Saturday, April 21, 2012

She is Grace

We had to put down our 13 year old Golden Retriever today.  She was very old, she had some tumor issues, she was losing weight fast, she was in pain... It was just time.

The kids knew it might be coming; we've talked about it frankly for a few months now.  We let them know today that we were taking her to the vet, we took pictures of them with her, and we told them we'd come get them to say goodbye if we needed to.

My husband wondered why they didn't seem very upset or emotional about it, but I knew they were just in denial that it was happening.  They didn't want it to be real, so they assumed she would be fine.  Hell, I'd been doing the same thing for a while.

After the decision was made and we got them to the vet, we let them know what was going to happen.  Even after all the talk, they both broke down at the reality of it.  On one level, it didn't come as a surprise, but on another they were very unprepared for the grief.  It him them like a tidal wive.  They both started sobbing.

I started to feel that we had made the wrong decision, that we should have waited, taken her home, talked about it more, let them get used to the idea... But we had already started the process.  Belle was laying on a table with an IV inserted waiting for us to tell her goodbye.

We did, and it was gut wrenching.  They were so upset.  I was sad for the loss of Belle, but their pain was really what was hurting me the most.  Are we doing the right thing?  Should they see this?  They wanted to be there.  They asked to stay with her.

It happened so fast.  It felt like it was happening too fast.  I almost told him to stop, wait!  But I didn't want to waver; I didn't want them to be angry with me later.  If I showed doubt, maybe they would start to question our decision.  I held my tongue, and I stood with them and we held her while she passed.  And just like that, it was over.  She was at peace.

Later, we were taking our little dog for a walk and enjoying the incongruously beautiful weather, and Grace asked me which way I wanted to go, which route I wanted to take.  I told her she could decide, because I wasn't up for any more decisions today.

She said, Well, you made the right decision today. We did the right thing.  

I said, Really? You think so? I hope so.

She said, Yes, Belle is with God now, and God will take care of her.  

And there it was, the grace that is my Grace.  Dear Lord, I love this child.


  1. I am sorry for your families loss. :-(

  2. I'm sobbing now. Bless her little heart.
    It's me Gail. I don't know how this works

  3. I had a similar experience when we had to put down our old "Beau". The kids were less emotional than I had expected...until... Macey came home from school and only one dog was there to greet her. She phoned me in hysterics, she could barely breathe. Pobrecita :(

    1. I know, that's been the really hard part. We still forget occasionally and put food out for her. :-(