Our Devastating Loss

This is a free flow thought type of post. I can’t stop to formulate much more than that right now. I will continue to write more in the days to follow, celebrating Brody’s short but happy life, but for now this is mostly for me. To start working out my feelings and emotions. Hopefully it can act as something of a healing post for others who have experienced or will experience this same type of loss. The number of emotions coursing through me right now is incredible, as is the variety of them. Anyway, here it is:

This morning I was crying over a bee that I had accidentally whacked with the weed-eater I was using. I grieved for it. I told it and the universe I was sorry. A few hours later and I was grieving for an even bigger personal loss. We lost our sweet Brody boy today. It happened in a chain of events that are just too ridiculous and far-reaching to even try to explain them. All I know is that I let him out of the room. If I hadn’t, he’d still be right here next to me. Sleeping on the bed. But he’s not. He ran from the room and bolted the door when someone came over. I tried to call him back but he wouldn’t come. I made the decision to run back inside to get help. Maybe if I hadn’t, he’d still be here. I grabbed my keys and jumped in my car. I should’ve just run after him. Maybe I could’ve caught him. Instead he darted out in front of a truck. A truck that was driving way too fast and that didn’t even bother to stop after it hit our baby boy. The thing is, the moment he took off running down the road, I knew in my heart something was different. He’s done it many times before. He’s a shelter dog and his thing is running off and, well, chasing cars. He’s done it before but this time was different. This time he didn’t come back to us as we called, as Nikki and my sister chased after him down our road. He ran around, ran into a cul-de-sac then bolted right passed those two and into the road. He ran headlong into it. He was chasing cars. He was doing what we’d been trying to break him of. A few days ago we took all three pups on a walk and whenever a car drove by I tried having him sit and be calm as it went by. It’s been our fear since we got him that he’d be hit by a car. If only I’d known more about how to train him and break him of his deadly habit. If only I’d tried harder. If only I had called him better or harder or changed my voice. If only I hadn’t opened that damn door. We’ve caught him before by opening the car door and tell him we were going for a ride. I didn’t have keys on me this time. He took off running and I knew somewhere deep down in my gut that this was different. I was afraid. When I jumped out of my car at the spot where I saw Nikki and my sister running through the woods, that tiny patch of 15 feet of woods between our quiet street and that horrible busy one. “He’s been hit!” Nikki told me. I ran through the trees and saw him lying there. The other two dogs were milling about too because they’d come running after us as well. We grabbed them so they wouldn’t be hit as well. I went over to Brody and he was lying there, blood pouring out of his mouth. Nikki grabbed him up and we jumped into the car. We brought the other dogs with us because we didn’t want to take the time to get them back in the house. I put on my hazards and blew past people on that same dangerous road, trying to reach the nearest vet as quickly as possible. Seconds mattered, I thought. The vet is only 2 minutes away. We jumped out of the car (I realized later I’d never even turned it off) and ran up to the building. A couple outside with their dog said the place didn’t open until 2:30. It was 2:32. I pounded on the door. A vet tech opened the door and we ran him in. We kept telling people he’d been hit. We were let into the exam room and someone already in there was quickly ushered out. The vet told us his hind leg was broken. Okay, we’ll set up a fund and pay for it somehow. We’ll get it all paid for. He’s a good boy. He has to make it. He has to. He’s our boy. He had blood coming out of his mouth, and a broken jaw. We can fix it. He aspirated on some blood. Can we suck it out? Do X-rays? The vet gave him a shot to help his blood clot. His head jerked and I got scared. I couldn’t even cry. My eyes were dry. Nothing was coming. Nikki was bawling. The vet said he’d keep him there and take X-rays when he could. Brody was wrapped in a blanket and placed in a cage. We were told we could talk to him a bit. We pet him and kissed him and told him we loved him. Nikki asked him not to go. I told him it was going too be okay. More pets and love. He breathed in gasps. I was even more scared. I’ve seen many animals die before. Of old age or sickness. I’ve seen it coming. But I know what death looks like. No, no. He can be okay. We can save him. I HAVE to save him! He’s our boy! He’s OURS! I called on Smudge and Brandy (dogs who have passed on but seem to stick around our world, watching over things, our guardian angels) to please come and help Brody. My silly human emotions make me feel guilty about it now but at that moment, I felt a peace come over me and then he was gone. I went and told the vet tech and the vet came to check. He confirmed it and said he was sorry. The vet techs said they were sorry. They cried for him and for us, though they’d never met any of us before. I didn’t want Brody placed in a bag but the blood from his mouth started dripping on me so we had him put in a bag. His little body was so heavy. That little body seemed to weigh 100 pounds. The people in the waiting room looked sorry too. We drove back home, numb, his heavy little body weighing down on my lap. The other pups didn’t seem to understand. Though I suppose it’s actually that they better understand. They know he isn’t gone forever. I know that. In my heart I know that. But that doesn’t stop the pain. It never does. It never will. The pain may lessen but it will never go away. Everyone who’s lost anyone knows that. And this was our boy and it wasn’t supposed to happen like this. He was supposed to spend at least 15 years with us and go on adventures with Spunky and be a good spokesdoggy for rescued animals everywhere. He was a rescue. He was rescued. We had saved him from the pound. His life was supposed to be better from then on. But he’s dead. And I feel like I’ve failed him. I can tell myself it’s not my fault but if I just hadn’t opened the door to the room to see who was at the front door. If only, if only, if only. The list goes on forever. I can’t change what happened. I wish I could. Nikki keeps hoping to wake up. This isn’t fair. I helped my gramma rescue him. I tried to train him for her but he got overwhelming. So we took him in, under the guise that we would train him and give him back or find him another good home. But the truth is, we fell in love and he was ours. Nikki even told him this morning that he was ours. He was coming with us to Florida, or wherever we lived. I should’ve tried harder to chase him down. I shouldn’t have run back into the house. I should’ve chased him myself, called him more, flung myself at him. I didn’t know this was going to happen. I just want our precious boy back. But he’s gone. Or his body is gone. He won’t get to have fun with us, go on more adventures with us, smile at us. Or more likely we won’t get to have fun with him, go on more adventures with him, have him smile at us. Our beautiful, joyful, soulful puppy has left us. Much too soon. I don’t think we’ll ever truly get over it.

Our Beautiful Brody Boy. We miss and love you, always!

Our Beautiful Brody Boy. We miss and love you, always!