Monday, December 13, 2010

known by heart

ransom

every skin fold. every hungry grunt. every "i need you to pet me grunt" and the distinctive "come on guys i wanna be on the couch too" grunt. every chewbacca whine. every snore and sigh. the meaning in your ears laid back against your head as you swagger to greet me at the door. the "look back". the carrot induced head tilt. your various panting- some born of anxiety, some brought on by warmly snuggling close and needing a move from the couch to the cool tile of the kitchen floor. some just big smiles and happiness, tongue hanging out, hamming it up for your audience. all your names and from where they came: Poopy Puppy, Boober Doozer, Boob, Stinker Do, Buddy, Lean To, Licky Larry, Mr. Fat Pants. your sense of humor. your hot breath in my face. your yeasty paws too red from licking. your scars. the velvet soft of your ears, your under belly. the patches of lost hair. one spotted ear, the other not. your teary eyes. your sneezes. that tiny umbilical hernia you've had since day one. how you'll choose a foot to sit on any day of the week over the floor. the dry patches on the top of your nose where your tongue can't reach. that one paw you'd rather no one touch- ever- the others, you don't seem to mind so much. the weight of you in my lap. the way you kick your back leg in half-sleep to make more room for yourself. how much you adore G and how intently you listen when either of us talk to you. the way you dream. your shifty eyes and sleepy blinks. your passion for chew toys. how totally good you are about taking medicine without any fuss. the way you shake when first out of bed, and just after we get outside. your opposition to bath time, thinking that running and jumping in your chair will save you from it, every.single.time. your love of the towel dry and tolerance of the blow dryer and just plain giving in to the nail clippers. how you trot around all full of yourself after that bath, waiting for the reward you know is coming. the way you huff as you climb the stairs. the manner in which you eat scarf down your meals. and almost take off a finger when we say "easy" as we hand you a table scrap. how you subtly let us know it's time for bed. the way you wait for me at the top of the stairs. your wiggling and shifting. how any halloween costume completely immobilizes you like a full body cast so that you must be reminded that yes, you can still walk. your love of the back scratch. the way your lips fall when you are laying on your back, upside down. the wind in your face. the way your nose twitches as you face that wind, taking it in. those 360's at lightning speed in the yard in your younger years. your loathing of "walks". your fear of objects- like: suitcases, boxes, packages you've never seen. but especially the suitcase. how you bark to keep those objects at bay. your compassion. the way you long to be near me. how you will climb over the person sitting next to me to get there. how you shoulder my tears. sometimes licking them away. sometimes hugging them hard. sometimes with your head on my chest, looking into me. but always, carrying them. your bravery. your joy. the firm and soft parts of your tumors. your silly expressions. the way that one tooth gets stuck on your upper lip. your wet kisses on my calves, my arms, my face and neck. how deeply you love. how you believe everyone is here to see you because probably they are :0) how you loved E from day one. how you waited patiently for that love to be returned. your desire to be involved with all that we are doing, especially if it involves food (from preparation to meal time to clean up, which you are thrilled to help with). your love of sleep. your ravenous appetite. for a new treat. for a new day.

for life.



(the decision to withdraw chemo was made today, in confidence, and with hope for his best days ahead until his days with us are done).


42 comments:

  1. Once again your post about your Ransom brought me to tears...I love your love for him. I will be thinking of you and of Ransom in the days and weeks that lay ahead. May your deep love for each other comfort you as you walk this journey together. Big hugs to you both.

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  2. I'm so very sorry. He is very special and very loved.

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  3. Sitting here with tears, not knowing what to say.

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  4. absolutely beautiful heartfelt post. my heart and thoughts go out to you....

    hugs,

    dawn

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  5. the way your tears fall silently down your cheeks, the way your heart breaks when you imagine life without him, the way your soul aches when you hear the echo where his presence used to be...the way I hold you in my heart and cradle your grief...

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  6. What a beautiful tribute to a dear friend.

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  7. What a beautiful tribute to a dear friend.

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  8. Ransom has been a big part of a life well-loved. He gives and receives love with gusto.

    Oh, that I would be loved and remembered for my life, as Ransom will be for his.

    Blessing you with peace, in the belief that you and Ransom will be together again. In the blink of an eye ...

    ((hugs))

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  9. K - I don't know what to say. My heart broke two years ago and I still think of my baby Tiger everyday. Prayers for all of you.

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  10. That's such a tough moment. I am so sorry. He is very special.

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  11. so.so.sorry. praying for a rally...

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  12. Completely loved, lovable, irreplacecable and un-repeatable. Jay says all the memories will always be with us and every conversation will carry his spirit with us always. Mom will scoop him up and protect him. Jay will do penance for the garbage bad incident.

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  13. It isn't often that my hubby bares his heart....he just did.
    Sending loving thoughts for some wonderful licky, lovey days ahead.

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  14. You are such a dear soul my friend. I wish you grace during this period.

    Much love to you.

    Lea
    xo

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  15. Beautiful post, he will always be with you. Praying for the four of you.

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  16. I had always envisioned Ransom present on the day we would meet. After introducing myself to you, "G" and "E", I saw myself bending down to greet the four-legged member of the family. Just watching his pics for all these years has given me an sense of how his wrinkly, chubby skin would feel like in my hands:0)

    There are a million directions I can take my comments in, but to be truthful, none, at least right now, feels more authentic or compelling than the other. And of the things I can write, they would just be a repeat of those things I've commented previously about. Know this: I'm here for you and your family. If there is anything I can do when the moment comes or as the moment nears, please don't be ashamed to ask.

