There are wadded up tissues all over my house. This was the worst kind of day.
I have eluded to the fact that Merlin here has been struggling. This weekend, and yesterday in particular, were very tough on the boy. We could see him trembling in pain, and he couldn’t even stand to greet the guests who stopped by the house in the morning. So we made the call. The call that you never want to make.
We hired MNPets to come to the house to put Merlin to sleep this afternoon. We didn’t want him to suffer through a car ride to the vet (which stresses him out). We wanted this to be the best day possible for our love, and I think it was.
We started by keeping Ezra home an extra hour this morning so the two of them could have more time together. Merlin especially adores Ezra, and he ignores how Ezra pulls on his fur. I love that moment they were having up there.
Then we got Ez ready for school, and Merlin kissed him goodbye. And the tears… man, the tears… but you know… what are you going to do?
I tell you what you do. You lay down on the floor and snuggle your heart out with the best dog on the planet. You tell him what an amazing creature he is and how much joy he brought to your life and how you can’t stand to see him suffer. You stroke his ears and inhale his scent (earthy, like cedar) and you try to be as present as you can.
Then you bring the collie lunch from McDonald’s. Hamburgers (yes, plural), and french fries. And of course you top it off with ice cream (I mean, really, why not?). By now, Merlin is following you all over the house because he can’t believe his luck, and he’s thinking, “My God what else is she gonna give me?!”
He seems stronger now, so you take him for a walk down the block and back. His last walk.
And he smells everything and he marks everything and he enjoys the wind in his fur, and only when he has 2-3 more houses to go before we’re home does he begin to stumble and shake due to the pain.
Then you get home and you snuggle even more. You rub his feet and scratch his back. And then the doorbell rings, and it’s the vet who is here to help. He greets her so enthusiastically. She has a bag full of stuff! Is he getting more treats!?
We lay him down in the living room, and Meredith comes to take Magda for a walk (bless that Meredith).
Jamie and I lovingly pet Merlin and tell him over and over and over and over again how much we love him. How much we’ll miss him. How he’s the best dog we’ve ever had in our entire lives. How it’s ok now. How we want him to feel better.
And then it’s done. It takes awhile — longer than usual. He stopped breathing, but that heart. That heart won’t give out. So we wait, and pet him, and tell him it’s ok. He can play with Memphis again. And please give her our love.
And we cry and cry and cry and cry.
Today was the worst kind of day.