I did take a lot of pictures today. At first I didn't want to, but I am glad I did. While it was by far one of the hardest days of my life, it was one of the most beautiful.
Our friends John and Becky and their two adorable boys happened to be in town visiting us this weekend. They ended up being the PERFECT people to be here with us. Becky is a fellow infertility sister, and she just lost her Annie about a year ago. Annie was also an "infertility" dog for Becky so their presence was wonderful. Not only did they just get it, but they were a great distraction when it was just getting too heavy. Around 10am, we all went down to feed the chickens and check for eggs.
Isaac, Jonah, Joshua, and Sidge
The boys with Scrubs
An absolutely precious moment with Isaac and Scrubs
Becky had an idea to paint some rocks for Scrubs. This turned out to be a wonderful activity. We were waiting for the vet and not sure what to do with ourselves.
Isaac wanted his to be black and white like his dog.
I love this picture of Abigail and Scrubs.
After that, we moved over to the garage where we told the kids that Scrubs was going to die soon. We did not tell them that the Vet was putting him down. We simply said we knew his time was coming. We took some time to let each of the kids say good bye. Hannah was too young. Abigail wasn't quite able to understand. But the boys definitely knew what was happening. Both Isaac and Sidge grieve differently, and it was equally painful to watch both of them process this.
JB and his dog.
I love this picture.
Around 2:30pm, Dr. Bailey showed up. We have only known her for two months, but we know we have found our life-long vet. I love her. She is so compassionate and sweet and just wonderful. The kids went inside to watch a movie with John and Becky and their kids while JB and I stayed with Scrubs. We told him what a good boy he was. We cried over him. We held him while she gave him a shot to put him to sleep and then while she started an IV to let him go.
I had a lot of worries and questions about whether we were doing the right thing. But God made it perfectly clear to us during the final 24 hours that we were doing the right thing. Scrubs has continued to do pretty well during the two months since his terminal diagnosis. But on Thursday, we really noticed a decline. JB said we needed to do it soon. We didn't want him to have a painful last few days. We wanted him to go out on top. I had to remind myself that I was his advocate. I was the person able to stop his pain. And I was determined not to be selfish in my decision.
Scrubs passed away peacefully around 3pm on a Friday afternoon here on the farm.
I cannot tell you how wonderful it felt to know we would get to bury him here on the farm -- where we will be forever. It mean so much to me to do that. The two Johns had already dug a place for him. We got him buried and then brought the kids up to say good bye.
We brought a bunch of rocks up to lay around the grave. We buried him along the road that leads between our house and the grandparents house -- the two families he loved most of all.
Grandpa and Grandma were out of town. This was honestly probably for the best as I don't think I could have dealt with Grandpa saying good bye to Scrubs. The two of them had an inseparable bond. Grandpa surprised us by having a sign already made for Scrubs. He said he has a more permanent one in mind, but it was so wonderful to have this to put up at his grave. It was just perfect for him.
The Connors family joined us for our little "funeral." It felt just right to have them there with us.
It was Sidge that has taken to calling Scrubs "Best dog ever." In fact, when we told him we have plans to get two new puppies in a few weeks, he grew concerned and we all agreed that no other dog would ever take that title. He and I both made similar rocks expressing our love for this dog.
While Sidge will cry and grieve very openly, our Isaac is always fairly private. It was no surprise when he took off from the funeral site to go run with the chickens. He truly finds peace with the chickens, and we knew this was what he needed.
After Dr. Bailey left, we finished our evening with a dinner and trip to Dairy Queen for a "we love Scrubs" ice cream fest.
Now it is the evening and the tears that have been at rest for a few hours are coming back in full force. I hesitated sharing about Scrubs on Facebook and on my Blog because I wasn't sure if I could do it today or if it was appropriate, but as always, writing is how I process. It is how I grieve. And this Blog is my place. Years from now I will remember these memories through this Blog and that is so important to me.
I know he was "just a dog" and that some people, like me before I ever had a pet, will not understand the depth of the pain. But that's okay. This pain is deep for me. It is running through my whole body. It doubled me over during my run this morning in a fit of sobs. It left me lying next to Scrubs during his last moments telling him what a good boy he is.
I truly believe Scrubs is in heaven. He is waiting for me there. He is playing with the Connors dog Annie and eating peanut butter and socks to his heart's content.
There will probably be more about Scrubs on this blog in the coming weeks and months then most people want to read, but I really don't care. I need to remember him. I need to memorialize him for myself. This dog was my companion. My comforter. My protector. My first child.
I love you Scrubs SO MUCH. I will never be the same because you were in my life. Thank you for being my dog.