Its so quiet.
There's no heavy breathing in my room. No groans or grunts. No rustle of the dog bed as he circles before plopping down with a grunt. No more almost raspberry sound and slight whine when he wants my attention. No more rustle of the christmas lights as he pokes his nose out the door.
In the morning:
No more nose stuck in my face and the slight whine to get my attention/wake me up at 6am. No more going down the stairs half asleep one step at a time in time with my dogs steps down. No more reason to open the door to let him outside to go potty. No more standing on the landing with my "gimme gimme" hands to get him to come back upstairs with me. No more scarf on the floor to wedge between the door so the dog doesn't feel trapped with the door closed. No more pants on the floor to catch the door from flying wide open when he finally makes it up the stairs and barges into the door with his nose. No more black marks on the door frame and door from his nose and body rubbing against it. No more laying in bed and looking over at him laying on his bed or standing expectantly waiting for me to get up. No more dog hair on my sheets. No more dog leaning against the mattress as he lowers himself to the ground. No more dog hair on the side of the box spring and mattress where he lays. No more pulling out a random hand out to the edge of the bed so the dog can nudge me some more and so I can pet his head. No more explaining I want to rest for another 45 minutes as he wakes up cuz my roommate is getting ready for work and/or my alarm wakes him. No more frantic turn around towards the door when I finally get out of bed. No more opening the door wide to make him feel comfortable first thing in the morning. No more nose sniffing the pants I decide to wear that morning and putting them on carefully as not to knee the dog in the nose as he sniffs. No more nose cautiously stepping onto the bathroom floor in order to sniff me as I'm brushing my hair. No more expectant look when I got to the closet to get a washcloth wondering if I'm going downstairs. No more bed to haul downstairs for the dog to lay on when I leave. No more turning on the lights so the dog can see the stairs. No more taking the stairs one at a time along side the dog a second time in the morning. No more urgency to open the door first to let the dog out, again. No more reason to put on a jacket and shoes while I wait for the dog to come back in. No more interest in the weather outside, stepping out onto the porch and taking in the morning air. No more daily pills and breakfast for the dog. No more eating my food and taking my pills and then getting his pills and food ready. No more pushing down food into his tray from the feeder. No more clanking on the water bowl from his dog tags when he drinks. No more reason to refill water bowl. No more cans of wet dog food to appease him in his old age when food and walks are his only joy in life. No more dog sitting on the carpet piece in the kitchen while he waits and watches me fix my food and sit down and eat. No more curious and brave dog to trek across the kitchen floor sniffing for any dropped food when I sit down to eat. No more click clack of his claws on the floor as he carefully walks from carpet piece to the front room. No more slow and awkward walk as the dog stands direcly in front of me in the front room and I'm trying to get around him as he looks expectantly at me. No more putting down all my stuff for work in order to open the door and call "Last call for potty". No more being late cuz the dog takes a while to go potty. No more reason to say "I'm going buh bye, you stay stay." No more knowing look that says he knows. No more reason to say "I woof you" in my silly manner as I shut the door and lock it. No more poop to pick up from the lawn before I drive away.
