Goodbye Fuzzy Baby

Momservation: Seeing your children’s hearts break over the loss of a pet is enough to swear off adopting anything else that lives outside the arthropod classification.

 

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When I got up this morning, out of habit I looked for him in his bed. He wasn’t there.

 

When I came out of the bathroom he didn’t greet me.

 

My morning routine to let him out, fix his breakfast, and give him his medicine was unnecessary and so my whole day feels off.

 

As I sit at the computer it is profoundly sad that he is not here next to me in his usual spot. He won’t be bugging me to play with him. He won’t be quietly keeping me company. He won’t be there when I take a break to give him some love.

 

And when my kids get up, just as I dried their tears last night as they cried themselves to sleep, I will start my day trying to find words that will be a salve for their broken hearts. It’ll be hard because I don’t even have the answers to heal my own.

 

We are all desperately missing Kyber. Daddy, his own heart constricted with sorrow over having to take his best hunting partner for his last ride, finally convinced us of our selfishness in keeping him around just so we wouldn’t have to face life without him.

 

He is Kyber. Our family’s yellow Lab and my fuzzy baby and he is gone. He is the reason I still haven’t seen “Marley and Me” and probably never will.

 

He was adopted, but I loved him as my own. From the moment we brought him home, all floppy eared and giant feet, we knew our hearts would never be the same. He was my first born baby, my constant companion, and owner of the softest ears I have ever felt. There is not a picture in our house or home movie where he is not somewhere in the story of our lives.

 

And after 14 ½ years of bring absolute joy to our lives, he also became the cause of one of our biggest heartaches.

 

I know he would’ve kept fighting his failing 100 year old dog body forever for us – it was simply enough for him just to be near us, but in the end he couldn’t even do that because he couldn’t get up to follow us from room to room.

 

So it was time to say goodbye.

 

But how do you tell such a vital part of your family it’s time to go? How do you explain to them that even though their heart and their mind are still strong and sharp, their crippled body just can’t sustain them anymore? How do you look your fuzzy baby in the eyes and say, “Because I love you, I’m letting you go.”?

 

Let me know if you figure it out.

 

I’ll be here trying to right my children’s world again, trying to keep them in their routine so their resilient souls can begin mending.

 

Which is achingly hard when I’m still stooping to pick up chocolate that was left where the dog could eat it and get sick; Or reaching for the licorice bucket for Kyber’s favorite treat as I do the laundry; Or still looking for him in every room of the house.

 

I can’t stop myself from absent-mindedly singing his theme song to the tune of Spiderman I created long ago: “Kyber Bo, Kyber Bo, he’s the cutest don’t you know. Runs real fast, speed of light, gives me dog kisses every night.”

 

As I sit here at the computer, I can still hear the echo of his bark trying to entice me to play, the sound I’ve told him a hundred times to “knock it off” so I can get some work done.

 

Now as I spin around in my chair to kiss his irresistible smiling face, rub his soft ears and say, “You want to play? Okay, just for a minute,” his absence cuts my heart again. Even though he’s not physically here I still softly sing him the ode the kids and I made up, aching to wrap my arms around him for the hundred millionth time. “I know a little Kyber, cute as can be, and I like to pet him, because he’s so fuzzy.”

 

My fuzzy baby is gone and 100 dog years just seems too soon to say goodbye.

 

                   

 

In memory of Kyber Bo Wheeler, a dog with his own theme song, owner of the softest ears in the world, who long ago transcended the meaning of “pet.”

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