dreams of days and times gone by.
The animals are happy and content,
except for one small thing;
they each miss someone very special to them,
who had to be left behind.
They all run and play together,
but the day comes when one suddenly stops and looks into the distance.
His bright eyes are intent.
His eager body quivers.
Suddenly he begins to run from the group,
flying over the green grass,
his legs carrying him faster and faster.
You have been spotted,
and when you and your special friend finally meet,
you cling together in joyous reunion,
to be parted again.
The happy kisses rain upon your face;
your hands again caress the beloved head,
and you look once more into the trusting eyes of your pet,
so long gone from your life but never absent from your heart.
Then you cross Rainbow Bridge together....

Author unknown
Holly's story is a little different though. I know that my Grandfather was there waiting for walk her over the bridge, and through those green pastures, and I will see them both day soon.


Melissa said...

((HUGS)) Lori, I am sorry to hear about Holly's passing, but I agree that you did the right thing. My thoughts are with you and your family!

andria said...

So sad, I am glad you got to spend some time with her before she passed. Have you seen the book Dog Heaven? I highly recommend it.