Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Loss and Life

In the time since I lasted posted, a few things have happened.

A) I went to Texas for a fabulous 10 days split between family/friends in Dallas and best good friend time in Austin with Sarah. While it was a whirlwind of a trip and left me pretty exhausted, I had a great time. There's something beyond comforting about being "home."

B) I celebrated my 26th birthday. Several times. I went to Portland with some girlfriends for a weekend of Blazers basketball and just hanging out being girls. It was a lot of fun :-). I got some pretty awesome gifts. A Blazers cap, some awesome Bath and Body Works stuff, a snuggie (tho that might've been a late Christmas present), a Brita water filter (love it), the Metric "Fantasies" CD, and a cast iron skillet is on the way. I can't wait to use it.

C) I've helped several OTHER friends celebrate their birthdays. There are a ton of birthdays in January, apparently. With all this celebrating, I've had a couple of drunken debacles, but all is well now. Luckily the other person involved is a really, really understanding person.

Probably the most notable event was the passing of my sweet Beagle, Luna. The whole thing has kind of thrown me for a loop. I got back from Texas on a Friday, and the following Saturday Luna and I spent the day at Elijah Bristow State Park, and then a friend came over that night to cook dinner and hang out.

At about midnight Luna was acting strange, and we kept an eye on her while we played Trivial Pursuit. It was pretty late (or early, depending on how you look) when I decided to call the emergency vet and tell them her symptoms. While I was on the phone, Luna was suddenly unable to use her back legs. So we immediately took her to the vet. Apparently a degenerated disc (a common problem in beagles) had slipped out of her vertebrae and into her spine, causing the sudden paralysis. I had several options: immediate surgery in Portland, leave her at the clinic for a couple of days while they medicate/monitor her, or take her home and medicate/monitor her. All of these options came with a pretty negative prognosis and warning that euthanasia was an imminent possibility. Surgery (a minimum of $5,000 with no guarantee of it being fixed) was out. Luna has separation anxiety and likes to be close to her mama.

So I brought her home, and we spent Sunday with each other. It was a pretty emotional day. Towards the end of the day, she had still not being able to relieve herself, which is something the vet had cautioned me about. So I took her back in, and it was then that I had to make the decision that it was time. While it was the most difficult decision I've ever made, I was comforted to know that she would not be in pain nor have to suffer the inability to run and play and be Luna. The following couple of weeks were pretty difficult, and I sunk pretty low a few times. Luckily, I've got a fantastic support group of family and friends. Also, I've recently started working out at the gym with a friend, and that helps immensely. It is so hard to sit at home without Luna, and I can't bring myself to walk through the neighborhood without her. So, the gym and working out is a great and beneficial distraction.

I definitely think I'm on the upswing as January comes to a close. I've done a lot of thinking about a lot of different things. Luna, life, goals, friendships, etc. I'm kinda counting on the Chinese New Year to be my new year. I feel like a real transition is coming on.