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2017 WENDY CORREEN SMITH. Powered by Blogger.


Saying Good-bye to My Mrs.

I'll never forget the night I went to see the movie Marley & Me. I had never in my life been in a room full of strangers that were all crying & sobbing like I did that night. There was an older man that sat next to me & his sadness as he watched the movie poured out of him like I'd never seen before. Dogs are family members.

My little furbaby Mrs. was by my side through all of my adult life. I got her when I was 22 years old, and for 14 years she was the one that was with me through the thick & thin. She was the one that kept my heart warm & hopeful through a painful divorce, the loss of my grandma, surgery for endometriosis, and then she was literally by my side during the injections of IVF. She wrapped herself around my pregnant belly even when her space on my legs got smaller by the day. She brought me comfort by simply being a ball of furry unconditional love. She was my baby. I longed to be a mom for so long & she was the one that kept my arms full, busy, and warm, as I waited.

When I think of HOME, she is it. Opening the front door for packages or guests always involved loud barking & an excited girl. Now when I go to open the door it'll be silent. When I come home & open the garage I'd always hear her crying for me to come in. Now I'll come home to peace & quiet. When I was in the bathroom doing my hair she'd be down below. Now I'll always be looking for her little wagging tail. Her favorite water bowl was in the master bathroom & often times she'd be thirsty as I showered. She'd lay on the floor waiting for me to get out. No longer will I find her waiting for me. Her favorite place to be was cuddled in bed with me. Her spot in the bed is now cold & empty. The sun will now beat on the sofa & she won't be there to dig a comfy spot. When Magnolia drops food down from her high chair, she won't be there to clean it up. Things like pulling hot pans out of the oven will be sad because she won't be there under my feet for me to frantically say "move Mrs.!"

I told Ryan last night that mourning the loss of her is different. It's different because every single thing I did involved her. Even when I wasn't at home I thought I needed to hurry home to her. She was always by my side, always. Now that she is gone I literally feel a huge hole in my heart.

Last winter she had a severe IVDD incident & I thought we were going to lose her then. I sobbed & sobbed & begged for more time. I wanted more than anything for my baby girls to meet. I wanted to see the day that Mrs. could sit under the high chair & eat all the droppings. I believe Mrs. waited her whole life to see me become a human mommy & to live the glory days under a high chair. And she did get that. I am so very grateful I got to see the love our Magnolia had for her too.

My sweet Ry only knew the "old" Mrs., oh but he loved her like he had known her all of her life. She loved him so very much & would always get so excited when I'd say "daddy is home" and when she'd hear the garage door open. They loved to take naps together. When they slept together she'd cuddle up on his pillow, or in his arm,  and towards the end he'd build her a pillow fort to make her feel safe & cozy.  He was very kind with sharing his food with her & she knew that if he was making a plate she better get ready.

Magnolia's third word was DOG & we are pretty sure she had said Mrs. before too. Magnolia had quite a few little games she'd play with her fursister. The thing I'll remember the most was how much Magnolia loved to go into the laundry room & watch her eat. She'd sit behind her & just patiently watch & watch. We think Mrs. enjoyed it too, because we had a game we played with Mrs. She wouldn't ever eat unless there was acknowledgement. She'd like for us to pretend we were going to steal her food so she could growl at us. Magnolia's face would light up with the brightest smile every single time she saw her doggie.

I think my sister & Ryan were both preparing me for the day that I'd have to make the hardest decision of my life. My sister could see what I wasn't able to see, and that was how badly Mrs. was constantly hurting. This sounds terrible, but I think I got used to seeing Mrs. hurting all the time, & I didn't notice her declining health. She was always a little puppy in my eyes, all I could see was her love for me & my love for her.  This last month, in the cold of winter, she was crying in pain more often. She struggled to even walk, and she would often fall on the hard wood floors & bump her head. I'd hear her fall & my heart would just break little by little each time. Her mouth was in bad shape & we'd find blood on the bed linens. She was starting to lose control of her bladder & sometimes struggled to hold in her poop.