In the evening:
No more reason to go home. No more reason to rush any errands in order to get home before 6:30 or 7 in order to let the dog go potty. No more dog to jolt awake when I unlock the door. No more of my favorite stance the dog does when I come home and I use my giddy voice asking him out he is. No more giddy silly nicknames to call out. "My max a doodle, my noodle, my oodle oddles, my macarune, my puppies, cutest puppies in the whole wide world" No more of his head ducking out of my reach when I try to pet him. No more unamused look when he's done with the giddy greeting and wants to go outside. No more two second greeting before he's done and staring at the door expectantly like I"m not there and I proclaim, "Oh fine, go potty" and he happily patters outside. No more reason to leave the door open while I gather a dog bag and mail box keys, leaving the groceries or whatnot and going outside with the door. No more walk down to the grass area and the mail box with a slow and curious sniffing dog the whole way. No more dog looking up at me from the grass area watching me walk out of sight to the mailbox and looking for me to come back. No more dog to follow directly behind me when I take the garbage to the street. No more dog lagging behind and stopping in the middle of the parking lot or sidewalk watching me take the garbage out and not wanting to follow me at times. No more standing waiting and watching as the dog walks around the yard and picks at the grass trying to eat the good parts. No more dog in the bushes picking the leaves off and eating them. No more reason to ask, "are you done yet?" and using my body language to indicate I was going back to the house. No more dog to literally follow me back to the house. No more dog going up the wrong sidewalk to the wrong house and me always correcting him, "One more sidewalk, one more baby" No more opening the door for an expectant dog. No more dog to watch me excitedly as I either put on a jacket or take one off wondering if we are going for a walk that night. No more dog that wants/expects me to go to the kitchen for dinner first and foremost. No more impatient dog with his slight whine and blowing raspberry sound when I dont go to the kitchen for dinner first. No more nose nudging when I lay on the couch or lay in bed for a quick nap instead of make dinner. No more reason to get dinner cuz I dont need to feed the dog wet food anymore. No more watching the clock and mentally setting up times to eat in order to get the dog his pain pills with dinner so I dont have to feed him twice. No more looking at the clock and wondering how long I've left the dog at home. No more counting hours. No more accomodating dogs potty schedule. No more watching TV with a wandering dog around the front room. No more nose poking while on the couch. No more petting his head when he puts it up in my lap. No more dog sleeping when I watch TV. No more jumpy dog to get up everytime me or my roommate laughs or coughs or sneezes. No more reason to open the door at night to let the dog go potty before bed. No more hauling a bed upstairs for the dog to sleep on. No more going upstairs and waiting for a dog to follow soon after. No more heavy breathing as he gets up the stairs and goes straight for his drinking water before getting his wet mug all over my sheets and blankets. No more circling his bed and plopping down. No more stepping over his bed to get to the desk to sit and read. No more dog head on my leg to pet as I read distractedly. No more nervous jumpy dog to get up when I am done reading and kneel at my bed. No more plugging in Christmas lights in order to see the dog in the middle of the night if he has nightmares or at 6am before the sun comes up and he wants to go outside. No more accidental poops on his bed. No more faint shadow of his white haired framed face in the dark by the bed, in the doorway, laying on his bed. No more heavy breathing through nose/snoring, no more nightmares, no more twitches and kicks of his legs on a noisy bed. No more ear aches. No more licking noises as he licks his front legs cuz they hurt. No more staring at each other in our beds. No more of my smiles to will him to get up and come over for a pet on the head. No more dog to hug or attempt to snuggle when I'm sad. No more dog to walk away nervously when I cry.
In general: No more dog jumping at the sound of a wrapper indicating food. No more dog getting up and poking at nose at me when I cough. No more nervous dog eyes. No more of the dog being scared of things in general like kids, cats, balloons, water, toy guns, yelling, play fighting, the hardwood floor, etc. No more dog pulling away a paw from my grasp or head pulling away from my reach. No more nips at long sleeves when he greets me. No more jumps at the doorbell, loud noise or whistle on TV, or thought he heard something. No more yelp at Gmas when he's outside and wants in. No more heavy breathing when he gets excited or b/c of pain in his last days. No more digging for moles in the yard. No more cuteness greeting when I come home. No more trips to Gmas or parents. No more holidays to which the dog gorges on food. No more scary holidays with fireworks. No more dog to sniff guests or family members. No random sniffings when I come home from an activity and he wants to know where I've been. No more baths, vet visits, brushings, or otherwise scary activities. No more treats to give. No one to give my left over food to, no more vaccum for the kitchen floor when I drop things. No more reason to go outside period. No more reason to come home.
When you make a list like this you notice the things you took for granted.
It is hard to go home now. Its hard to see all the places he's been, his home, his bed, his food and water, his hair, his yard, his leash, his pills, his carpets he needs on the hard floors, his dog bags, his treats. Its hard knowing I'll never see him in that place again. After he left I couldn't stand to be in the house. I had to leave.
Its easier to go and be places that he couldn't come with me, that he normally isn't there. So getting in the car and driving away is normal without the dog and it felt better. Going to the store or a church activity is normal without the dog. Going to work or the movies is normal without the dog and feels much better. Home is another story.
So I went to the foot doctor to see about my ingrown toenail finally after like two years. I had some bouts of crying but they stopped by the time I got into the doc. I stood at the counter and gave my information and practiced breathing technics. They prolly thought I was weird breathing like that. I didn't care what the doc did or said to me. I was a zombie, just there. I didnt care if he didn't listen or didn't explain or if I didn't like him. I didn't even care how long they left me in that room waiting for the doc each time he left. I read through a magazine to distract myself and texted my mom telling her the dog is gone. Gone is such an ambiguous word. The doc shot me a few times with a needle to numb my toe which hurt bad, left me forever to let it numb, came back and cut something and bandaged it all up and sent me home with instructions to soak it later in epson salt. That does not sound pleasant.