    BTW, a few years ago I purchased a book called Letters to a Man in the Fire by famed author/ professor Reynolds Price. The entire book, although small in page numbers, is actually a letter Price wrote to a young man (Jim Fox) who had been forced to withdraw from medical school when a persistent cancer resurfaced. The letter was in response to Fox's sizable questions of God's existence and whether this God cared about his creation. Price answers to the best of his abilities, but one of the most moving sections of the letter comes when he briefly discusses mystical experiences, and recounts the experience of an elderly woman who had written to Price years earlier describing her's:

    "...such inner events are much more common than people dare to admit. They carry their own authentication, I think, in the atmosphere of complete simplicity and great depth that surrounds them. Mine came at a time of medical stress, during some exhausting tests before an operation. I can't say 'it came' though; it was rather I went out to meet it...This time I went out along the Galilee hills and came to a crowd gathered around a man, and I stood on the outskirts intending to listen. But he looked over the crowd at me and then said, 'What do you want?' I said, 'Could you send someone to come with me and help me stand up after the tests, because I can't manage alone?' He thought for a minute and said, 'How would it be if I came?'"

    I can't tell you how moving I find that last sentence. Anyway, I'm not sure how relevant this snippet of the book is to everything that you're going through right now, but I reflect on it almost on a daily basis. Perhaps (I think) it's because it somehow reminds me that death is both a robber and a cheat. Robber because it ruthlessly and cowardly steals our loved ones from us, and a cheat because it fools us into thinking its had the last word when it in actuality it doesn't even exist.

    God Bless. Love from me to your family.

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  17. He is your best friend. I know you will cherish every single moment you have left together. I'm so sorry. :(

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  18. In spite of the hard stuff...he's truly blessed. Because he is and will always be so completely and utterly loved.

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  19. I can feel the heaviness in your heart, I know it well. Sending hugs and keeping many prayers for all of you.

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  20. What a tough day. What a beautiful, lovely dog. May you enjoy your remaining time together.....

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  21. Anyone that doesn't understand the immense love and bond between a person and their "heart" dog needs to read your words.

    Sending blessings to all of you as you enjoy each and every day with Ransom!

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  22. Hugs to you for loving him so much. You are doing the right thing K.

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  23. Ohh, K..
    My thoughts and prayers are with you!

    Krista D

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  24. I'm sorry. I had to make the decision for my Jake just over 5 years ago. He had cancer in his spine and his intestines. What amazes me is how much he still shared his love and, even on his final day, he made it easy for me. A dog's love is so special.

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  25. Hugs to you friend!!! I have no words but to say that I understnad and weep with you!

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  26. I hope you will also prepare E well, when the time comes. Ransom's absence may be just as traumatic for her, if not more so. Take care!

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  27. I'm sorry you have to go through this. At the same time, I'm happy you are living it the way you are and loving him. Cyberhugs to you, E, G, and the Boob.

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  28. not to worry serline, we have been preparing E for some time, and she has some understanding of what is coming. but she is 5, so for her, there is no permanence to death which will actually make it easier for her i hope (and in truth, death isn't permanent). she often says, 'when ransom is die, we get a new dog'. that's sort of where she is. she has expressed she will miss him too :)

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  29. Sitting here with tears...sending you BIG HUGS...what a beautiful post, how you remember everything that makes him so special...

    hugs my friend...

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  30. I am so sorry that this is where the road has led.

    He was loved- he will always be loved. How many of us can say the same about everyone we know.
    A wonderful tribute to a good friend.

    Suzan

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  31. amazing words, as always...they truly read like music. beautiful k.

    squeeze licky larry for me.

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  32. Hugs!!

    Thinking of you all...
    I wish I had words. Just know you're in my thoughts and prayers.

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  33. K,
    I had to stop and come back and read the rest of your beautiful letter about Ransom. It brought me to tears. Hugs and wishing all of you lots of grunts, licks, scratches and toothy smiles.

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  34. thank you so much everyone. from my heart. he is my boy and it means so much that you all "get" how hard this will be.

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  35. Well that was about the most beautiful tribute to a friend I've ever read. So sorry you're nearing the end of your time with him, but you have wonderful, enduring memories.

    Oh, and check out the book "Dog Heaven" by Cynthia Rylant -- it may help E with the loss of her doggie. It really helped my girls (ages 4 & 5) when our doggie went to heaven in September.

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  36. You are right, you'll never be ready, it's going to hurt like you can't imagine (except you can because you lost your mom already), but I've learned one thing from my most wonderful vet:

    You will know when the time comes to euthanize. You won't have to ask anyone because YOU will know it because you know your dog. I didn't really get this until I was there and found it two be true, not once now, but three times. With my fourth, I knew I didn't have to do it, that she would go peacefully when whe was ready and she did. While I was at church, she went to the place I'd prepared, laid herself down with her head on the pillow, and died. She never went to that spot before and I'd prepared it 4 days before she died, just for her and she knew it.

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  37. I know how special Ransom is to you and how difficult the decision must have been to stop chemo. Sending you much love and strength.

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  38. Hoping he is still going strong and life is good with the family!

    Alyzabeth's Mommy

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