Thursday, December 23, 2010

Snowy. Back Where He Belongs.

Thanks so much to each of you who has taken the time to write and share your sympathy and concern for our family. Thanks also, to those of you who have shared your own stories of losing a pet; it's helpful to read your experiences and be reminded of how universal this whole "love of pets" phenomenon is.

As a cancer mom (and a cancer survivor) I sometimes feel like there must be something wrong about feeling such deep sadness at the pending death of a pet, when so many people that I know have lost a child or a spouse.

Obviously, if Sarah or Steve's death was around the corner, I would be experiencing a whole different level of grief. And for those of you who have lost loved ones (I lost my dad a little over a year ago) you know what level I'm talking about.

And yet I can't help but believe that it's also "legal" to grieve deeply for a furry family member, too. They come into our lives with very little to give but unconditional love. And when you've been loved unconditionally for eleven years by someone who is also cute to boot?

Well, that makes good byes extra hard.

I saw a sign at the vet's office that said, "A dog. A poor man's psychiatrist. " How true is that?

Well, right now my furry psychiatrist and I are nestled into our favorite chair. I've got his snuggly red blanket wrapped around him and he is currently emitting sighs of pure bliss.

And when Sir Snowy is feeling blissful? Well, I can't help but feel a wee tinge of bliss myself.


I'm sorry I've not posted any pictures for a couple posts. My laptop has suddenly stopped going online so I'm having to borrow Nathan's laptop. Unfortunately, all my pictures are stored on my computer; plus, the blog writing software I use on my computer (LiveWriter) isn't on Nathan's computer and so it makes posting pictures a lot harder. But I'm workin' on it

Background/Religion Comments

I've continued to be fascinated to read your religious background comments; I had no idea that Smithellaneous readers represented such a broad spectrum! Thanks to those of you who have participated in this informal survey; please feel free to jump in on the conversation. I'm really enjoying this process of finding out where each of us is on our spiritual journey and how we got here.

And to those of you who said such kind things about me and the blog in those recent comments--thank you. That encouraged me so much.

Well, I'm going to sign off and spend a little time with Ye Olde Doggie. So grateful to have these extra days to spend with my own personal psychiatrist!

19 Had Something To Say (Just click here!):

Lynn said...

SNIFF. :"( I haven't visited in several days and so had to catch up. I am so sad to read the outcome of Snowy's vet trip. Oh, it breaks my heart for you guys. We have been in this terrible place and do understand the sorrow and grief of saying goodbye to these sweet pets God gives to provide that unconditional love and companionship. I pray Snowy will continue to know only love and minimal discomfort. He has sure been a gift when you have most needed him. What a good doggie he is!

We are continuing to have issues with ours as well - dealing with seizures now. : ( At least her mouth doesn't hurt anymore and if we lost her tomorrow, I wouldn't regret having all those teeth pulled and giving her that relief.
God bless yall in this Christmas Season... and dear Lord, thank you for the furballs that enrich our lives!

Anonymous said...

Glad to hear Snowy is back home :)

And I want to say that also have enjoyed to read about people's background. Thanks for taking time to answer :)

I feel I want to share a bit more about my own religous background. As I said I was raised in a protestant family, but we are non practing (We do celebrate Christmas). I never really think so much about religion before I became 16 and that was when I found Sarah's website, Becky :) Reading your blogs and such have made me think about God etc. And now? As I said, I do not know where I stand. But I know for sure, I am not an atheist because I believe in something. I do pray in the evening sometimes.
Recently I have also been reading about judaism and I have religion class in school (It is obligatiocal ;))

But I just wanted to know that Becky :)

Amanda J. said...

I am so very, very sorry to hear the news on Snowy. May whatever time he has left be filled with pain-free, happy days filled with lots of love. (And I know they will be because all of you have taken such great care of him). It is absolutely okay to grieve the loss of a pet. They are family. I know my four are.

Lynn - One of my dogs has seizures too. (Epilepsy). He had three over the summer before we put him on Phenobarbital. That medicine scares me b/c of potential side effects, but he's been three months seizure-free so far (Knock on wood). They are a frightening thing to witness and I am so sorry you are having to experience that too.

Melissa said...

So sorry to hear about Snowy. It's so hard to lose a pet, because they really do become part of the family, and not 'just an animal.' I lost my 14 year old cat last year. She started getting sicker and sicker and lost a dangerous amount of weight. The vet never could pinpoint exactly what was wrong, all the tests were negative. It was so hard to lose her, and hopefully you can take come comfort in knowing that there are pet owners out there who know just what you're going through.

Denise said...

:( I'm so very sorry to hear the news. I'll keep you in my prayers.

Companion animals give us unconditional love, they give us loyal support and they want only one thing in return: to be loved. IMHO pets ARE part of the family, and when we lose them, the grief is profound.

When I lost my cat with lymphoma, I was pretty much in a haze for the next month. I didn't think I'd ever smile again, and every time I saw a cat at a store or a friend's house, I started crying. I actually remember there was one night I was in the supermarket trying to buy bread, and that made me cry because I couldn't make a decision. There were one or two insensitive people who told me "it's just a cat" or "just get another one," and they really hurt me. They didn't understand what that bond was like.

Those of us who have had to say goodbye to a cherished cat or dog DO understand. I hope you will be able to enjoy all of your time with Snowy from here on out. It takes a lot of courage and love to know when the time is right to say goodbye. All good wishes to you and to Snowy that the transition is easy for both of you.

Denise said...

I also wanted to share a little more about my religious background. I was born and baptized Catholic, but by the time I was seven we had left the church. My family vehemently disagreed with the church's views, and so did I.