Hobbling out of the doctors office cuz of a giant numb toe in a weird way validated my emotions through something physical, like my body and my emotions were talking to each and together they made me limp to the car. It made me feel more secure or something. It was odd. I got out of the doctors office at 5:30 so it was rush house traffice. Everyone was going south so the only open lane was the freeway going north. So I went and then traffic clogged up at 7th north so I took that exit and ended up at Gmas. She's not usually the one I need in such situations, but she was prolly the best option I had, if I had to have someone to talk to. I've ended up at her house on random weekends without the dog to complain about the dog and the decision to end it. She got all the disaster leading up to this decision, she might as well see the end of the disaster as I finally make the decision. She, of course, will help me take care of myself physically as I do not feel the need to do such at that time. She fed me and helped me soak my toe as I was afraid of salt and maybe an open wound. She attempted to get me to stay overnight as I told her how hard it was at the house. She distracted me with family business as usual and her quilting for the new babies.
But now its just random moments of sudden reality slamming into me. My dog is gone.
It was so quiet in my room. I didn't know what to do. I sat on my bed and stared in silence. I was scared to fall asleep. I laid staring at the walls in silence until the pills took me. I didn't want to wake up thinking my dog was there and wanted to go to the bathroom. I didnt want to forget and look around my room and remember. I had to rearrange my bed so I wasn't looking in the general direction of the dogs bed when I woke up. I didn't turn on the Christmas lights either. That was for me to be able to see and watch my dog as he sleeps sometimes.
I thought ending all this would make everything alright if I knew I did it for the right reasons. But even the right reasons doesn't make this feel better. The aftermath of him physically not being here seems much worse than the right reasons, hence the selfishness to keep him.
I took off work to be with him until his 2pm death sentence. We did the things he wanted to do and in between I cleaned in order to not think and/or freak out. I did the dishes and cleaned my room. I didnt start getting rid of all of his stuff so as to alarm him, but I kinda wanted to stuff it all in a closet right then. When I wasn't cleaning we did what he loves most. Eating. He pritti much ate a whole can of wet food, my last can, breakfast and lunch. He loved it. Loved licking the bowl clean. And then we went on walks. His other favorite. The only two joys in life as he doesn't know how to "play" and is scared of everything else. We went for two short walks. Tried to keep busy so I wouldn't think. I gathered his things in the car and he was excited as usual looking expectantly as the door he wanted to go in. He didn't make the landing when he jumped in, of course, so I hefted him the rest of the way. I think he scratched up my new black car getting in. But he got in and was happy. Still heavy breathing. My stomach felt so sick. I drove away. Longest drive to the vet ever, actually it was all too quick. He jumped out of the car just fine, ready to go. He checked out the grass so it took a minute to point him toward the door. He knows that door, that smell, that place. He doesn't like it. He wouldn't go in. So I went in first cuz I knew he'd follow me. That made my stomach even sicker. I donated the rest of his medication and paid $204 and consented to his death and I waited for awhile in the waiting room with Max staring at the door. All the other times he's been in he was able to come back out and leave with me. I wonder what he thought. I wonder if he knew. I know he was scared.
