Yesterday I had (yet again) the unfortunate duty of making the decision to put a beloved pet to rest.
Willow was only a year old, a beautiful lab/sheppard mix that received many compliments from passersby on our daily walks.
When we brought her into our family, we were still dealing with the loss of my brother, and I knew in my heart that Willow was coming to us to bring us the love that we needed at the time.
Throughout the last 3 months we watched as her health steadily declined. The vet had no answers for us, he was completely baffled over the mass of symptoms she was experiencing, that she responded to none of the treatments he tried made it that much harder.
While we were away on vacation last week, her health declined even further and we knew we would have to make a decision about her future when we returned home.
So, yesterday as I stood in the veterinarian's office, listening to the vet tell me that it was most likely a brain tumour causing all these odd symptoms. I felt relieved to know that there was nothing more I could do for her and sad at the same time that the only thing left for me to do was to say good-bye.
I thought the sadness was going to overtake me, render me useless for days while I grieved her absence in our lives.
Then something happened....
I felt this overwhelming sense of peace and calm. In fact it was the same sense of peace and calm that I felt when my father passed away.
Then a deep and profound sense of love and gratitude swept over me. New tears began to puddle in my eyes as this love grew stronger and stronger. I have never in my life felt so completely and utterly loved, as I did in that moment.
I will never forget what Willow did for me in my time of need. And I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that I returned the favour.