Saying goodbye

13 04 2015

In a matter of seconds, I went from having a life depend on me, to not having that responsibility any more. I went from having unconditional love, to watching it fade away. I went from being someone’s “mum”, to just being me.

I’ve talked before about the health problems that Maddy suffered. Back in January 2014, she was given 2-6 months to live. But every time we took her to the vet, thinking her time was up, they’d find something extra to throw at her. Another dice to throw.

And so many times she fought back and proved her prognosis wrong.

But finally, on the 9th April 2015, 15 months after her original prognosis, there was no bounce. The fight had left her. She was no longer enjoying life. It was time to let her go.

Some people might think that knowing that she was on borrowed time must have made the decision, and subsequent grief less painful. Or that we were more prepared for it.

But the truth is, it was probably the opposite. Because she’d battled on for so much longer than expected. Because she seemed to defy the vets every time we saw them. She seemed indestructible, even immortal at times.

And I guess part of me, deep down, was wishing that she would just keep doing that. That she’d go on forever, like some kind of super beagle. Cape and all.

People had told me that I’d know when the time was right. We’d know when she was ready. That she’d tell us. I simply couldn’t fathom how. How on earth would I know, or be ready to make that call? How would I be able to decide to say goodbye? For the very last time.


In the end, it was pretty obvious. Something changed. There was no response to the drugs that usually gave her respite for a few days. Her perpetual inquisition, or FOMO as we used to call her, was no longer there. The spark was gone.

Other events followed overnight that merely cemented the fact that it was time. There was more suffering that I would never want to see, or for her to experience again.

We decided to wave her off to Rainbow Bridge. Where I know she’s waiting for us. One day.

So maybe it wasn’t our final goodbye after all.

Goodbye, my sweet little Maddy. Now’s your chance to chase rabbits to your wonky little heart’s content. Run free beautiful girl.


The Rainbow Bridge

Just this side of heaven is a place called Rainbow Bridge. When an animal dies that has been especially close to someone here, that pet goes to Rainbow Bridge.

There are meadows and hills for all of our special friends so they can run and play together. There is plenty of food, water and sunshine, and our friends are warm and comfortable. All the animals who had been ill and old are restored to health and vigour; those who were hurt or maimed are made whole and strong again, just as we remember them in our dreams of days and times gone by.

The animals are happy and content, except for one small thing; they each miss someone very special to them, who had to be left behind.

They all run and play together, but the day comes when one suddenly stops and looks into the distance. His bright eyes are intent; His eager body quivers. Suddenly he begins to run from the group, flying over the green grass, his legs carrying him faster and faster. You have been spotted, and when you and your special friend finally meet, you cling together in joyous reunion, never to be parted again.

The happy kisses rain upon your face; your hands again caress the beloved head, and you look once more into the trusting eyes of your pet, so long gone from your life but never absent from your heart.

Then you cross Rainbow Bridge together

Author unknown





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