Losing Lucy

This post is going to be hard to write, but it needs to be written. We had to put Lucy down on Friday, and our hearts are broken by her absence. Mary Ann and Ron Lovell gave her to us in 2008. She truly was the most amazing canine, and it will take some time to work through the grief. People put pets down everyday, but it’s a very hard thing to do.

Lucy had a tumor removed twice by Dr. King, and it came back a third time. It was cancer that had spread all the way through her body, and it had gotten so bad she could not stand up. I texted Carey to come home, and even before she got home from work I had set an appointment to put our precious Lucy to sleep. I broke down over phone, and even as I type this sentence I feel despair setting in as it has multiple times since our Lucy left.

She was in unbearable pain. Putting her to sleep was the most humane thing we could have done, but it still hurts to no end. It’s going to take time. We won’t ever forget her, and we are thankful for the years she was given to us.

Some people will say, “It was only a dog,” but I think those people don’t understand the process of grief. You must grieve the loss of a pet. Suppressing grief and suffering will exacerbate depression and anxiety. Acknowledge any kind of grief you go through. Journal about it. Blog about it. Post on Facebook about it because the encouragement of others who have gone through similar losses will enable you to push forward beyond it. Don’t just do it one time. Do it over and over till you have hope to do what God has put you on this planet to do. Too many people don’t recognize the pain they face even when it’s something like losing a pet. We have repressed many hurting people by minimizing their pain in comparison to “greater” pains in the world. Our heavenly Father has told us to lay our burdens on him, and we do this through prayer and confessing our hurts to others. You can’t change what you don’t confess and face, and losing a pet is part of that very long list in our broken world.

I was trying so hard to keep Lucy around for another year. You know the despair I shoulder when I take our other dog Wrigley outside, and Lucy isn’t out there with us. It’s brutal. She’s supposed to be out there with us, and she isn’t. It deeply hurts as everything in me is pressing this sentence out into the world. Her gentleness and kindness still resonate in my experience as I grieve her passing. It’s been 72 hours, and I long to see her.

I do know she’s not in pain anymore, and that does bring comfort. Her quality of life was not good. She couldn’t stand having to go into my office every morning to have her tumor bandaged, and it was getting costly having to buy pain pills and antibiotics. Our love for her drove us to do those things because we honestly thought she’d be around for Chloe’s graduation.

We aren’t the first people to long for something that didn’t materialize. We’ve also experienced other losses that needed grief as well. Our Father is sustaining us through this, and there will come a point when we will resume “normal” emotions as we continue to thank God for our precious dog Lucy.

Thank you to all of you who have offered words of hope and prayers of comfort.

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