Tuesday, May 01, 2018

Happy Anniversary! I love you!


Eight Years On
Things begin.
Things end.
All creatures born,
Eventually die.
All things built,
Eventually crumble.
The pendulum of power,
Swings as it chooses.
And somehow,
Through it all
We continue.
Happy Anniversary, I love you!

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Friday, October 13, 2017

Remembering Clyde: August 1, 2002 - October 13, 2017


Orange County, NC, USA - Mar 19, 2011
The year 2017 is not going to be remembered fondly in our house. It's been kind of a rough one for us, and an even rougher one for our four-legged companions. In April, we lost Tonka, who'd been my faithful sidekick for all of his 14 1/2 years.

Today we lost Miss Clyde, who had been Wendy's baby for even longer than that.

She'd been diagnosed with a very aggressive type of malignant tumor in her mouth a month or so ago, that made eating difficult, and possibly even painful for her. We knew she didn't have a lot of time left, and the best we were going to be able to do for her was keep her as comfortable as possible for the time she had remaining. We weren't really prepared for how rapidly things would deteriorate, though. I suppose nobody ever is. She hated the pain medication we were given for her, and would disappear any time she knew it was coming. She'd always given me kind of a wide berth, but when she started hiding from Wendy we started to realize that we were probably in the end stage. Then a few days ago, she started refusing nearly all food. At which point we knew that it was time; she was ready to be done and if we didn't end it for her, she was going to do it herself.

So this morning, we took her for her last ride. Her passing was quiet, a transition so peaceful that it was almost impossible to detect. We brought her home and laid her to rest in the wooded part of the back yard that she loved, a small volunteer arbor vitae marking her final resting place.

And if she could, she'd ask that if you wish to remember her, to make a memorial contribution to her favorite rescue, Goathouse Refuge in Pittsboro. She didn't come from there, but she heartily approved of the work they do there, "providing cage-free care for cats regardless of age, medical issues or disposition until a permanent loving adoptive home can be found."

Travel well, Clyde. You will never be forgotten, and you are always loved.

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Monday, May 01, 2017

Happy Anniversary! I love you!!


Seven Years On
It hardly seems possible that seven whole years have come and gone since that first meeting at Monterrey. In some ways it feels like we jumped in a Tardis and flashed forward while the rest of the world went about its business in real time.
But in other ways, at other times, it feels as though I've known you my entire life. Or maybe in a life before this one -- if such a thing exists.
The way you know without knowing exactly what to say, or exactly what to do; almost better than I do myself.
It's still astonishing to me, even after all this time, and all the events of those years, how instinctively we fit together.
I don't know if there's such a thing as "destiny" in the objective sense of the word or not.
I just know that when we met, I knew almost form the beginning that we were supposed ot be together.
And now seven years on, I see nothing to dissuade me from that assessment.
Fate? Divine intervention? Or just dumb luck?
I don't know, nor do I concern myself overmuch with the answer.
I just know I love you. And that's enough. Happy Anniversary!

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Sunday, April 23, 2017

For an Absent Friend


Tonka - November 12, 2002 - April 21 2017
Wendell, NC, USA - April 15, 2017
If you were around back in the days when posting to this blog was more than an annual event, you'll remember Tonka.

He was rather more famous for his cartoon alter ego than anything else, but he was a very real friend to many. to me he was an integral part of my life and my world. And on Friday, April 21, 2017 that part of me was torn away, leaving a void that will never be fully filled.

I always knew the day would come when I would have to let him go; such is the nature of life with a dog. That's just the cruel sense of irony the universe has works. He'd had some health issues late in his life, but had always bounced back, even the times when I was sure he wouldn't. But this time, they told me that even surgery would be more risk than reward -- even if it succeeded. And even that assumed that there were no further issues that weren't detectable by visual examination.

Faced with that prognosis, there was really only one alternative. He was not going to get better. He would only get worse, and spend what little time I could buy him suffering from an assortment of problem any one of which could send him over the brink with little or no warning.

So I made the call I always knew, but somehow never believed, I would have to make. He left this realm peacefully, surrounded by people who loved him and cared about him. And the last thing he heard before he breathed his last was my voice telling him I loved him.

When you bring a dog into your life, a bargain is struck. Tonka never failed to deliver on his part of that bargain; and Friday last, it was my turn to deliver on mine. I was there when he took his first breath in this life, I owed it to him to be there for his last, and to make sure that his passing was as gentle and painless as possible. Knowing this, and knowing it was the only humane choice, does nothing to dull the pain of loss. It does not stop me form second guessing whether I waited too long or not long enough. But I always figured he would tell me when it was time to let go, and everything in the week leading up to his last ride was telling me he was ready to be done.

One day, I hope, the countless number of great memories of our time together will crowd out the singular horrible memory of those last moments. Because I would do it all over again, even knowing how the story ends. I wouldn't ever trade the time I had with him for a chance to avoid the pain of losing him. And it's not even close. I have never had a better friend.

Travel well, Tonka, and I'll see you on the other side. I love you pal.

Update 5/18/17: Tonka's "Auntie Daryl" posted about him here. She used to send him special cookies on his birthday that he really loved. Thanks D. Much love!

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