Thursday, July 09, 2009

Gone Too Soon

No, not that guy. More like this guy:

(Image Credit: Picked up here.)

This post goes out in memory of my big beast of a cousin, Kona, warrior king of the remote kingdom of Indiana, who died yesterday after a sudden, brief illness -- an attack of pancreatitis, the same nasty disease that darn near killed yours truly three years ago. Kona was a beautiful chocolate lab -- serene, majestic, loyal, and large -- who presided over a large family and a hyperkinetic pack of chihuahuas with forbearance and quiet strength. When Moose visited his realm a couple of weeks ago, she smiled as she watched the big guy calmly patrol the grounds while the chihuahuas and the humans wreaked havoc around him, as chihuahuas and humans are wont to do. Kona was ten years old, born in 1999 on my very own birthday, April 1. Our condolences to the brother and sister-in-law of the Moosians and all of Kona's extended pack. We know your hearts feel broken right now, and our hearts go out to you.

After hearing the news about Kona yesterday, Moose ministered to me this morning with even more tenderness than usual. She fussed with my eyes, determined to rid them of the icky sticky gunk that spreads like kudzu every night while she's asleep. We ended up in the shower in something that felt a little bit like a massage and a little bit like a wrestling match as she searched for the right balance of gentleness and force in the effort to get me clean without hurting my increasingly thin and fragile body. She washed and partly dried me, then placed me out on the deck to let a delightful morning sun take care of the rest. When I was dry, she brushed me out, delicately using the flea comb around my eyes and mouth to try to extricate the last of the icky sticky stuff. When finally she was finished, we gazed at one another. "I'm still here," I said. "I know," she said, "but now you're clean and pretty, too." "Satisfied?" "Always, silly old girl," she said with a laugh, "always perfectly satisfied with you." And I know she really meant it.

Save me a place up there in heaven, Kona, a soft place with a view of the pool and a big pack of chihuahuas off in the distance. You do the heavy lifting, I'll do the thinking, and the little guys, well, they can run in circles around us from now until the end of time.

Peace out, and we'll let Usher sing you off, just as he did that other guy the other day:


  1. nice tribute Rox, i'm pouring a little out for my homey Kona

  2. Thanks, Spudz. Big face licks to you and yours.

  3. Hey Roxie! We should get together for a playdate: we can lay about and nap for 23 hours a day together. My moms also start every day saying, "Is Cody breathing?" "Um. Yes." "Hooray, she's not dead yet!" Then they carry me down the stairs to go out, which is a little humiliating but they're so happy each day that I'm not dead that I need to give them that. I'm also on 7 pills a day (proin, thyroid, glucosamine, rimadyl for pain, pepcid to offset the rimadyl, 2 different Chinese herbs), which I get in a clump of peanut butter--YUM! I love the Obama girls. Life in NJ is cool. I'm really sorry about your friend. My commonlaw sister, Jackson, had a lot of trouble with pancreatitis and died 2 years ago from cancer. Now I get all the attention and treats. Love, CodyDolan

  4. Hey there, Cody. Nice to know I am not the only one subjected to the indignity of being carried outside to tinkle. I'm over the whole drug thing, though -- I've been off all my meds since Memorial Day and am in many ways much better (more alert, healthier coat), though I'm still losing weight and can't walk. I am tempted to quote a line Moose's mom is fond of about old age not being for sissies, you know, but, hey, as you say, we ain't dead yet, so let's party on! I think a playdate/nap is a swell idea. Have your people call my people!

  5. Hi Roxie, this is CodyDolan's other mother! We'll definitely call. I imagine parallel play is in order. When can they drive you to New Jersey??! We'd love to see you all. Love, CodyDolan, II

  6. Well, as it happens, the moms may be passing through the Garden State mid-August, though, if alive, I will likely not make the trip, preferring to stay at home and be spoiled rotten by whatever brave, kind soul will be staying with me. Be in touch, though, and keep cranking out those posts, Jill! We bloggers gotta stick together.


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