Friday, June 15, 2012

Farewell, Shadow Sunshine

Blogging Friends.... My day at our beach was lovely!! Just lovely. The weather was unusually warm and sunny!! My nose become a little pink, even!! Imagine that!! Usually, we deal with overcast skies and seemingly freezing cold weather at our beach!! My right calf is also very sore--still!!--triggered from an old injury back in November, but it will subside!! The tight, itchy sensation always does!! No worries....
Two years ago, my heart shattered, like when some clear glass falls, the force of gravity taking it down sans any warning. Nobody can predict this dangerous sharp mess. No one can foresee it. Down, down, down the glass crashes, with great velocity. Only, in my case, I did see this heartbreak coming. I did see it coming.... There was a warning, and, my emotions had been long prepared for this, as best as humanly possible. For three long months. My beautiful "blond"-furred German Shepherd/Golden Retriever cross, Shadow, had been revealing unmistakable signs of old age. First stiff joints. Then white hairs across her face. And, finally, falling. Yes, falling. My weak, thin arms learned to catch her heavy body. And she was always very, very resilient!! But, two years ago last night, at 9:30 PM, Shadow fell, in front of our garage door, not far from where these words are being typed. I was feeding her, getting some chewy pizza-flavored treats, when she collapsed. "Dog down" were the words which exited my lips. Shadow could not stand up. I watched, my heart breaking, as she tried to, sans success. Shadow was a fighter, but the odds were stacked against her. Stacked against her. Resilience was proven impossible after that last collapse. I sat by my dog's side, stroking her "blond" fur nearly all night long. I only got two hours sleep. Shadow was euthanized around 2:30 PM, on June 15th 2010. I composed this poem one week later.
During that dreadful, dreadful night when you fell;
Nobody could predict death, no one could tell;
But it was such a hard collapse;
Did your hips quit on you, perhaps?
Trying hard to get up, this proved a losing fight;
So I stayed by your side nearly all through the night;
For ten years you've been faithful toward me;
This was my time to show loyalty!!
Farewell, Shadow Sunshine, farewell....
You've left lots of stories to tell!!
Wherever I go;
You will be missed so. 
It has been a positive two years, though. Because I have Rose!! For I adopted her less than three months after Shadow's passing. Practically right away!! Rose brings so much love, smiles and laughter into my life!! She is a reason why I awake each day!!  

24 comments:

scotsmad said...

A beautiful tribute to Shadow. It's so hard to say goodbye....

XXXOOO Daisy, Bella & Roxy

Raelyn said...

Daisy, Bella & Roxy....
Thank-you for the comment!!
Yeah.... I still miss Shadow....
I only wish that I'd written about her so that Blogville could have known my unforgettable, incorrigible girl!! ;op

Stacey said...

oh gosh, this was so sad! RIP Shadow!! It must've been horrible for you and I'm dreading the day my girls get old. Lovely poem

Raelyn said...

Stacey....
Thank-you for the comment!!
Yeah. It was a horrible experience for me. Watching your girl swiftly slip away is emotional, and I am changed because of it. I cry more now. But.... I am eternally grateful for Shadow's last three months. Eternally grateful. And our final night together....
I only wish that I'd written about Shadow so that Blogville could have known my unforgettable, incorrigible girl!! ;op

Dip-Dip and the Bridge said...

What a lovely post. It is so hard when they leave after such a short time with us. At least our dogs are the lucky ones who only know love and kindness, there are plenty who don't.
Lynne x

Raelyn said...

Lynne....
Thank-you for the comment!!
Yeah.... I had Shadow for nearly ten and a half years, because we got her at age three. She was thirteen. ;)
"At least our dogs are the lucky ones who only know love and kindness, there are plenty who don't.". True, so true!! ;op

Rama's Mama said...

Aw. Such a moving post.

Raelyn said...

Rama's Mama....
Thank-you for the comment!!
My emotions composed that poem. And this Blog post. That is pretty much my style!! ;op

Tweedles -- that's me said...

Your tribute to Shadow is beautiful.
Its so hard to say good bye and so unselfish as we decide what to do- as we know our heart will break, but its the kindest thing to do.
We are glad you were blessed with Rose who has learned to help you laugh!
love
tweedles

Raelyn said...

tweedles....
Thank-you for the comment!!
"Its so hard to say good bye and so unselfish as we decide what to do- as we know our heart will break, but its the kindest thing to do.". Agreed!! Sometimes the right choice is the most difficult....

lifewithmydogs said...

