I sort of knew after she turned 13 that our days together were limited. That still did not prepare me for absolute crushing pain that I feel after losing my beloved chihuahua… my baby… Aayla. I really thought we would have at least another year or two. That all came crashing down when she started becoming ill last weekend. I took her to the vet and he diagnosed her with a bad infection, a worsening heart murmur, and fluid on both her heart and liver. He gave her antibiotics and a pill to hopefully relieve the fluids on her organs. She stopped eating. She couldn’t poop and barely peed. It was obvious that she was in pain and getting worse. On Friday April 21, 2023… I had to let her go. It was the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do but I knew it was what was best for her. I’ve been crying ever since. I can’t believe she’s gone. She was always by my side and now she’s not. I don’t know what to do without her. Part of me has always wished that I would be the first to die so that I’d never know a time without her. That’s not possible now. I’m not suicidal, just in a great deal of unimaginable pain. I keep looking down for her and she’s not there.
I chose to have her cremated. Her ashes should be ready to pick up in a couple of weeks. I went searching through Etsy late last night to find an urn for her ashes. I finally found one that I liked and that I could actually afford. It should be here via the mail around the same time as her ashes are finally back home. I haven’t decided where to put the urn yet. Maybe on top of my tallest bookcase, so she’s always in view.
I still remember her gotcha day. I was living on my own in Belleville, IL back in October of 2009. I had to drive on the other side of St. Louis to meet her. The moment our eyes met as I raised her to my face, she licked my nose. It was love at first sight and I knew she was going to be my little buddy. I wasn’t used to driving in St. Louis and I didn’t have any GPS device so I got lost. At rush hour. Going the wrong way during rush hour. Aayla just sat on my lap and snoozed while occasionally looking up at me for reassurance. Eventually, I did make it back to my apartment. She couldn’t stand to sleep alone in her little dog bed and I was afraid, due to her tiny size, that if I put her in my bed I’d roll over on her. So, I slept on the narrow couch with her resting on my chest. She fell right asleep.
She was the absolute best emotional support dog. No matter how bad I felt, she was always there with a few licks, cuddles, and nose nuzzles. More than a few times in the past several years I have thought of suicide. Not wanting anything to happen to Aayla always stopped me. She truly was in many cases my reason for living. I don’t know what I’m going to do now. I’m in so much pain and she’s not here to help me.