I have been trying to sit down and write, but I can’t seem to find the words to describe what this last week has felt like for me. Every time I try to write anything about it, whether it’s a blog post, an Instagram post, or even a simple text to my mom, I start crying. I even tried writing about something else, but nothing felt authentic or real, so I could never finish it. Writing used to be my safe place, but I guess I just haven’t found my way all the way back to that yet. Instead, I’ve just been avoiding it.
I suppose since I am writing this now, I need to try and put it into words. Even if the tears are pooling in my eyes as I try to type, threatening to break free down my cheeks, but here goes. Our oldest dog, my girl that has been with me only ten years, has been diagnosed with lymphoma. I woke to find her neck swollen last week, so we rushed her in. They took blood from both her body and her lymph nodes and they found cancer. We don’t know how long we have left with her, but we know that it is shorter than we ever imagined.
For those that don’t know, my husband and I bought a beagle in October 2010 and named her Zoey. She was our first dog together (we were only together approximately 10 months at the time), but we had no idea that she would start our family. She has been through the birth of all three of my boys. She would wake up with me when they were crying in the other room in their cribs. She would follow them around in case they dropped food and try to clean their cheeks if I missed a crumb. She would patiently play ball with them and share her bed with them. She would even join me on walks or for naps when hubby would take the boy(s) to give me a break. She has been my partner in crime ever since that day we found her in 2010.
She even tolerated it when we brought in a new beagle puppy 4 years ago to be the newest addition to our family. Although she never acted motherly towards our younger beagle, Sam, she quickly became a play pal and best friend for her. Even last week, Zoey was outside with her boys and Sam, chasing the soccer ball they were kicking around the yard. She was nipping at my hubby’s ankles whenever he tried to steal the soccer ball from the boys. She was acting as their defence.
I suppose I should be grateful that her diagnosis does not mean she will be leaving us this week. They think she may be with us for at least another 8 to 12 weeks, but how do you explain to your first dog, the one that started you on the path to becoming a family, why you always start crying when you go to cuddle her? Sometimes I feel like she already knows it’s coming. She has always had a way of looking at you, making you feel like she was trying to talk to you or understood what you were saying. She has been looking at me with a sad look for the last couple of months. I was hoping she was just slowing down because of an old back injury (she had a herniated disk two years ago), but unfortunately it would seem I was wrong.
Needless to say, my mind has been having difficulty concentrating this week. So writing a post here or working on my book has been painstaking to sit down and do. My duties at my day-job keep me very busy, with constant interactions with people or trying to progress my many projects, so at least that keeps me busy during my weekdays. I also tried to listen to a five day challenge that Tony Robbins and Dean Graziosi were putting on this past week, as usually a good personal development live helps me stay more positive and improves my mindset. This time, however, it just annoyed me. I don’t know if it was because of my sadness over Zoey, my swamped work week, or feeling like I am falling behind on my goals with my book, but the entire challenge just felt like a giant sales pitch. I likely wasn’t in the right mindset for it, but that has been my general feeling about a lot of these “free” webinars and workshops being put on lately by “influencers”. So I became annoyed very quickly and stopped paying any attention to their lives after the first day and deleted all of their emails as soon as they came in. I have a full-time job, I’m a mom of three boys under the age of ten, and I’m trying to become a published author on the side … I don’t have time for 2 hour long sales pitches for five days straight, so don’t waste my time.
Anyways, aside from THAT rant, I am trying to force myself to come out of this sadness. I know that we have some time with Zoey and we need to make the most of it. We are hoping we can get her some medication to keep her comfortable as long as possible. Then we are thinking of making it the “Summer of Zoey”. I bought her a new outside bed because she loves to be outside in the summer. We always call her our rechargeable dog because she likes to spend hours outside shifting between napping in the sun and barking at nothing in the shade. I also bought her a Snoopy stuffy. She loves to cuddle with him and nap under the fan in my office while I work. I am debating finding her a collapsible wagon that I can put bedding into. She loves to go for walks but she just can’t last as long as she used to.
Unfortunately, I don’t think I can write anymore. Words cannot express how much Zoey has felt like a best friend over the last ten years. We will all be even more heartbroken when we have to say goodbye to her, but hopefully we will be able to make these next few months full of fun and love for her. Now I need to go find some tissues…
3 thoughts on “At a loss for words …”
My heart breaks for you and I’m welling up just reading this. I have a dog, he’s four and already he’s seen me through so much and responded in such a way that no human could. When that time comes, I wonder how I will manage the devastating grief that I know I’ll feel alongside trying to be functional with all the things I have to juggle. I’m not sure what to say but know that you’re not alone and I’m so grateful for your honesty, and as a fellow dog owner, I hope the time you have with her is absolutely precious.
Thank you so much for your comment. It is amazing how much they really impact our lives.