What a lovely poem. It's so sad losing a much loved pet. Shadow looks like he was a beautiful dog!
And I just thought of this, one of my closest friends has a golden retriever x german shepherd! His name is Hunter. I thought you might like that.

Raelyn said...

lifewithmydogs....
Thank-you for the comment!!
Shadow was beautiful.... Both inside and out. Incorrigible? Yes. But even in the end, she never stopped "smiling"!! ;)
One of your closet friends owns a German Shepherd/Golden Retriever cross named Hunter? Neat!! I wonder what he looks like.... ;-D
I wish that I had written about Shadow. This way, Blogville could have known my unforgettable, girl!! ;op

MAXMOM IN SOUTH AFRICA said...

(((Hugs)) to you Raelyn...
I understand.
It's only when you open your heart up again that the opportunity presents itself for the love to flow in.
((Hugs)) to Rose too.
MAXMOM IN SOUTH AFRICA

Alison said...

Beautiful tribute Raelyn. RIP sweet Shadow. It never is easy getting through the loss of a loved pet. We lost our family golden/chow mix a few years ago on Thanksgiving morning. I still think of her, but I smile when I do because she brought so much joy to my life.

Raelyn said...

MAXMOM....
Thank-you for the comment!!
"It's only when you open your heart up again that the opportunity presents itself for the love to flow in." Mmmm.... Very good. And true!! Rose has helped immensely with my healing process. That was evident right away!! ;)
I appreciated your ((hugs)).... Clear from South Africa!! ;op

Raelyn said...

Alison....
Thank-you for the comment!!
Your family owned a Golden/Chow mix?! Cool!! Now that was one Beautifully Unique mutt!! ;)
This is just me, and I'm somewhat crazy, but I always find myself in a very, very positive emotional/mental state of being whenever Shadow comes to mind. It means that I'll never forget her!! ;op

KSO said...

I know it can be so hard losing a companion like Shadow but you are so blessed to have found Rose! There is a silver lining to every cloud

Raelyn said...

KSO....
Thank-you for the comment!!
"There is a silver lining to every cloud.". That's right!! And everything has a purpose in life.... Rose was Meant To Be!! ;op

Ruby said...

What a nice post! These kind of anniversaries are so hard. Some years you are so sad, others you are just grateful to have known them and have the memories that you do have. Sounds like although you still hurt, you are finding comfort and joy in your memories and with Rose too!

Raelyn said...

Ruby....
Thank-you for the comment!!
This is just me, and I'm somewhat crazy, but I always find myself in a very, very positive emotional/mental state of being whenever Shadow comes to mind. It means that I'll never forget her!! So I actually find comfort, in a weird sort of way, in talking about, thinking about, and writing about Shadow!! ;op

charlene and Storm said...

what a lovely post. i know just how you feel. i lost deefa a year ago on the 8th of june this year. i still miss him so much. in a way i wish id had more warning to know he was going to die but then on the other hand im glad he was absolutely fine until the meningitis suddenly hit him and i know i never ignored him and treated him just as a special little fluffy bum should be xxx thinking of you xxx and our new doggys always help to heal the tears in our heart xxx

Raelyn said...

charlene....
Thank-you for commenting!!
Isn't it amazing the sense of peace we feel within our hearts about how they leave us? You are glad that Deefa was fine until his illness took him. I, on the other hand, am eternally grateful for those last few months spent with Shadow.... It is all relative, right? Everybody grieves differently. ;op

Suka said...

Hi,

What a bittersweet story. Your poem to Shadow is beautiful, and your tribute to her is lovely. I have tears in my eyes because I feel the pain you felt. I know all to well the feelings that come with losing a beloved pet dog. They always go too soon, and we are left mourning their loss for so long. Shadow was very blessed to have you by her side until the very end. That is a great gift you gave to her. Thanks for sharing your story of Shadow. She sounds like she was an incredible dog, and so strong. An inspiration!

K and Suka

Raelyn said...

K and Suka....
Thanks for commenting!!
"Shadow was very blessed to have you by her side until the very end. That is a great gift you gave to her. Thanks for sharing your story of Shadow. She sounds like she was an incredible dog, and so strong. An inspiration!" Yes!! Shadow was blessed to have me by her side until the end. Completely. I will never forget our final night together!! I returned her unconditional love, as the poem expresses. And, yes, she was an incredible dog!! A bit incorrigible. Strong-willed. Naughty. But incredible nonetheless!! ;op