Saturday, May 3, 2014

Ode to Desoto: Part 1

Posted by ChristineElaine at 10:34 PM
Something horrible happened last night.

I never thought I would write a post like this so soon, at least not for another several years. That's the thing though, is that you think you have all the time in the world... but you don't. Last night our gate was left unlocked and wasn't latched all the way after Josh had done yard maintenance. I had no idea when I let Desoto out for his nightly business doing... and then suddenly he was gone. Josh searched and searched. I had to stay home with the two babies, I had to stay strong not just for the girls, but I knew if I broke down (too, since Josh had already gone down that path) we would all fall apart. I had high hopes, though. Desoto wouldn't just leave us. Someone probably found him and picked him up, right? I was antsy, waiting for a call from a kind stranger. He was micro-chipped, everything in that sense was proper and right. There was a good chance he'd come home, right? Right?
After his third search, Josh could not stop breaking down. He sobbed and sobbed. "It's all my fault", he said. He blamed himself. I was still shocked at what had happened. I still refused to believe he was gone. This was our Desoto. Our big, brave, boy. He would find his way back to us.

Still, I couldn't say anything. I was afraid I would break down, and I didn't want to do that in front of Cam. I had to take care of them. I was hoping beyond all hope that someone had to have picked him up. A good samaritan or something. Fuck, I WANTED to freak out and cry my eyes out and I could literally feel this black hole inside me absorbing everything. I wanted to cry so so bad but I couldn't. Not yet. The search continued, and it wasn't looking good.

Desoto would never leave us, he wouldn't! My thoughts then went dark-- it was night time. He was probably lost and scared, or what if someone stole him? Dobermans are an expensive breed. What if someone was intending to profit off of him, or perhaps use him in dog fighting? That's when I broke down. This was MY dog. I should be out there searching. He was the best damn dog in the world and was loyal to me, I should be out there. I was frantic at this point. But what could I do? I had to stay at home with my babies. I had to be strong when all I wanted to do was collapse in my bed and cry my eyes out.

At around 8:30 am there was a drastic change in news. Josh came home from another search. He had found Desoto.

He had found him on the side of the road not far at all from our home, partially hidden in the bushes. Josh thought he was sleeping.

I couldn't believe he thought that was sleeping. He honestly thought Desoto was sleeping. I didn't want to hear the rest. I knew what a dog on the side of the road meant. When Josh said the word dead, it just... I don't even know. It was the closure I needed, but not the outcome I wanted. This was not supposed to happen. This did not happen to people like us, we take good care of our dog, feed him the best food available to us, give him a plethora of bones and his own toys, and yet... here we were.

Sleeping? If only it were that simple. But no. Someone had hit him with their car. Left him there to die. I'm so sick of people. How could they do such a despicable thing and live with themselves? Josh wanted to find a pet cemetery to bury him. I said no way, we're getting him cremated. Find a vet that does cremations, and also ask if they can get his paw prints done. He will be around forever that way.

Desoto was in the back of the truck and Josh had said his goodbye. I went out there, and began bawling my eyes out. I wish I could say goodbye to him again. Tell him how much I loved him, and how I STILL love him, and how he will most likely be the best dog I will ever have. I would thank him for being so sweet and generous with the kids. I would thank him for allowing Cam to pull on his ears, or play with his paws, or that he didn't care if she pulled one of his bones away from him. I would thank him for having the patience of a saint when it came to Cam and the kids. Thank him for never ever snapping or growling or be aggressive to any of us, ever. I would thank him for his vigilance, his warm heart, and his protectiveness. I always felt safe with him around. Now I not only feel a huge hole in my heart, but I also feel very vulnerable. This is so unfair to him. What happened should not have happened. If I could go back to yesterday I would have done things different. I would've played tug of war, chased him around the yard, let him have that bagel he was eyeing the whole time I munched on it...
If I knew yesterday was our last day with the most amazing dog in the world, it would've gone so much more different.

This was clearly a message. NEVER take ANY LOVED ONE for granted. They will not always be there and anything can happen.

Goodbyes are so hard, I wish I could go and re-do mine. When I stood there looking at his body (from under his favorite blanket) my mind just blanked. The tears wouldn't stop. I just couldn't believe it.

Here's the absolute worst: Desoto is gone. Forever. The guilt is eating at me. For him to go like that, cold and alone. He probably thought nobody cared about him. No one cared enough to get out and help him. I keep thinking what were his last thoughts? Did he think of me? Did he think of Cam? Josh? Did he think of us at all? Was he wondering where he was, what was happening to him? Did he just want to be in his warm home where his mommy could console and make things better for him? I sincerely hope that there is an afterlife. I may not be religious, but I consider myself agnostic and a bit spiritual. I don't know if there is a God, or who or specifically what he is if one such exists, but I hope to whatever God is out there that he took the pain away, that maybe there was an angel with him on the side of the road, comforting him.

