“Veterinarian”I have to admit that sometimes, I have less time on the weekend for blogging than during the week.  I usually am tired from trying to fit in as much family time as possible since Tomas is home.  This weekend was particularly busy trying to spend as much time with the kids as possible and at the same time trying to get stuff done to prepare the house for the “For Sale” sign that will soon grace the front lawn.  To add to our stress, we also suffered a loss in our home this weekend.  One of our dogs, Zoey, was brought away for good due to health reasons.

We knew that it was time.  She had 4 “accidents” on the floor again on Friday.  We had already spent a great deal of money in the past for her health issues and she just wasn’t improving as time went on.  The vet’s prognosis was never hopeful.  So, after much sad discussion, we knew that it was best if we helped her on her way. 

The part that was the hardest was explaining it to the boys.  She was their favorite animal playmate.  Always up for a romp or a good time with them, no matter what.  So, what do you tell a 4 year old and a 2 year old about the passing of an animal friend?  I tried my hardest and this is what I told them.  I explained to them that Zoey was sick and we discussed how she was always peeing or pooping on the floor lately (they were well aware of this because they were often the first to see it after she stood up).  The explanation went on as I told them that Dad was going to bring her to the doctor and she wasn’t going to come back.  Okay, let’s stop the story right there a minute.

I panicked here because I didn’t want them to think that if you went to the doctor, you wouldn’t come back if you were really sick.  So then, I added, “Well, she just couldn’t have accidents anymore in the house.  Dogs need to poop and pee outside where they are supposed to.  So, we are making sure she can go somewhere where it’s okay to poop and pee on the floor.  Stop the story, again…

At this point I am sweating.  This is not a good explanation I think to myself.  Anson is going to start potty training  and what if they think that if you have accidents on the floor, you will be sent away for good.  Also, they might think that a place where you can poop and pee on the floor really exists.  What if they want to go there? Uugh!  I don’t know what to do at this point.

Thankfully, they lose interest in this conversation suddenly due to another amazing butterfly (moth) flying by the window.  So, I drop the conversation hoping they won’t think too much about it.  I was in the clear until Zack asked me yesterday, “When is Zoey coming back from the doctor?”  Hmmm…I start to sweat again.  I say, “Well honey, Zoey was really sick and she went to the doctor for good.”  Instantly, I want to kick myself.  Back at square one.  Uugh.

 What is a good way to approach the passing of a pet?  I obviously have no idea.  I even have my kids thinking that all of our fish went down the drain to go to the ocean because they were sick.  Zack still wonders how his fish are doing and when they will be back.  I don’t have the heart to approach the topic of death with them, but the day is all too close (more like, it’s today) where I will have to explain that our dog really isn’t at the doctor, for good.   I will have to tell them she is in heaven with Great Grandma and that will begin another ordeal that I was hoping to not bring up again.  Zack’s excellent questions of “Where is heaven?”  “When can I go there?” and “What does it look like?”  I feel like I can’t explain that well in 4 year old terms either! 

Lord, please give me strength….and words…lots of the right words are needed here.  Amen.

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