Sunday, October 11, 2009

Dealing with death and a two year old.

Waffles, for those of you that knew was Connor's sidekick. Two pounds of pure feisty chihuahua goodness she was the perfect companion to my very dog orientated son. Actually as a long time breeder and with all my previous experience showing dogs it was a match that should have never been, or at least I would have never thought possible. In general dogs that small just do not make great companions for little people. Connor, however, is the rare exception to that rule. Possibly it has something to do with the fact that he routinely had a Chihuahua sleeping in his crib or on the swing with him when he was barely a few weeks old himself. He's always just had this ability to relate and I trusted him without any doubt with all my dogs. They are after all his family, his playmates, his brothers and sisters.

When I found out I was pregant with my second baby I made a gut wrenching decision to place most of our dogs. Actually three of the seven to be exact. Trying to decide who should go and who should leave was absolutely one of the worst decisions I've ever had to make. In the end it came down to really who was needed else where. Ellie went to live with my cousin, Gold went back to his originally mommy to continue his stud dog duties in IL, and Penelope (now renamed Regan) went off to IN to hopefully become a mommy to some gorgeous little chocolate spotted puppies (everyone cross your fingers that it happens). Lelah was the last to go... and admittely the hardest for me to swallow. We've had her since she was a puppy and she has always been our rock. She was with me the night we had police bust into our house (long story.. heh it was a prank call intended for our neighbor by his ex wife that went terribly wrong), she was with me when I found out I was pregnant with Connor, we actually had our first born within a few days of each other. Chris used to joke that Lelah was our most expensive possession as I bought her to be a show dog and paid more for her than my car is worth and made Chris drive 15 hours both ways non stop to pick her up after he had just worked a 10 hour shift. That actually turned into a memorable trip for us as I got lost on the way home and I swear we spent what felt like a lifetime trying to get home. Regardless of how I felt about her I promised myself I'd get down to four dogs regardless and it really came down to Waffles or Lelah and my little man couldn't be without his Waffles so I finally offered Lelah to my cousin since she had asked several months before.

Fate plays tricks on us.. and not even two hours after Lelah went home with my cousin Waffles came down with a mysterious stomach bug. We still have no clue what caused it but a two pound chihuahua is always susceptible to even the slightest illness. It wasn't even all that alarming a three little clear throw ups.. and she just looked kinda miserable. I stayed up late and played doctor and was sure by morning she'd be back to her old self. We were not that lucky however. By morning Waffles was in a full blown hypoglycemic attack. One of the worst I've ever seen. We rushed her to the vet, kept her on an IV drip and antibiotics all day.. and her temperature and sugar never would regulate. In the end Waffles died in my arms around 6pm Thursday night. We may never know exactly what went wrong with Waffles though I honestly fear it was something genetic as this is not the first Lelah puppy we lost. Though the other died very early. In the end nothing showed up on any of the blood work and to be totally honest with you an autopsy may have given us an answer but it would have not made me feel any better.

At first it was just this overwhelming sense of emptiness. Connor wanted to know when Waffles would wake up.. I didn't sleep.. partially out of this overwhelming sense of guilt that not only did I just loose his best friend but I just gave away his second best friend. It wasn't until Friday did it all hit me like a ton of bricks. I've honestly not slept other than a short nap today and yesterday since Waffles died. I've gone from fits of hysteria to anger to just full blown denial. Connor doesn't totally understand. I think he's very aware that Waffles is gone.. or sleeping as he calls it.. but his grief comes in short bursts. He's been having nightmares and won't tell me what they are about. I'm honestly just not doing that well. Letting Lelah go was difficult but I tricked myself into thinking it would be ok.. after all she is just a few blocks down the street. But loosing her last puppy in less than 24 hours later... 10 hours 32 minutes to be exact.. is more than I can bear.

Ironically enough I've spent all summer trying to detach myself from my dogs as much as possible hoping that would make this whole transition easier and the fact that I've been so busy and sick with this pregnancy made that somewhat easy to do. It was a valiant effort, but there is no real fooling the heart. I miss Waffles but my heart really aches for Lelah.

Ive made it all afternoon without crying.. much... but here I am at 11:35pm bracing myself for another night. Last night was bad.. and I do mean bad.. I think I spend all day attempting to hide it all from Connor and Chris the best I can and once I'm all alone with Connor in bed and Chris at work it just overflows. I pray for sleep even if only for a few hours of relief.

What I would give to rewind the last few days and start again.

7 Comments:

BlondeBlogger said...

Oh wow. I am so, so sorry. I am in tears reading your post. You are living my worst fear as I've been going through something similar with my Bichon and unknown stomach issues with her.

I will be praying for you all and for Connor, poor little guy. It is just the worst pain to go through this kind of loss, especially after you've just had to say goodbye to your other pups. I am so sorry. :(

Leane said...

SO, so sorry. I still miss a Great Dane that I had to give away over 7 years ago. I still cry over him. Sometimes you don't realize how much you are truly attached until they are gone. My heart goes out to you and Connor. Best wishes for a healing heart.

Naomi said...

I am so sorry about poor Waffles. I know Connor will miss her but kids are so much more understanding about death and loss than we are... if you explain it to him, I am sure he will help you grieve for her and heal yourself.

katy said...

I am so sorry about the loss of Waffles. Remember all the good times. I'm sure he was comforted knowing you were holding him when he passed. I don't know how to explain death to a 2 year old.

Kristie said...

I'm so sorry! It is so hard to lose a pet, because they truly are one of the family. I'm not sure if you've read this before, but it's a poem that I've always liked:

http://www.3mscatpage.net/Memorials/Bridge_Poem/bridge_poem.html

You will be in my prayers. :-) Take care!

NateAndJakesMom said...

Oh Angela, I don't have the words to make it better and I a just feel so much pain for you. I hope that each day gets easier for you and Connor. I hope that it is true that things happen for a reason and that soon you will know why you are having to go through all of this pain.

Thinking of you.

Jen said...

I am so sorry for your loss. I can't say I know how you feel, but I really couldn't imagine loosing any of my "first children". Prayers to be with you and your family. -Cloth Diaper Momma

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