This past week was one of the hardest weeks of my life. On Tuesday morning I went to get her out of bed & I barely touched her side before she started running across the bed screaming in pain. It was so sad & scary even Magnolia was crying. Her pain continued on during the week & even the leftover pain medication I had from previous incidents wasn't helping her. She didn't sleep all week long, she would only pace the house. I would go back & forth from taking care of Magnolia during the night & laying with Mrs. on the floor in whatever room she was in. The fact that Mrs. didn't even want to get in bed was the biggest sign that it was getting close to my time to say good-bye.

I knew that this past week was my last with her. I knew I had to let go of my selfish desires to keep her alive forever. I knew somewhere within myself I had to find the bravery to let her go in peace & to take away all the pain she'd been suffering with for so many years. I held her when I could, although it was hard for her to even get comfortable in my arms. I told her how much I loved her over & over again. I gave her a warm bath in the kitchen sink & wrapped her in a towel as we walked around the house waiting for her fur to dry. I sniffed her hair & did all I could to make sure I would always remember the way she smelled. On Friday, I told her it was time to go to Heaven & to see my grandparents & my first chihuahua Juniper. The look in her eyes was loving & sad, all in one. She knew, she knew she couldn't handle the pain any longer. Although I do know she would have kept on fighting had I wanted her too, I just could not see hurting anymore.

This photo was the first nap we had together after Magnolia was born. 

Now I'm at this point of grief where I feel guilt. I feel guilt for letting her hurt in her old age, but then I feel guilt for making the decision to have her put down. I dread having to put her things away & I dread being at home without her. Going to bed last night without her was probably the hardest. I woke up many times feeling my heart aching & knots in my stomach. Every little thing I do now & for the weeks ahead will feel so different without her. Just removing the "do not ring the door bell sign" from the door bell is going to hurt so bad.

To end on a happy note I have to think about all the good memories I had with her. For many years Mrs. would crawl under my shirt & cuddle on my belly. I'd walk around the house looking like I was pregnant with a tail hanging out below. When I turned 30 my co-workers put a photo of Mrs. & me on a billboard. She was a famous chihuahua for one day. She wasn't the type of dog that wanted to go for walks, however I did wear a sling & carry her around like a baby for many years. She wore the finest clothes from a doggy boutique, accessorized with diamond necklaces, & vanilla perfume. She went on road trips & we had spa days at home. She ate ice cream cones & freshly baked cookies. She always slept in bed with her humans & was the best cuddle bug I've ever known. She got to feel her sister kicking her before she was even born. She even has a hashtag on Instagram #mrspb. My list of happy memories could go on forever & ever, because I was the luckiest of fur moms to have picked her out of the palm of her breeder's hand one spring night.

She was laid to rest in a wooden coffin box that my brother-in-law made. In the coffin are her blankets & a few photos & notes that I wanted to keep with her. We buried her on his land with the other fur babies that have crossed the rainbow bridge. I sent a photo of the coffin to my sisters and they noticed something I hadn't noticed. On the top of the coffin, the wood had formed what looks just like a watercoloring of a dried rose. The crazy part of it all is that we have roses in our house right now & I kept thinking I should have brought roses to the land before we buried her. I didn't though, and as my sister said "there is a rose on her coffin that will remain forever."

I just hope that right now she is cuddled on the lap of my grandma or grandpa, and that she is eating all the best of treats, and feeling the warmth of sunshine. I hope she isn't causing too much ruckus barking at all the angels, although she probably is!

Now I understand the meaning of a man's best friend.

The Last Battle 
If it should be that I grow frail and weak
And pain should keep me from my sleep,
Then will you do what must be done,
For this -- the last battle -- can't be won.
You will be sad I understand,
But don't let grief then stay your hand,
For on this day, more than the rest,
Your love and friendship must stand the test.
We have had so many happy years,
You wouldn't want me to suffer so.
When the time comes, please, let me go.
Take me to where to my needs they'll tend,
Only, stay with me till the end
And hold me firm and speak to me
Until my eyes no longer see.
I know in time you will agree
It is a kindness you do to me.
Although my tail its last has waved,
From pain and suffering I have been saved.
Don't grieve that it must be you
Who has to decide this thing to do;
We've been so close -- we two -- these years,
Don't let your heart hold any tears.

-- Unknown
With love & tears xo
Wendy Correen Smith
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