My dear friends and readers,
I am deeply grateful for the prayers and support I have received through comments, emails, and phone calls. I kept imagining myself surrounded by this circle of light and that was comforting.
All day yesterday I lay on the floor holding Duke, telling him how much I love him, trying to say goodbye. The vet came in the afternoon, she was very compassionate and affirmed our decision based on the test results. We lay him down on the marble tile in front of our fireplace, a favorite place of his because it is cool. First she injected pain killer, then a sedative which made him very sleepy, and then finally the sodium pentathol which released him from his body. I held him the whole time and had a little while to be with his body before the vet took him away. He will be cremated and we will have the ashes in a week or so.
The pain right now is quite awful. Duke was an amazing companion and great teacher and presence in my life. He was ten so lived a very full and good life. The hardest part for me is the suddenness of it all. My head is still spinning over the fact that he seemed fine Thursday morning. It is very hard to have a loved one torn away so quickly. The same thing happened with my mother three years ago when she landed in the ICU quite suddenly and then died five days later. I am aware of the many layers of grief I am carrying being torn open. I feel raw and undone.
I have also been thinking of a poem I wrote last February in wrestling with her death, and it applies to my loss of Duke as well:
Love and Loss
Why do I give my heart over
to things that perish?
Why does everything I love
have to one day
like dust in my fingertips?
it is the love itself that endures,
sometimes feeling solid like the earth
beneath my feet.
But more often it is like a vast sea
into which I
and fear being pulled under.
Or like a fire
in my belly,
my way in the
Many blessings, Christine
Duke, 1996-2006, with profound love for a devoted companion and soul friend, you will be missed beyond measure