I have put off writing this post for a long time, well for two months. Tala passed away on April 28th, 2016. I thought losing Mukki last year was hard, losing Tala damaged my soul. We fought like hell to find out what was wrong but she failed fast. The vet decided to do some aggressive testing which came up negative, then she called to tell me that we needed to put her down, she was suffering.
It was noon and we were told to come and sit with her for as long as we needed –we could stay for the afternoon. I was panicking, it made no sense. Within a few weeks, she’d lost over thirty pounds and was just fading away. I rushed to the vet’s with my husband and we sat with Tala, she was so sweet. Just calm and happy. She put her head in our laps and then she seemed to snarl. The technician thought she might be in pain, so went to get the vet for pain meds. I took a final picture of her as she snuggled against my hand.
After the vet tech left, I leaned down to Tala, got real close and said loud and firm: “Tala! –go find Mukki, Hike Hike!” I don’t know why I said it, but it felt right. She looked at me, sighed and was gone. Just like that. Off to get Mukki. Off to run on the Bïfrost and feel no more pain. It was so sudden, I almost laughed when I realized that was the first time Tala ever did what I asked. She was so stubborn and independent. We both held her and cried. When the vet came, she was shocked –she didn’t think Tala was so near the end. I still felt Tala there, so I spent a good half hour telling the vet about Tala, how perfect she was, how precious to me. I was actually telling Tala not the vet, but the vet listened. We hugged her one last time.
Then Tala and Mukki got to say good-bye to us from the Bifrost. On the way home, a sudden hail storm hit and when we got home Quinn was barking at a huge mound of hail on the deck, right where Tala had been staying, ‘her spot’. We collected a bag of the hail and put it in the freezer and then scooped up two glasses and added Midleton’s Irish whisky -our Irish sendoff for my BFF, my wonderful wacky Tala. I can’t tell you how rare it is for a sudden hail storm to pop up out of a clear blue sky in North Carolina at the end of April -it may have been the perfect storm, a total coincidence but I’ll never believe it. I’d like to believe my Grandfather is mushing Tala and Mukki around the top of Mount Washington and they sent us a playful farewell.
I’d like the memory of me to be a happy one.
I’d like to leave an afterglow of smiles when life is done.
I’d like to leave an echo whispering softly down the ways,
Of happy times and laughing times and bright and sunny days.
I’d like the tears of those who grieve, to dry before the sun;
Of happy memories that I leave when life is done.