Friday, September 06, 2013

Friends of Ours

 Wednesday was a different kind of day for me.. For anyone, really.

 My mom decided that living with her mom was putting a heavy strain on their relationship. They are better off, living on their own and they both know it. So my mom found a nice apartment to rent, a bit closer to my house and she moved in on Wednesday night. I'm incredibly happy for her because this was something she desperately needed to do. She was getting very difficult to be around because of her unhappiness. When I heard that she found a place I felt instant relief. She's been riding on a very positive, cheerful and motivational high ever since my sister visited with her family. I don't know where it came from but all I know is that I don't want it to leave. This new and improved mom is really impressing me and also I find myself wanting to be around her more.

Mom with her grand babies.

 There was a catch to my mom moving out of Gran's house though. She owns two dogs, Audi and Lucy. We've had Audi since I was 15 and Lucy since I was probably 16 or 17. They've been through everything with us; the tragedy, the moving back and fourth that my mom did over the years. Everything. They've been her little sidekicks and I couldn't imagine her without them. Recently we found out that Audi, who is I believe 14 years old is partially blind and deaf. I had no idea, until an Aunt pointed it out and then I tested poor Audi and found it to be true. Lucy has recently developed a shaking problem at night. She wakes up in the middle of the night and shakes for an hour or two. No one knew why and she wouldn't be herself all the next day. The dogs are my mom's little buddies but at the same time, they are very neurotic. Yes, that's right.. Dogs can be neurotic, or at least mom's dogs are. They don't like to be left alone, granted most dogs don't. But they howl wildly until she returns. They are afraid of flies. Yup, that's right.. flies.
 My mom found out that she can't have pets in this apartment or many others that she looked at. I can't take the pups because I already have my hands full with Alina. Gran is getting up there in age, and she isn't as agile as she used to be. In the end, mom had to face a difficult decision. She would have them put down.

 At first I was horrified. My family dogs!! We can't just let them go that easily. Someone has to be able to take them in. Mom talked to the SPCA and found out that they would take them, but that older dogs with anxiety problems would have a bit of a tougher time finding a home. People aren't usually looking for deaf, blind dogs or dogs that are afraid of flies and that can't be left alone. 
 I am sure that this was the hardest decision she's ever had to make. Those dogs are her life and she constantly talked to them and snuggled them on a daily basis. I think she is at a point in her life where a decision this big could really change her life, but in a good way. As much as she loves those girls, they also held her back from doing a lot of things. If there's one thing my mom does not need, it's an excuse. If she has one, she usually uses it to get out of doing anything social. (Except for recently. I'm telling you, she's a changed woman!)

 Audi and I have a very close relationship. It sounds ridiculous, but it's true. She would follow me everywhere when I lived at home. I used to put her in my hoody, zip it up and walk around with her in it, like a kangaroo. To be honest, she still followed me around at mom and grannie's house too. We always had a tight bond because we grew up together. She was there for me during some tough times in my teen years. I would cry and hold her in my arms, listening to sappy music in my bedroom. She was always there for me. So, in Audi's time of need- I decided to see her to the end.
 Lucy was always my step dad Rudi's dog. She was a father's day present for him and those two were very close. She would sit outside the front window around the same time everyday, waiting for his Mazda to putter up to the front yard. She'd see him get out and start whimpering and running around the house in excitement. When he passed away, Lucy was crushed. She didn't understand where he was and continued to sit at the front window until the day we moved to B.C.

 I understand that this post is very controversial. People are going to think that mom just killed the dogs off because she didn't want them anymore. This is honestly not the case. My mom isn't a cruel person. She was in a situation where she had to make a big decision. She didn't feel like it would be a good idea to send them off to the SPCA because they would instantly be separated. Their nerves would most likely get the best of them because again, they were very anxious, nervous puppies. If they did find a home- would it be to a family that would care for them in the right ways? There were just too many questions. Instead mom being a big believer in the after life decided that once she put the puppies down, they would be with their daddy again. Rudi would be waiting for them and they could be with him. I know it sounds like, "Miffy the cat is going to the farm to live with all of the other barn animals. She will be so happy there kids- don't worry!" excuse. I firmly believe that the dogs' little spirits will go be with Rudi's spirit and the will "live on" that way.

 Wednesday. Wednesday at 3:30 was the vet appointment. I met mom there and sat with the dogs in the car before we were waved inside. It's hard to describe the feelings I was having. I felt nervous and dismal at the sight of them. They weren't really excited or afraid in the car, which helped me. Once we carried them into the vet's office, they became shaky and afraid. They never liked going to the vet because it always meant they were getting a thermometer in the bum or a needle of some kind. We sat and listened to the procedure from the vet. The entire process was well done. The dogs were sedated to ease their anxiety and to have them relax. I felt like once they were sedated, I was too. A cloud of calm came over me and that was a tremendous relief. I kept my sunglasses on because I felt a sense of guilt when we first came. I was almost ashamed.. After a bit, the vet and her assistant assured us in their gentle, friendly manner that it was going to be okay. The time arrived and I felt a wave of panic come over me. Mom definitely felt it too. But we stayed strong and held onto our little friends. Mom held Lucy and I held Audi and they passed on in our arms.

 I wanted to write about it even though it's a ... different sort of situation. I know that I will be judged for having been there, for not "saving" them, for allowing my family pets to go without a fight. But I needed to release the experience. I have to let it go, like I let them go. I don't regret being there for Audi and Lucy because I feel like having both of us there made them feel more at ease. Audi was very adamant about staying on my lap and I'm glad I could provide comfort to her, when she needed it the most.

 This post wasn't about convincing anyone else that what we did was okay.. I needed to write it out, so I could convince myself that it was.. I needed to write what I felt and how I feel. I needed to quietly share this with the world.. even though it's hard.

Audi and Lucy you were two really good girls. You lived long lives and I think you went out of this world, when things were still good. You weren't peeing your beds or full of arthritis. You were spry, you were happy and you had a good time while you were here. I love you, little friends. I'm sorry my time with you is over, but I'm so happy that you get to be with your biggest fan of all; your daddy.




Noor said...

Oh so sad to hear about your dogs . I am a pet lover but always afraid to keep them as I know I can't be as good to take care .
NO NO NO , you won't be judged . NEVER! It's just a stage of life , we all have to move on with freshly coming things and leave over what we had before . These dogs have been with you , you have been with them . But everyone just has to leave sometime .
Perhaps I have a wrong time to say , but you look SO much like your mum.
Noor @ Noor's Place

Areeba said...

I never had a pet so I'm not sure how to start or what to say. I can understand how much it would be hard to leave them as they were part of your family. Nobody will judge you girl, sometimes it's not someone's fault, it's just destiny!

Sarah said...

Oh, what a heartbreaking decision. I am near tears just reading this. I know this must have been so hard for you and your mom, and I agree that your decision was better for them than taking them to the shelter. I agree completely. I've had two long term family pets where we did just the opposite - refused to euthanize, even though their quality of life was severely impaired. Like our sweet Natasha - I was thinking about her as I was reading your post and wishing that she could have passed as painlessly and peacefully as your dogs did. Damn dogs, I tell you what, they'll break your heart no matter what you do. But anyway, I hope that this marks a new, positive chapter in your mom's life.