the nest

the nest

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

sad news...

"Look for the helpers" is what Mr. Rogers said.  I keep seeing that quote all over the internet and I keep trying to remember it.  He was a very wise man.  I like to think that I am often a "helper," but right now I'm looking to my helpers.
In the midst of the horror and sadness around the tragic events in Boston yesterday, our family was hoping that an EKG done on our sweet puppy Luther would give us good news.  This morning, not only did it not give us good news, it was worse than our vet had anticipated.
At a vet check on Friday, a heart murmur was detected.  It was significant enough that we decided to go ahead with the EKG.  She suspected something called a PDA.  Probably expensive, but repairable and with an excellent success rate.
What it actually ended up being was something called a Tricuspid Dysplasia.  A congenital heart defect that is not fixable.  To sum it up, Luther is likely to have a very short life ending in heart failure.  His poor heart is already enlarged and we are so very sad.
Dr. Brown is a helper.  She is kind and empathetic and I know she feels so very badly about the difficult decision we have to make.  Alis is a new friend who brought Luther to us and has been available over the last several days to talk and process the whole sad situation.
Alicia and Jessica and my sisters have all been sympathetic ears for me.  I don't know what I would do without so many sweet helpers.

What we want is a helper to tell us what to do, even though I know what we have to do.  Most likely, Luther will return to the farm he was born on to be cared for until his heart gives out.  We will bring home a different puppy.  This is the logical choice.  We've only had him for a week, and expected a healthy puppy, not one with a heart defect and a life expectancy of a few months to at the very most 3 years.  We cannot take on the cost, both financial and emotional, of caring for him as he dies.
We have been overwhelmed by how quickly we have fallen in love with this sweet boy.  The idea of letting him go makes my stomach sick.
The idea of taking on the care of a sick puppy and watching him die when I need to be a helper to my children as they face so many challenges makes me feel worse.  I don't have it in me to care for him, but letting him go seems heartless.  We thought a puppy would bring some joy after a difficult few months, but the joy has been too short.
I want a helper to tell me how I make this better.  I know I can't.

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