Story by Maria Henry Gay
Well, today didn’t go as we hoped but it’s in the hardest of times we learn the best lessons and feel the most gratitude.
Buffy was scheduled to have her teeth cleaned and removed today but Dr. Mac had a gut feeling she needed to look at some lab work before putting her under anesthesia. She was right; Buffy showed signs of advanced kidney failure so anesthesia was not an option and as a family we decided that the kindest and most loving thing to do would be to let her go before she lost her will to live and stopped eating and drinking.
I wouldn’t have dreamed of leaving Robbie out of this decision or not allowing him to be part of the entire process so I immediately went and picked him up from school. On the way there he told me he wanted to be the one to hold her when she went to heaven. And of course, I gave him that honor. On the way home I told him how proud I was of him for understanding the importance of caring for old animals and helping to make sure they never ever suffer.
This is what he said… (And for those of you who don’t know, Robbie was adopted from the foster care system after years of severe abuse and neglect.)
“I know how it feels not to be loved or cared for and I don’t want any animal of mine to ever feel that way. It’s only sad for us when they go to heaven. It’s a happy day for them. Thank you for being proud of me. Are you ok, Mom?”
From the mouths of babes.
(As our story is being shared more and more I feel like I need to add a little more context and also give you a deeper glimpse into the heart of my son. We adopt senior dogs. Robbie LOVES adopting senior dogs. He is sadly aware the longer a child remains in foster care the less likely they are to be adopted. He told me once “if all you guys had wanted was a baby, you would have never gotten me.” He relates to our “old people” (that’s what we call our senior dogs) in much the same way.
He has also reminded me on several occasions that it doesn’t matter how long you have something for how much you love it. I asked him what he meant and he said “well you’ve only known me for two years but you love me like it’s been forever.” Yes, my son is the coolest.)
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