(The below drawing was done for me of my little dog Cricket by my dear talented friend Jonny Binkard)
My sweet little 15-year-old Pomeranian, Cricket died at 2 AM. She had been coughing a lot, and had heart failure, but she was doing pretty good with the meds I got for her. Last night she passed out, and after that she was struggling to breath and wheezing. I have a close family friend who happens to be my veterinarian as well, who came to my home and we sent her to her great reward. I am sad, but at peace. It happened so fast, but she did not suffer much until the very end. We all know that someday we have to say goodbye to our pets.
I got her the first year I was married. I did not get married until I was 44. I was that fat girl everyone loved yet never dated, I was everyone’s friend. I met Paul on the internet right after I had lost 200 pounds. He asked me to marry him, I said yes, because I thought no one else would ask me. He was a nice guy, but I was not ready to be married, and we struggled. Cricket was a rescue, she chose us, she rescued us. Both of my parents died while we were married as well as my favorite aunt who had Alzheimers and I watched over in the nursing home. Cricket was the thing that connected us. Paul loved her, and she adored him. They went everywhere together. It was endearing, seeing my 6 foot 2 inch 280 pound husband with a little black Pomeranian. Soon shortly after we married, Paul started having grand maul seizures and we also discovered he had a serious heart problem. Paul suddenly died at work one day after we had been married only 7 years at the young age of 52. I was a 50 year old widow.
After Paul died, I gained all the weight back plus an extra 100 pounds. I closed my beauty shop and just shut down. I took some classes at the local Community College, but even that became too difficult to mobilize anymore. I spent the next 7 years in my house, rarely getting out, and in bed most of my days. I ballooned up to 537 pounds. Nothing had a purpose, I had no purpose. I was always the caretaker, the friend, mostly in service to everyone around me. I was a hairdresser, a service job. I loved doing that for the most part, but I forgot to take care of me as well. So when everyone died, I was lost. I felt worthless and useless. I had no purpose anymore.
I have a plethora of friends. I don’t know why I am so blessed, but I am. I don’t have any family, so I guess God filled in the missing part of my life with friends. But as thankful as I was with all the beautiful friends, I really missed family. Cricket and Lily my little maltase were my girls. They were family. I went through the hardest parts of my life with them.
My friend all prayed for me, and kept trying to help every way they could. My survival is due to my friends who went way beyond their responsibility as a friend. Sometimes when you are loved more than you love yourself that’s all you need to see you have value.
I read on Sean Anderson’s blog “Diary of a Winning Loser” just the day before I had to let go of Cricket, about the awful accident in that parade in Oklahoma, Seans hometown. he wrote this in his blog
“Normally, no matter what happens in the world, this blog carries on without missing a beat. It’s that way for a reason. Never again will I use the tragedies of the world to excuse self-destructive behavior, as in “with everything that’s happened, it makes what I’m doing seem insignificant in the big picture. I’ll revisit this whole taking extraordinary care thing another time, when things are better.” This type of self-enabling thought process is disguised as a selfless act of concern.
How would not taking care improve what’s happened? It doesn’t. This thought process is guaranteed to keep us down, because when things get better, something else happens, somewhere.”
I remembered that reading today when I just wanted to throw in the towel and order a pizza instead of making something healthy to eat. Those words rang loud in my head. I am so grateful for Sean’s ability to speak his truth. People need people. We all have something to offer each other, and it often happens when we are not even trying or even aware.
Cricket was my last connection to my past life. She symbolizes so many things in my life. All things in my life are becoming new. I’m learning from my past and using the lessons I learned to push me in to my new beginning. I will remember how she laid on my bed and patiently allowed me to cry in her fur. I will take the unconditional love my little Cricket gave so freely and see I am worth loving.