Last Saturday our dog Nils showed strange symptoms. I noticed that he didn't celebrate food time with his normal enthusiasm. A little later I petted him on the stomach, he had this manner to turn on his back asking for a nice stomach rub. On that day, he seemed to enjoy my "treatment" as normal, but afterwards he remained strangely still on his back, which he had never done before. Later we discovered that he had quite violent cramps and he tried to vomit, but there was nothing to throw up.
I then decided to take him to the veterinary hospital as an emergency.
The vet thorougly examined Nils, with X-Ray and Ultrasound and the result was devastating. He had an extremely enlarged heart and a huge amount of liquid in his chest and the pericardium. This condition is very severe and there is no remedy.
We were given the opportunity to gather at the hospital and to say goodbye to our dear friend and then it was time to release him from his pain.
Our pain, however, was just beginning. None of us had expected this to happen that day, of course, and none of us expected the pain of grief to be so great. As I have said so many times since, life is not for wimps.
The thing is this. The amount of sorrow and missing we feel is an indicator of our love. Because we love someone, we miss them when they are gone. So - there are two options. Either not to love in order to prevent the pangs of grief, or to love and to make ourselves vulnerable. A life with love, however, brings so much joy. Yes, there might be a moment of loss and missing, but it will never overshadow all the good times, the joy, laughters, the sharing you had during a lifetime.
We were not created for sorrow and death, but for joy and life. That's why we feel so utterly displaced and miserable in our berievement. The convulsions of sorrow are the reaction of life to death. Every single cell in our body rejects it because it is so alien to our true purpose.
I am glad that death will perish for good some day.
Sleep well our dear friend.