Day 20: The BEST Dog Ever {#write31days}

Warning: this is a longer post just because I want to remember details…

On Saturday, October 18th at 10:59 pm, Izzy died in my husband’s arms. At the time, I was an emotional mess. Now, I see just how many things we have to be thankful for. Her death was quick–she seemed fine and happy during the day, we got home around 9 pm, and she wouldn’t walk, eat, or drink. She passed away by 11. That is a VERY quick process in my mind–I’m grateful we didn’t have long days of her in pain or having to make the decision of whether or not to put her down. I’m grateful she seemed comfortable and was held by the one who loved her most when she passed. I’m grateful the boys were both asleep when it happened. The night was VERY hard and the next day was too–coming home from church was the hardest. I’ve grown so used to telling the boys, “let’s go see Izzy” when we are heading home from somewhere. My oldest kept repeatedly calling for her or asking why she died. I explained she was sick with a thing called cancer and was now with Jesus, the angels, and Charlie. He then replied that he was going to die so he could see Izzy….


I got Izzy from a shelter in Prague, OK in the fall of 2008. She was probably two years old, and she was listed on PetFinder as Isadora. I’ll never forget when I first met her–my dad went with me, and I held her in my lap on the ride to Wellston. She was shaking the whole time. She LOVED dominating my parents’ dogs, and she stayed at their house and my aunt’s house until Christmas Eve, when I gave her to my husband.

On Christmas Even, wearing a jingle bell collar, she ran out of Memaw’s spare bedroom into a living room full of family. I think I had Rusty open a ring box with her dog tag in it. Everyone loved her–she was fierce, but playful, protective, loving, LOYAL, and wanted to always be near Rusty or I.

For two years, she was our baby. She slept under blankets or our bedding until the last few months–one of the side effects of the medicine we tried made her feel hot and she no longer “burrowed.” She went with us to our parents’ anytime we left home. We took her to family get-togethers, took her on walks, bought her chew toys, rawhides, treats, and taught her tricks like saying “bang” and she’d roller over “dead.” She slept in our bed every. single. night., under the covers, at our feet or curled up behind knees. She was extremely protective of the hubby–if I playfully hit him, she’d go NUTS and “attack” me.

She kept me constant company during football seasons–in the fall of 2009 and 2010, she’d curl up on the couch with me after school every day and take a nap. She would bark like crazy sometimes–a trait I did not like, but it was usually because she was being protective or warning us of something.

She ate my panties…like don’t leave any laundry lying on the floor, clean or dirty. She’d turn them intro crotchless undies. Gross, I know, but something we laugh about. We once had to take her to the ER because she at more than FIVE.

She loved to play fetch with tennis balls in the house, but never really learned to “drop” the ball–she wanted you to yank it out of her mouth.

My favorite times with Izzy were when I was pregnant with Cannon–it’s like she knew the days I needed extra affection or rest or just to be left alone. She was my constant companion before I had him.

I will be totally candid in saying that my affection for her wavered once the boys came along–my husband’s did not. He continued cuddling her, calling her his baby, and his only girl. I admire him for that. I will miss the boys yelling for her or chasing her and her chasing them around the house (all while screaming and barking loudly). I will miss her eating our crumbs or even snatching things out of they boys’ hands. I will miss her protective nature, and I will miss how she so desperately wanted to be by my side even if I didn’t want her around.

Izzy truly exemplified unconditional love.

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Day 10: In Mourning {#write31days}

Last night, I sat on a blanket in our backyard watching the boys play, the sun set, the stars appear, and I let myself grieve.

I realize I haven’t lost a loved one, but this is a very hard change, so I’m taking the advice of a fellow #write31days blogger and allowing myself to grieve. I’m mourning the end of an era–I openly admitted this to my man and told him I know I’m being overly dramatic. However, that is how I feel. I sat in our backyard as planes flew over our heads and thought of how my boys have grown up in this house–I can remember bringing C outside on a blanket before he could even sit up and laying under the shade of a tree that’s no longer there. We’ve played catch, chased each other, played in the water, mud, caught bugs, chased frogs, laughed, and cried in our backyard. I will miss it. I will miss the boys pausing their play to watch a plane fly overhead. I will miss them running circles around the hot tub we rarely used. I will miss Izzy running back and forth, back and forth along the fence barking wildly at the neighbor’s dog.

airplanes last night sandbox

I am fully aware that great things are in store for us–and I wholeheartedly trust that we are doing the right thing, but that doesn’t make it any less difficult. I will do the next thing. I will continue packing boxes, and as I do, I am certain I will shed more tears. I will mourn.


Photos: these are far from technically perfect–iPhone photos taken as the sun was setting–however, they make this Mama’s heart happy. The first is my little man watching “airplane” fly over us, the second was taken on accident by C, and #keepinitreal, I had been crying both from sadness and great gratitude about our times in our backyard, and the third is where C would often sit when we came outside to play. I will forever remember our last night in our first backyard.

Day 9: Gripe or Grateful {#write31days}

I am reminding myself that I have a choice to make: I can gripe or be grateful. Today I choose grateful. (tomorrow might be an entirely different story)

I’m grateful for, in no particular order:

  • my husband–he gave me a sweet card and some of my favorite chocolates last night
  • the fact that we HAVE a roof over our head
  • boxes to put all our stuff in
  • plenty of friends and family who will help us (and already have helped us) move
  • the funds to rent a U-Haul
  • a new house to move into–we won’t be homeless!
  • running water
  • jobs! They help us pay for the new house and running water.
  • my Savior–He knows the number of hairs on my head, and He knows how crazy and overwhelmed I am, and He still loves me and wants me to cast my cares on Him.

Today I choose grateful.

Day 4: Izzy {#write31days}

The only other female in our house, is our dog Izzy. She is my husband’s “daughter.” He loves her like a human being–they cuddle every night, and she craves his attention. Also, if the boys or I are messing with him in any way, all he has to do is say, “Izzy!” and she’s on the attack. I got her from a shelter six years ago as a Christmas gift for the hubby. For two years she was our only “child,” and she slept on our bed with us every night until baby boy two came along. She’s highly intelligent, fiercely loyal, active, loud, and loving. She also has lymphoma.


We’ve known for a month now, and she’s on some medication to see if it will send it into remission–there’s a 50% chance. I dread the day–be is soon or far away that she is no longer with us. The boys LOVE her, and every time we walk in the door after being away, they say “Izzy!” and try to find her. Moving will be a HUGE adjustment, but losing Izzy will quite possibly be harder. Harder to explain, and I’m certain, will bring many more tears than packing boxes does. For now, hopefully we will fiercely love our crazy dog a fraction of the amount she loves us.



Edited to add: On October 18, 2014, Izzy passed away in the arms of her “daddy.” We will forever miss her and are grateful for the way she fiercely loved us.