The day we lost our puppy

Note: I never did finish this. The combination of the craziness of everyday life with the fact that this was hard to work on for me, and now with Nokes….good intentions sometimes aren’t enough. But I still think it is important to have it, as a snapshot of the time no matter if it is finished or not.

The day we lost our puppy

I awoke to a hysterical, tear choked voice and a brief shake , “Jeff, he’s not breathing.”

My mind was focused, and I was fully aware that Sarah was talking about Kellogg. In one and a half steps I am in the living room, and there he lays, flat and outstretched, no subtle rise and fall to his chest. On her knees, Sarah was stroking his, shaking with doubt, her remaining sanity transparent, a usually rock hard knit of calm fibers, fraying to the core.

I am now in the kitchen, paper in my clumsy numb hand, dialing a set of numbers for the airport emergency pet hospital. The unfairly calm voice on the other end tells me to bring him in immediately. I am thinking we have to leave now, immediately, but for six disbelieving seconds we are both stricken, frozen with fear and crippling tears.

Kellogg’s little head suddenly lashes back once, mouth open, and slowly back to it’s resting point.

Then again.

And again.

He’s going into seizures!

Sarah’s shaking, bouncing on her knees. Our little frail puppy vomits a little, and he is breathing again, and I lose time again as another 6 seconds before I realize we are both in the car, hurtling, curving down the on ramp onto an open highway. It is 2:00 am and sarah is crumbling.

Fear and panic drove my car at a velocity of over 90 miles per hour, there was precious little time.

Sarah’s voice quaked, “Ooooh Kellogg, c’mon honey.” He had stopped breathing. I told Sarah to pump on his fragile little chest and give him CPR. Two buttons presses and I had called the hospital again but they only repeated my instructions. I need to concentrate on the road.

But it didn’t matter.

It didn’t matter that God’s wings swept us half way around the city in a mere ten minutes.

It didn’t matter that in only two and three quarters steps our outstretched quivering arms crashed into the attendant.

Three minutes passed and the doctor came out shaking his head, defeated. We lost you at East street and never got you back.

Sarah clenched and lifted me with a gasp of remaining emotion as she buried her head into my chest. Her walls crumbled. Then just as quickly she looked up at the doctor, wiped her bloodshot eyes and ask, “Can we see him?”

The doctor bobbed his head complacently, and we headed behind the counter through a frigid metal door. The small room had only a brushed metal table, everything felt like ice to the touch. The doctor came around the corner, cradling our blanket in his arms. He laid him on the table, paused, then left. Sarah unwrapped the blanket, there was Kellogg’s face, quiet, stiff. She covered her mouth and sobbed, I succumbed to the shock and our bodies held each other heaving and convulsing together.

Five minutes ago he was warm, but now self loathing set in as the doubtful thoughts race through my mind, “He didn’t even seem real.” We both touched him delicately with our fingers, said a disbelieving goodbyes and closed the door. My mind is racing thinking, “We’re leaving? But Kellogg isn’t with us. We just got here, aren’t we taking him with us?” It was obvious that the gravity had not yet hit.

The next half hour was stupid. It doesn’t even matter. In 20 short minutes my world was upside down, and I was stepping beside myself, and watching myself say, “Honey, what can we do with him? We can’t bury him in the middle of winter. ” We have an option of a group cremation, still in shock, we agree. It’s the only thing we can do, we feel like it is like signing some generic contract to get to the thing you actually want, and that is the safe return of our puppy that we love so dearly.

But we left, my legs heavy, the weight of my head crushed my shoulders.

I felt like we were marionettes, desensitized and emotionless when we got back to the house. It was dark outside, we opened the car doors slowly and I dropped off the keys in the dish. We hit the couch and melted into each other.

We only had you for two weeks. We have lived together for nearly four years but we knew we had forgotten how to be normal. I felt completely lost.

Continue to Part 2…..

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