Monday, November 29, 2010

the Mac Daddy

I'm Still Here

Friend, please don't mourn for me
I'm still here, though you don't see.
I'm right by your side each night and day
and within your heart I long to stay.

My body is gone but I'm always near.
I'm everything you feel, see or hear.
My spirit is free, but I'll never depart
as long as you keep me alive in your heart.

I'll never wander out of your sight-
I'm the brightest star on a summer night.
I'll never be beyond your reach-
I'm the warm moist sand when you're at the beach.

I'm the colorful leaves when fall comes around
and the pure white snow that blankets the ground.
I'm the beautiful flowers of which you're so fond,
The clear cool water in a quiet pond.

I'm the first bright blossom you'll see in the spring,
The first warm raindrop that April will bring.
I'm the first ray of light when the sun starts to shine,
and you'll see that the face in the moon is mine.

When you start thinking there's no one to love you,
you can talk to me through the Lord above you.
I'll whisper my answer through the leaves on the trees,
and you'll feel my presence in the soft summer breeze.

I'm the hot salty tears that flow when you weep
and the beautiful dreams that come while you sleep.
I'm the smile you see on a baby's face.
Just look for me, friend, I'm everyplace!

This poem, and the story of Rainbow Bridge always help me get through this time of year. Two years ago yesterday, Joshua & I said goodbye to our sweet Brittany Spaniel, Mac Daddy.

Unlike our crazy Sookie, Mac was calm and docile. The people who run the local kennel (and bought my family's old house) gave us Mac my freshman year of college. They knew we wanted a dog but didn't have the time or space to raise a puppy, so Mac became ours.
He wasn't much on playing, but he did like to run and snuggle. Him and my roommate's dog Chloe were partners in crime. They would take turns ripping the stuffing out of their toys and get into all kinds of mischief together when left unattended.
Despite being so young (he was 3), Mac I took Mac to Albermarle Animal Hospital on Monday, November 24th after he'd been vomiting and having horrible diarrhea for a few days. This wasn't abnormal for Mac since he (like Sookie) ate everything in site and had a sensitive stomach, but we decided it had been going on too long.
On arrival, our vet Dr. Gregg, immediately thought that maybe Mac had gotten into some antifreeze, which is a common cause of kidney issues. But, our baby hadn't gotten near any antifreeze and didn't have the drunken-like stature like most pets who have ingested it.
We were so blessed that a pet urologist was at the clinic that day, so they shaved off Mac's beautiful white & orange hair on his swollen tummy and did an ultrasound.
Mac's pancreas was swollen and inflamed and because of the pancreatitis, his kidneys had also started malfunctioning. Dr. Gregg told us that he would do his best to treat Mac and to leave him over night to push IV fluids and monitor his progress.
The next day Mac wasn't a lot better. He was still lethargic and shaky and hardly noticed when Josh and I came to visit.
Wednesday, Dr. Gregg had to go to Mississippi to visit family for Thanksgiving so Mac was transferred to Tarboro Animal Clinic, another pet clinic in our area. Dr. Fong told us she would continue treatment and hope things got better.
They didn't.
We visited Mac Wednesday before Thanksgiving at the clinic and he looked terrible. He was swollen from the fluids, his eyes were glassy and he didn't even want to walk or stand up. I cried and cried the whole way home.
Thursday during Thanksgiving dinner, one of the vet techs called to let us know Mac's enzymes hadn't gotten any better. We knew a decision was ahead of us.
The next day, we had a home ECU football game, Josh and I visited the vet together and after seeing Mac we decided he'd been through entirely too much and we were being selfish to keep him here suffering like he was. We told Dr. Fong to put our 3-year-old dog to sleep and we rubbed him while Mac took his last little breath.
It was BY FAR the hardest decision I have ever had to be a part of. We had Mac cremated, we just didn't think we'd be able to handle driving his body home to bury.
Josh and I went on to the football game in attempts to get our minds off of the sad events of our morning.
We still miss our first dog, but Sookie does a great job of trying to fill his shoes. We saved a lock of his fur and have it inside a little tin with his ashes. People may think we're crazy for paying so much money to cremate an animal, but Mac was our fur baby and he was a huge part of our lives.

The day we brought Mac home
i heart both my loves

Me {and the freshmen 15}, Mac & Josh - Christmas 2007

Mac, snuggling with his daddy

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