I wish that when I go a couple or few weeks without posting it meant Batman and I were out doing some amazingly fun things and having wonderful adventures. Unfortunately that hasn’t been the case. Last time it was a camper fire and all the issues that came with that, and boy would I give anything to go back to those days and those problems.
We lost Charlie last Friday. Easily the hardest decision I have ever made. After battling inoperable cancer on her spleen for the last month, she had stopped eating all together and would barely get out of bed. For days, once we got the initial diagnoses I cried every time I looked at her. Other than being a little more picky about when and what she would eat, she was fine. She was still being her bouncy self with the fitting amount of energy for a pup of about 15 years old. But she slowly started losing weight and becoming less bouncy. The vet had told us her spleen probably would burst at some point, and BJ began researching exactly what that meant and what the signs would be. I’ll spare you the details of what he learned would be the result of a spleen rupture, but her belly started to bloat and we knew it wouldn’t be long and couldn’t and wouldn’t put her through that. So we knew the right thing for her was to give her the best 24 hours with extra love, treats (when she would eat them) and whatever else she wanted. I think I cried the entire time and just couldn’t stop hugging her and telling her how much we’d miss her and just how much she meant to our family and how stupid I think this cancer is and how much she didn’t deserve any of this.
Knowing it was the right thing to do didn’t make it any easier to comprehend and ultimately do. But we were with her until the end. Something I wasn’t sure I’d be able to handle, but I think in the end, it gave me peace knowing she was never scared or alone and we were there holding her and telling her how much we love her the whole time.
She was a one of kind, a two time rescue with the kindest heart there ever was, adorable ears that would perk up in curiosity and a fluffy tail (the part chow in her) that when it stopped wagging a few days prior to the end, was the most unbearable sign of what this cancer had done to her and how she was no longer living a happy life.
Oz and Penny have been held a little longer and tighter lately and they don’t seem to mind as much as they once did, sensing something’s not right. The love all dogs give their humans, that unconditional love is what makes losing them so incredibly hard. Their little individual personalities, knowing what they’re about to do before they do it, knowing their favorite snoozing spots, what it takes to make bath time tolerable, and the hardest thing since, anticipating their wiggly rumps, pup smile and kisses when you get home because they have missed you all day, and you them.
We’ll be grieving forever. You don’t lose one like Chuck (one of her nicknames along with Chuckaoo, Chuckles, Chuckette, Charlie Girl and many others) without a broken heart that will never truly be mended. I hate that this cancer and her passing and the pain I felt, made me wish I never had any of them. It’s a horrible thought, but at that moment I just couldn’t imagine making that decision ever again in my life. But having Oz and Penn curl up in my lap to comfort me after we got home from the vet and I was crying so hard my whole body was shaking, reminded me that I also can’t imagine living without the incredible love I feel for them and how much joy they bring me every day and how full my heart gets when just thinking about them. I’m not sure saying it’s all “worth it” is right, but with great love comes intolerable pain.
“Grief is the price we pay for love.”
–Queen Elizabeth II