I’ve heard folks call the Tripawd ups and downs as an “emotional rollercoaster”. I totally get the relevance, however, I LOVE rollercoasters and typically the lows are just as much fun as the highs. With that said, there’s not enough money to get me back in line for this ride.
However, just like the Grinch’s heart, the power of love can do amazing things, including the purchase of a ticket for another “ride”.
The rollercoaster pulls at every dimension of our being. From sleep deprivation to financial duress, no matter how prepared we are, the rollercoaster is ruthless and breathtaking. But that’s why we bought the ticket to begin with, right? Added to the “thrills”, if by chance a disease (such as cancer) is included in the Tripawd ride, all of a sudden it takes a nasty turn from just ups-and-downs to cork-screw feats that keep us wondering which end is up.
Analogies aside, the highs and lows of dealing with pre and post maintenance for our Tripawd’s journey is not for the faint-of-heart.
I remember the first emotion I felt when we received the news Harmony had cancer and would lose her leg; dis-belief, “You’ve got to be kidding. She’s vibrant, active and in great health. How could she have this ugly disease?”
As time progressed, then came the rest . . .
Anger (emotionally charged frustration) – “That’s so unfair! @#*%&*($ !!!!
Reflection – “How could this be? We were so careful. We did everything possible to keep her healthy and happy. How did we let this happen?”
Guilt . . .see “reflection”.
Denial – “Her ultra-sound came out clean, they’re just wrong.”
Sadness – “I’m so sorry sweet girl, I promised I would never let anything happen to you and I’ve let you down.”
Guilt . . . see “sadness”.
Despair – “God, punish me. Please, please, I’m begging you, spare this innocent creature.”
Joy – “Oh look at my sweet girl! Yay . . . we have poop!”
Relief – “Thank goodness her blood work came back clean.”
Desperation (not to be confused with Despair) – “I’ll do whatever it takes to keep her from suffering.”
Regret – “If only I had started you on chemo when the doctor first hinted about it.”
Guilt . . . see “regret”.
Surprise – “What do you mean it’s spread?”
Frustration (the lighter side of Anger) – “Please, please, please eat this for mommy.”
And these are just the prevalent emotions. There are so many more that could fill this page.
The transitions are seamless and just when we think we’ve gotten to the very last emotional ping, they start all over again.
My epiphany was this wasn’t an emotional rollercoaster as it was a love rollercoaster. Harmony was our love, our heart. It wasn’t emotions that kept us going day-after-day, night-after-sleepless night. It was love in its rawest form; a selfless love that, oddly enough, we learned from our fur-babies, Grace is what Calvert’s mommy called it.
How could it have been anything else other than love that brought us from the pit of despair when Harmony passed in our arms?
I’d say the debt we owe could only be filled with the same reflected love and dedication they gave us; Polly, Ty, Shelby, Harmony, Calvert, Rox, Maggie, Jerry, Moose, Leland, Chuck, Lexie, Snoop, Calamity Jane, Billy, Franklin, Grady, Sasha, Shooter, Brendol, Dakota, Happy Hannah, Jake, Libby, Rosie, Sassy and many, many more who’ve gone on to the Rainbow Bridge.
Harmony’s love rollercoaster came into the station on November the 1st. Although the ride stopped being as scary, it’s taking a while for it to slow its momentum. The day it does will be the day that only joy remains.
Merry Christmas everyone. Love and joy to you and all those you love and cherish.