My four best friends were Catholic, Jewish, Hindu and Southern Baptist, so I ended up tagging along to all sorts of services, Bible camps, bat mitzvahs, masses, etc. I learned bits of Hebrew and Hindi, learned about all sorts of traditions, and even won a trophy for remembering the most Bible verses at camp one year. :)

Now I believe in God as a higher power, but I don't believe in following an organized religion for myself. When I feel I need guidance I go to a Buddhist temple to meditate, and I feel that God is everywhere.

Anonymous said...

I am feeling very sad about Snowy.

I want to share a memory about my sweet Rachael that includes the death of a pet and religion.
I was raised Catholic. I raised Rachael the same. She spoke to a priest at the time of her 1st communion (2nd grade). She asked if the priest believed animals went to heaven. The priest said, "you are NOT to believe that animals go to heaven." Rachael ran out of the church spitting mad. She continued to attend church, but when she entered middle school, she refused to go...her reason, 'that priest told me his heaven didn't have animals, that's not the heaven I want to go to." I hope whatever heaven Rachael now resides in has all her beloved animals that have died, before and after her. For me, I no longer attend church, but that is another story for another time.

Kathie Mayo...Rachael's mom

Anna said...

Making a memorial on might help

Anne said...

Glad Snowy is back home for the giving and receiving of that unconditional love :) It goes both ways!! As far as grief goes, no matter what the loss, it is still grief. Someone told me once that every loss resurrects the one before. So it can be a cumulative thing...dear little Snowy, hang in there buddy!!!

Bridgette said...

This just makes me sad for everyone and especially Sarah! I know exactly how you feel. Pets become a part of the family and we get very attached!

Rachel (from Kentucky) said...

I haven't commented lately because my computer has been having issues, but I have definitely been reading and I wanted to send my thoughts and prayers for snowy and your family.

We have had many pets over the years, including a siberian husky we all dearly loved. It's amazing how much an intergral part of the family pets become.

I was listening to a song on the way home... "The Breath You Take" by George Strait. There's a moment in the song where he talks about his granddaughter's birth and the lyrics says that it took his breath away when she was born "just like it took his breath away when dad took his last that morn"... it was one of those songs that makes you stop and think and remember that death can be beautiful too... breathtaking. Not because of the pain it causes us to endure, but because of the life and the love we get to remember at the end.

I have been reading since the early years of Sarah (as super hero "vomit girl") and Snowy her trusty loving sidekick and I know for certain from all those stories that your memories are going to be sweet for certain!

Praying you have a wonderful Christmas with sweet Snowy!

Anonymous said...

Dear Snowy: God loves do we! Jojy
Becky: When our dog Charlie died, we sent a donation to our local SPCA in memory of Charlie. They sent us back a nice card, thanking us for helping other dogs find loving homes like Charlie had. Just food for thought.

Anonymous said...


I would think someone who has had a family member battle cancer, and had battled it herself probably has an even greater appreciation for life. All life. Especially the life of a furry family member. Funny thing about pets, is that when times are tough, and even the human family members walk away, those furry family members are forever loyal and loving. I'm happy for you that Snowy is able to be part of your Christmas celebration.

Bridget from Canada

A Mom's Serious Blunder said...

I am so sorry to hear about Snowy but it is the time of year for miracles...maybe even a furry one. I am looking for one too, the non-furry kind.

simplykristi said...

Hi Steve, Bebcky, Nathan, and Sarah,
I am so sorry to heat about Snowy. :( My heart goes out to all of you. I lost my beloved dog, Tinkerbell, in January of this year unexpectedly. She was 7 1/2 years old. I adopted Tinker when she was two years old as a 40th birthday gift to myself. Tinker died from a massive seizure exactly three weeks after my mom had passed. She died in my loving arms. I was devastated when Tinker died. I still miss her to this day. I miss Tinker as much as I do my parents.

Enjoy the time you have left with Snowy. Know that I will be praying for you all.

When you make the journey to the Rainbow Bridge, please tell Tinkerbell how much her Mama misses her and give her hugs and kisses for me.


Leece said...

Hello - I finish work today for the Christmas break and don't have the internet at home, so I'd like to wish you all the best possible Christmas now and wishing Snowy the best most loved up Christmas ever. Goodbyes are so, so hard. Ronnie and I lost Amber (a yorkie) in 2001. I believe that was God's way of teaching me how to grieve and I was more prepared for the horrible sensation when Ronnie, my husband, died in 2006. Now, my latest little dog, Chelsea is in much the same state as Snowy. I believe, have to believe, that there is a place in Gods house for our wonderful furry friends. Therefore when I have to let Chelsea go I will be trusing God and Ronnie to look after her but my heart will still break. Much love to you all. I'll catch up with your blog after New Year. God Bless

Anonymous said...

Thinking of you all..((HUGS))

Anonymous said...

Yes, Becky, grief is allowed, even for our dear furry friends. When our dog was in his last days, I was praying for a little boy who was dying of cancer. I prayed for my dog's healing as well, since God is big enough to do both. His resources are not limited like ours. Don't feel guilty about your grief. When we are blessed to love ANY creature, we will grieve when they go from our lives. I believe God understands and holds us in His loving arms at such times. You are in my prayers.

Anonymous said...

Dogs are just beings, like we are. Sure, not human beings, but they are creatures with emotions and insight and their own type of intelligence. It's totally "legal" to grieve for the loss of a relationship with another being, even if that relationship isn't as complex as that you'd have with another human and therefore your grief different.