Please spend all the time you can with your loved ones. I am devastated and I'm still in a bit of shock. I don't understand how something like this could happen to us. I am so careful with doors, gates, I should have double checked that damn gate. I should have made sure that when he was done that he padlocked that stupid wonky gate. I'm paranoid with that kind of stuff, and especially because it's this town. I didn't though, and it's torture to think about.

But one of the bigger things that hurts the most, besides losing a wonderful companion -- I am so upset that Cam will not remember him, nor will not grow up with him. There won't be that bittersweet Calvin and Hobbes moment I wanted them to have. I've never had a dog like him. Ever. Never had a dog that I could trust like that. And in one fell swoop, he's gone.

I'll be grieving for a long, long, long time. Having his ashes and the paw prints will make me feel better, though. I will feel like he's here. That might sound silly, but it would be comforting for me, because I loved that dog more than anything. I may have been strict with him, but someone had to be to keep him in line. He didn't grow up to be the dog he is without the discipline and mothering I smothered him with... lol. He knew I loved him. I know he loved me, too. Probably most of all, judging by all the photos we have taken of him... you'll be able to see, perhaps glimpse how special our relationship was.

If you've read this far, thanks. This post is mostly for me. To never forget. I miss him so fucking much it kills me. It kills me that I have to stay strong. I don't want Cam or Alice to see what a mess I could be, and am currently, while everyone is tucked away and asleep.

I will never get over this. I love you Desoto. I'm so sorry I wasn't there with you. I'm so sorry this happened at all. This has been a brutal nightmare. Your collar, your toys laying around, your photos... I don't know what to do, but I love you so much, boy.

RIP Desoto.

When we first brought him home. 3 months old.
The first in a series of several shots where he is sleeping either on me or next to me.
He was so tiny. :(
I remember thinking, darn, will he ever grow into those paws?
                             He always had such a great profile.

                      And he loved plopping himself into my lap.

And spy on me in the bathroom.
                                      And smile at me... and...

he was so proud of his messes.
And so proud that he could balance hamburgers on his head.
Mommy do you want my hamburger?
He was so silly. But he was also so intimidating-looking.
  I knew better though. I knew he was just the biggest cuddle bug.
But boy was he heavy.
And boy could he snore.
I knew he loved me very much.
He always wanted to be close.
Even if I did things like this to him.
He loved to be FABULOUS.
You know... he was very good about balancing things on his head.
                          Most of all, he loved being close.

He loved sharing his toys.
                 And he didn't mind when I painted his nails...
He was goofy.
He was loving.
He loved adventures.
And making crazy faces.
REALLY crazy faces.
                      He was definitely a momma's boy.
And boy was he handsome.
He LOVED waking me up... even when I did not request a wake up call....

Sometimes he'd fall asleep next to me if I hadn't gotten up yet.
And he loved to spy on me. Make sure I was being productive.
He loved Christmas time.
                         Sometimes he looked a bit odd...

But he always shared his things.
                                 And he loved sharing kisses.
He made some of the cutest faces.
Sometimes someone who is just waking up doesn't appreciate doggy kisses, and he totally didn't get that.
And he didn't really understand why it was considered rude to spy on someone going to the bathroom...
But he understood the important things. Like sharing... and cuddling...
Like sticking by your human when she feels like crap.
And that maybe if you lay under her desk giving her goo goo eyes, maybe she'd feel sorry for you and give you a cookie.
                                     He definitely loved all his toys.

And REALLY loved laying his many many pounds on top of me.
Did I mention he loved to share his things? Ew!
Making messes was just a perk of being so cool.
That face.
He knew the importance of morning stretches.
More importantly that mommy is comfortable and sleeping in is A-OK.
He was super comfy.
His offering of slobbery bones and squeaky cat balls was just his way of saying he loved you.
And sometimes he was a little showy with what he was born with... lol.
                          You don't want my offerings, Mom?
Back when he could FIT under my desk, I used to call him the "troll under the bridge".
           Here he is, trying to get me to get up and out of bed.
Did I mention that he was a cuddlebug? Oh wait ... I did.
Rest In Peace, Desoto. You have no idea how much I already miss you. I will always love you, and no dog could ever replace you and what you have done for our family.

I love you Desoto.
May 27 2011 - May 3 2014   [[[he would have been 3 in a few weeks :( ]]]


Paula Wilson said...

My heart breaks for the lost of your love one Desoto in such a tragic manner. I hope that you find peace in your heart knowing the loving home you gave your beloved dog. Try to remember all the good times you had with Desoto and maybe someday your heart will be open to another beautiful dog that you can love and cherish like Desoto. Rest in Peace Desoto

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