This is my favorite Carmel picture of all time. It has been on our refrigerator since I took it in 2006. My children all handled the news of Carmel's terminal illness differently.... but pretty much the way I would have expected. Dori asked… Can my boyfriend come? Macy wanted to know if Carmel would be listed in the obituaries. Pete was worried about the trip to the vet and he wanted to know if her eyes close by themselves. (I had no idea!!) And Pete asked "Can we get a new dog?"
As we told the kids the news Macy and Pete cried. Dill just stood there, a little overwhelmed. He heard the news but he did not know what to think. At one point, he looked at Pepper and I and said, "I think I will cry after." Sometimes I forget that the little guy is only 7. We all did cry at the vet's. It was not an easy thing to do on any level. And leaving her there in the room alone knowing I will never bring her back to the house was heartbreaking for me. We kept the kids busy the rest of the day. I actually found it exhausting to just be normal. Curling into a ball on my bed was in the fore front of my mind most of the day. The kids were exhausted and went to bed pretty early for a warm summer night. I guess we really did wear them out. I did not realize how hard just going to bed was going to be for me. Every night the last thing I do is feed the dog. Yes, it should be a kid chore but honestly it was one of those things that was just easier to do myself then follow behind to make sure the assigned kid actually did it. Last night I actually reached for Carmel's bowl before I realized I did not need to.
Looking at Carmel's empty bowl reminded me of her last meal. All of us were guilty. Carmel had cheese crackers, peanut butter bread, pizza rolls, several slices of salami, sausage and scrambled eggs with cheese. She was in heaven before she left our kitchen. This picture will be on our refrigerator for a long time to come. Good bye Carmel. 6/2001-8/18/2009