She said we could come back and helped me spread the blanket on the floor so he would walk down the hallways. He wouldn't go and searched frantically for a safe spot in between carpets and blankets. So I went first cuz I knew he'd follow me. And he did. He made it down like two hallways without blankets cuz he was simply following me. We went into a dingy, small, concrete floor room with a single Precious Moments blanket on the floor and two chairs. I think I know why they had the rocking chair in there now that I think about it. They had cute little bookmark and poem memorabilia for the owner to take. The door frame had bite marks and dog scratches all over it as I could imagine a lot of dogs attempted to escape that room. I put all my stuff down on the rocking chair and ready to hold my dog as they poked him. But the two ladies came in, thank goodness it was the lady doctor today, the other held Max with her back to me so I couldn't see from where I was, which was okay. There was no touch to calm Max as he was scared and she picked the leg I think hurts him the most to poke. Then they left for a minute er so while I sat on the blanket and waited for him to sit down also as he couldn't walk to well with being poked and bandaged. They came back and poked him in the butt with a sedative. He tried to walk around with that also, but I moved again on the blanket and told him to sit by me and he eventually laid down by me. He knew the sedative was taking him and he tried to get up a few times but I pulled him back down and got the closet I've ever been to cuddling him without him pulling away from me. In time his eyes did the weird creepy half way open thing he does when he sleeps sometimes. I kissed his head and told him I loved him. Throughout the whole thing I was telling him the pain would go away, esp after they poked his weakest arm. He was scared and prolly in pain so he breathed heavily until the sedation. He was so quiet. The doc came in and asked if I had ever done this before. I said no and she explained what might happen after he stops breathing. She put the overdose of anesthia in his IV and it took like 30 seconds for his heart and lungs to stop. She stayed and confirmed he was done breathing, called it a peaceful ending or something, took his collar off for me, and said I could stay as long as I wanted to. I got all teary as she said this and she left. I almost wanted to burst into tears as she put the anesthia in simply because the liquid was pink. The irony. My love of the color pink is what killed my dog. Maybe I dont like pink anymore.
And I finally got to cuddle my dog. I got to bury my head in his neck and just bawl. I got to hold his paws with him pulling away. I got to cry without him being nervous and licking his chops or attempting to walk away. He was so still. I didn't realize how jumpy he was at everything I did until he stopped. He didn't turn his face to me to make me pull away. He didn't pull away or move or anything. I know he jumps at the sound of his collar tags clanking cuz he loves that collar. Its like his badge of honor. It means he can go for walks. Even in that room after he was so still I tried to keep the collar tags silenced so he wouldn't jump or get excited. I realized he wasn't going to so I jingled them just in spite. I took pictures of his paw in my hand out of spite cuz he never let me hold his paw. I gloated about the fact I could look at his ear cuz I'm pritti sure he had another ear ache going cuz he shook his more often. So I got a cue tip and poked in his ear and expected him to pull his head away. I gloated that I finally got to cuddle him and took full advantage to finally getting some snuggle time. I looked at the clock and gave myself a time limit. I dont remember how long I was there. But I moved his body into a more Max position and the realization stuck me even harder. His limp body.
I prayed to God on top of his chest that didn't move up and down anymore. I thanked God for the dog he let me borrow, for the time we had together, for the love we shared. I asked God to forgive me for keeping him alive when He told me to let him go. I asked Max to forgive me for the extra pain he might have suffered because I was too selfish and in denial about letting him go. I asked God to take care of my Max and give him something to do and maybe teach him how to play fetch. I asked God cuz I wanted to make sure he wasn't in pain anymore and that he would be okay not following me around anymore. I know how important that was to Max. I asked for any help, strength or courage to be able to move on without Max that day and in the future.
I got up and gathered my things and I stared at him on the floor, not coming with me. So still, so silent. No eyes to look back at me. (We spent a lot of time staring at each other the last few nights) Not like my dog. I stepped out the door and couldn't close the door so I left it a crack open, stared one more time before walking away. I was fine until I got the door Max stared at scared a while ago, wanting out, wanting to go home. I walked out the door without Max. I got into my car without Max. I put the stuff in the car like I had Max coming with me. I looked in the backseat and there was no Max. I just left him there. I just left him there. I did not even allow myself to even attempt to think about what they were going to do to him when I left. I just left that picture of him on that blanket in my mind. I think I hate Precious Moments now. I cried hard and drove through tears cursing the school to let children out before 3pm on the dot and tried not to run any of them down. I drove home even though I knew it would hurt. I allowed myself to be angry for a moment as I got in the house and immediately started washing his empty food feeder and water bowl. I yanked his beds out of my bedroom and through one outside and stuffed the other in a closet. I shoved his collar and leash in another closet. I through anything with his hair on it into the washer. I cried loudly and tried to leave no sign of him behind. I had to leave at 3:30 for the doctors appointment. It was easy leaving the house. It was easier walking away from the memories of him being in that house and the fact he should prolly be in there right now as I left.
I just left him there.
My room is so quiet. My first night sleeping without him in forever.
He was so quiet, so still, no grunts or groans or heavy breathing.
I guess he never was a crier. He'd moan when he hurt or stress breathe.
He's gone. He really is gone.
Going to the doctors afterward and then to Gmas and home to shower and go to bed was too normal a thing to do after such an event. I feel like I needed/wanted to do something dramatic or irrational.
