The “Say Whaaat” Project, #5
I put Diamond, my 11-year old bulldog, to sleep last Wednesday.
It was a sunny, beautiful day. And I made sure Diamond stepped on the muddy grass in front of our house before we got in the car to go to the vet’s office. I wanted Diamond to know the optimism of spring one last time.
She died at 3:30 in the afternoon. It was time. I’d heard the message. Days before, I’d held her head and looked into her eyes and said, “Thank you, sweetheart. You’ve been my best friend. I’m going to help you now. I promise.”
I put her down because I loved her so very much. It’s the ultimate irony. The ultimate sacrifice.
A line comes into my mind every few hours. Like a mantra. It’s a lyric by Coldplay, “Lights will guide you home.”
I am grief-stricken. I go over it and over it and over it, asking myself, “Did I do the right thing?”
Playing God sucks. Deciding who lives and who dies is not for the faint of heart.
For the record, I did the right thing. She was suffering. She told me that, she showed me that. I made that promise.
On the day that I did it, Diamond fell into my arms and died with her big white head on my left shoulder. She was at peace. No struggling. Just surrender to the inevitable. And a well-earned rest.
Lights will guide her home.
I will scan the nighttime sky and search for her star. It will be the prettiest one, burning brightest and surest and longest. I know it.
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Photo of Diamond Selwyn by the author.