My Journey

The “Rainbow” Bridge

Okay, now I have to be completely honest. This post is NOT about aviation, safety, flying… or anything even remotely “fun” as my “About” line suggests my blog is. But as my blog has started to develop over the past few months, I’ve realized that I use this page as my outlet in this busy, busy world. And if I only share the happy, successful moments in my life; I’m leaving out the milestones of my life… milestones that can really explain my outlook on certain topics and milestones that really define who I am and where my life is going.

So what this post is about is the love and eventual loss you share for your pets.

Tonight, my family and I had to put our beloved Nutter “J.” Butter to sleep.

IMG_0117She wasn’t the most cuddly dog ever but on occasion you would get a look from her that just showed that she was really happy to be with us and content with life.

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Her favorite thing to do definitely was sleeping… anywhere she could! On the couch, in the car, or even on the bed until the late hours of the morning. Even on long road trips, she was the perfect travel companion (as apposed to our Yorkie that likes to stand on your head while you’re driving and manages to roll down the windows by crawling on the driver’s side door & hitting the window buttons).

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Nutter’s favorite toy was a Christmas present the first year we had her… a stuffed squirrel named “squirrelly.” She loved playing catch with it as soon as my dad got home from work every night. It was the most active she was all day (most days) and it was the point in the day that you could really tell she was happy to be with us.
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Nutter Butter was only with us for a short time, about a year and a half. I wasn’t present for the entire year and a half as I lived in a different state than my parents… but since October we’ve been living as one happy family and I’ve really gotten to enjoy NJB’s company.  I know that Nutter was there for the last few week’s of my “first” dog’s life, Oreo; and for that me and NJB will always have a close bond – the love of Oreo.

But unfortunately, as many of us know, dog’s lives are very short and Nutter Butter was a very sick dog. Over the last few weeks she went from being our “tank” (she looks small and fluffy but she was secretly almost 20 pounds!) to being a mere 13 pounds with her spine and ribs poking out. From the time my parents got her home, they always noted that there was something off about NJB health wise – we think it may have been Cancer.

Over the last two years, my parents and I have had to say goodbye to 3 of our beloved pets. It has been absolutely heartbreaking.

Annie was sort of like my sister growing up. See, me and my (actual) sister are 12 years apart… I can’t remember my sister ever living at home. But I can remember Annie. From the time I was in middle school until the point that I went away for college, Annie was always there. Through 2 moves, many dogs, and very important milestones, Annie was our rock. Annie was the one constant in my life (besides my parents & sister obviously). I knew when I came home from school Annie would be waiting for me in front of the door. Ready to go outside and for a cookie break. Annie was my best friend, confidant, and constant throughout middle and high school. I cried for hours when my parents called and told me they had to put her to sleep because her back legs finally failed at 12 years old.

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Oreo was our first “small” dog — before Oreo all we ever had was big dogs (2 Saint Bernards at a time!!) and I wanted my “own” small dog. I finally got her for Christmas one year. Oreo was also a constant through my later middle school years and all through high school. Her quickly deteriorating health and sudden death took my family by surprise only a few short months after Annie passed. We were all devastated.

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(Oreo did NOT like having her picture taken!)

They are all now in a better place though. It breaks my heart to see a pet you love so very much quickly make a downturn health-wise. We try to make them as comfortable as possible for as long as possible, but you can’t stop the inevitable.

Annie, Oreo and Nutter Butter are all now over the “Rainbow Bridge” playing tenny-ball and pully-rope while enjoying endless treats and no pain with all the other dogs we’ve had over the years. (My family likes to adopt the older dogs that no one else will adopt so they can live out their last few years of life in dignity).

It has been a difficult, but I think writing about it definitely helps me. I’m very quiet and reserved when it comes to loss and mourning but I think in this situation blogging about it may allow me that closure that I so desperately need.

Thank you for reading.

I’ll be back in a few days to recap the WAI Conference and other aviation-realted topics per the usual.

xoxo Chrissi

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