18 Jul

What are the stages of grief, I do not know. I do know that I am in the stage where eyes are wells that hold tears that pool over. My heart is so sad for Daphne. Even saying those words feels stiff and unsuited for what’s really going on in my heart. This is the moment I have dreaded since the day I brought her home, tucked neatly in a box that I put down in the front passenger floorboard. She tried to wiggle out but I tried to contain her as I drove swiftly home to present the newest member of our family to her brother, Scooby. Boy was he in for a rude awakening. He was 5, the big brother and didn’t want to be disturbed by the frolicking {want to play? want to play? want to play?}. But even though he professed (by growling) his dislike for her antics, they always played together. Life without a big, fat, fur ball sister doesn’t even feel real.

It’s hard to believe that my heart can feel any tighter in my chest, but I know tomorrow will be awash with new sentiments as we leave our home with our precious cargo but return alone. She will only return to us in a state that is non-Daphne. How can that be? How can our family be complete without Piggy trotting into the kitchen having heard the tear of an American cheese wrapper? Who is going to walk with me each morning as she has done through all these years? The feeling of loss seems inexhaustible despite the fact that she is laying the bathroom trying to breathe through each painful inhale. She is so utterly engrained into the fabric of our family that even others who love their own pets who have experienced their own loss cannot experience what I am feeling. No one has loved Daphne the way we have. No one has cared for her, combed her clumps of matted hair, smoothed her silky ears during booms of thunder, snuck her bits of countertop food despite her weight.

Her obvious love for this family is unmistakable. The protection she has afforded us with each person that has passed by our sidewalk or driven up to our door. The desire to beat out her big brother for the front seat so she can stick her nose out the window and feel the wind rushing against her beautiful face. She will never again lift that face out the window. She can only lay as a shell on the floor as we plan to relieve her of all her pain.

I wish so much for time to stop. Who doesn’t who has experienced grief? I can hardly see the writing on the screen as flashes of Daphne memories accost me and fill my eyes as leaky faucets. So much loss. Such a great dog.


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