He never got to see/step on Gmas new carpet. He likes carpet.
He's not coming home with me for Easter in two weeks. He wont be around for my bday. He wont go up with me to babysit the kids anymore.
I think I can pinpoint the worst day of my entire life. March 24, 2015.
The worst day I had back in July 2006 was also a huge turning point in my life, so therefore it may have ultimately been a good thing. So unless losing my dog gets me a husband, this date is definitely the worst day ever.
I've never had anyone close to me pass away. The second Grandma L passed, I loved her, but she was kinda scary. So I went to Gma for comfort when my dog died, who am I going to go for comfort when she goes? I dont have a dog to cry on anymore.
My roommate told me about her eye doc appointment and laughed loudly about her dilated eyes when I got home from the worst day of my life. Really? She asked how I was first. Really? I'm still alive. He's not.
It feels wrong to think about all the things I can do now that he's gone. The places I can go, the lack of time frame I have, things I can do overnight or late into the night. Weekends I can disappear or never leave home and not feel bad the dog is stuck at home either way. Not having to be there to get him dinner or for his pills. I can get excited about something and totally forget the time. It kinda makes me sick to think about such. I dont want to leave the house for hours and hours just because I can now without feeling guilty about the dog, but it hurts to be inside the house at the same time.
I dreamed about this day and I have dreaded this day. I dreamed about what it would be like to sleep in without a potty break or three before 7am. I dreamed that I could sleep in past 8 cuz I didnt have to give a dog a pill. But then I dreaded the day also. I knew once the dream came true I wouldn't want it to be that way. That fear is real.
The fear of him physically not being there hurting the most is real. I wasn't crazy in my selfishness. I knew.
It was easier to break up with a boyfriend cuz he didn't live there. Cuz I didnt love him like I loved Max. I could go home and veg out in front of all five seasons of Leverage or Firefly and forget the ex, distract myself. But now when I lock myself in my room to veg out it just brings back memories. There was a reason I kicked Evan to the curb when I bought a new house. A new start. A new house not tainted with those memories. The dog came like 8 months afterward tho...
I said he'd make it one more winter at least last fall. And he did. Techinically spring started the 20th of March. But we had such a mild winter, it was practically spring in February. Prolly another reason he lasted so long.
All I ate 3/24 was the last package of poptarts simply so Max could eat the ends I dont like and/or have burnt. Then I finished off the rest of my left over beans I had around noon. By like 7pm at night I wanted popcorn and pineapple. But Gma kept me at her house and fed me a cup of ramen, some toast, a deviled egg, a cookie and attempted some ice cream and of course her veggie tray (that I didnt touch).
I guess I just needed a day to prepare and spend time with him. I have a lot of vacation days I prolly wont get through this year and I didnt get use one when I should've when I got a sinus infection so I didn't feel bad taking a day off for this.
He's been with me in that house for a year and a half. Thas a long time. The last seven months being on a pill schedule to help his arthritis. That schedule is now gone. Now what do I do. 5pm will roll around today at work and then I'll say, "Now what?"
I got a cheap temporary camera thingy and took pictures almost all 24 of him the last two days. Hopefully some of them turn out. The lighting wasn't great in the house and it was gloomy and rainy the other days, not much sun outside. Gma showed me the pic that I made Max take with me professionaly a few years ago. It almost made me burst into tears again. Now I need a shoebox aka memory box to put all of Max's stuff in. A bunch of pictures, collar, tags, etc. Something to help me close this chapter. I closed the Evan chapter by finishing my scrapbook with the end of the year and leaving the beginning of a new year open.
I can walk straight through the front room without stepping around his bed in the middle.
I feel better at work cuz its normal he's not around. But it still feels wrong to have a good day at work. It usually feels better around noon. But I feel I shouldn't be so happy. I know I wont when I have to go home.
I feel like I"ve forgotten what it feels like to hold his leash in my hand as we walk already.
I'm not looking forward to my first trip up north without him tho for Easter. That'll be hard. I couldn't stay overnight at Gmas without him.
But 15 or 16 years is a good enough age for a dog to be done with life. With or without the pain.
But I had to focus on the pain in order to convince myself it was the right thing and to actually do it. And actually focusing on the pain let me see it more. I didn’t know Saturday when I freaked out and couldn't make the appointment. Well, I thought I didn't know. I think I did know but didnt want to know. Anyways, but on Sunday I knew. I could see the pain. And I knew.