The last time I saw her was Sunday. She was lying on her side in her usual spot on her pillow behind the couch. I crouched down to pet her and took note of the bare patch where her fur was recently shaved off at the vet’s office for an ultrasound. Gallstones were discovered. My touch did not wake her or maybe she thought it was the usual affection from my mom or dad. I put my hand in front of her nose to let her know who it was. Her nose wiggled and sniffed. I could see her excitement as she came to. Her eyes opened as she tilted her head up to look at me. Her eyes had a foggy gray blue film. She was straining to see me as she leaned in towards me to give a kiss. Her nose was dry and she was struggling to breathe. Her familiar perky spirit and eagerness to greet me quickly vanished as she plopped her head back down, closed her eyes, and continued to pant and resume her nap.
Today is Wednesday. Ash Wednesday. I always enjoyed this holy day when I used to be a practicing Catholic and a quote from the Bible I always remembered from this day is: from dust we came and dust we shall return. I almost wish I had gone to mass today to hear this again but instead, I was celebrating life while in dance class.
Without death, there can be no life. The cycle of life and death was greatly reminded tonight when I found out that Sabrina (”Sabi”), our 16-year old Australian Shepherd mix had passed away. She was the family dog for most of her life. My sister had adopted her in San Diego when she was just a puppy. When my sis moved into a place that didn’t allow pets, my mom and dad took Sabi in…a “temporary stay” with the grandparents that turned into the rest of her life. She had a long and happy life and although she recently had many complications, including a stroke last year, I’ll always remember her as the spry dog that jumped up and down when she was excited to see me, loved having her tummy rubbed, and the dog that loved chasing birds.
Below are the last photos of Sabi I took while we rode in the car to San Diego to spend Christmas with my sister. The car ride and travel was a bit taxing on her but she was a good sport. I’m glad she got to enjoy one more good ride in the car with the wind blowing in her face.
To Sabi: you were very much loved. You brought us joy, laughter and most of all, love and companionship. It’s never easy to let go of someone or something you love but I know you no longer need to suffer. You are already missed and you will forever be in our hearts and memories…
…if you would like to add anything in memory of Sabi, please comment below.