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Trying to live without Nitro
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Green Bay, WI
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6 August 2017 - 12:04 pm
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We got through the first week without our beautiful warrior Nitro....the rollercoaster of this journey continues.  I was ok the first couple of days, knowing in my heart we did the right thing at the right time. Then out of the blue, for no apparent reason, I'd break down sobbing, with grief so strong it brought me to my knees. And so it goes, feel ok for a bit, then break down sobbing. I'd thought after things settled down, after the "caregiver stress" lessened, I'd be able to sleep a little better - wrong! I'm sleeping worse than ever. And then I did something that threw another wrench into the mix......

I filled out an application for the Doberman Rescue of Minnesota. I can't even believe I did that, what's wrong with me? One day afterwards, I got a call that a volunteer would be in my area, and would I want to meet up with him? He wouldn't be back this way again for several weeks, so we agreed to meet. The meeting took place on the very day we brought Nitro's ashes home, which seemed like all kinds of wrong on so many levels. What is going on? I know nothing has to happen that we don't want to happen; I'm just praying for one of the signs I so firmly believe in to show me the way. Nitro, mama needs you more than ever.....please help me.

Paula and Warrior Angel Nitro

Nitro 11 1/2  yr old Doberman; right front amp June 2014. Had 6 doses carboplatin, followed by metronomic therapy. Rocked it on 3 legs for over 3 years! My Warrior beat cancer, but couldn't beat old age. He crossed the Bridge peacefully on July 25, 2017, with dignity and on his terms.  Follow his blog entitled "Doberman's journey"

http://nitro.tr.....27_2_1.jpg

"Be good, mama loves you".....run free my beautiful Warrior

Schofield, WI
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6 August 2017 - 2:15 pm
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Oh Paula do you maybe think Nitro sent you a sign and you MISSED it?  The fact that Nitro came home to you the same day as the volunteer was able to come for a home visit seems to (well call me crazy here) but seems to have Nitros strong paw of approval all over it!!  Nitro knows his ❤️ Mom so well!  He knows the void would be deep and ever so hard for you to navigate.  After 3+ years of caring, and worrying and giving him the exquisite care you did he knew the loss you'd feel.  I think he's telling you it's ok!  Whatever you choose to do is ok with him!  He knows the love in your heart is meant to at some point be shared with another.  Not to replace him because we all know that can't happen but to put more joy and love back into your life because we also know that is what Nitro would want for you.  It's going to be really interesting to see who he sends you and when.  Sending you much love and many hugs as you navigate these hard days!  Remember Nitro also turned you into a Warrior!  He's proud of his Warrior Mom!  

Idaho
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6 August 2017 - 2:16 pm
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Oh how I understand what you are going through right now. And oh how we all wish we didn't understand it.

When we lost Gus, we were devastated. Then when Murphy crossed the Bridge a mere four months later, we weren't sure that we would ever be able to leave our hearts open for that kind of heartbreak again. We said that it would be a long time before we could even think of adding another pup to our family. And yet I started looking very soon after that. There were two other dogs that we really, truly considered, but neither of them worked out. Then, out of the blue, Ollie's face came up on the one day that I forgot to click the "black" Lab. The time was right, the dog was right, and we were ready to be head over heels again.

When the time is right and the dog is right, you will know. But there will be no beating yourself up because you are willing to share your love again! Nitro will be sure to tell you that he is happy that you once again have room in your heart.

Kathi

Murphy is a five year old Lab/Chessie cross. He was hit by a car on 10/29/12 and became a Tripawd on 11/24/12. On 2/5/13, he had a total hip replacement on his remaining back leg. He has absolutely no idea that he has only three legs!

UPDATE: Murphy lived his life to the fullest, right up until an aggressive bone lesion took him across the Rainbow Bridge on April 9, 2015 and he gained his membership in the April Angels. Run free, my love. You deserve it!

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6 August 2017 - 3:37 pm
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Darling Paula 🌹

Let me just tell you what happened with me.

3 or 4 days after I lost Eurydice I was siting outside with Douglas and out of the blue I heard myself telling him I was going to have another Dane.

I did not know when that would be but I knew that was what was going to happen.

And then I felt Eurydice's presence SO strong I knew she had her paws all over this.

I called the breeders a few days later and told them I want another girl, related to Miss Cow and as I told them I felt Eurydice's presence so strong again I burst out crying and Marcos felt her presence too and burst out crying like me. 

I know in my heart it is her decision, her marvellous decision and I know she will send me the little girl when I am ready, not before.

Nitro did send you a sign, I believe.

There are no coincidences in this world, really. 

He so appreciated your love and dedication he wants you to feel the same way again and make another baby happy 💝

As Linda wonderfully said no dog replaces another, this will be your new baby and you will learn to love him more each day 💕

As I see it, you are ready to become a new Mom now, sweetie pie 💕🌹

And when that happens Nitro will bark a happy bark so loud from the sky you will feel it in your heart 💘 

😘😘😘🐮💫✨🌟🌹

Eurydice 77kg/170lb Great Dane limping end of April 2016, amputation (right front leg/osteosarcoma) 4 May 2016 6 courses of carboplatin followed by metronomic therapy, lung mets found 30 Nov 2016. 3 courses of doxorubicin, PET scan 26 Jan 2017 showed more mets so stopped chemo. Holistic route April 2017. Lung X-ray 5 May 2017 showed several tennis ball size mets, started cortisone and diuretics. Miss Cow earned her XXL silver wings 12 June 2017, 13 months and 1 week after amputation and 6 1/2 months after lung mets, she was the goofiest dawg ever and is now happily flying from cloud to cloud woof woofing away :-) 

Virginia
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6 August 2017 - 3:49 pm
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Oh Paula, dear sweet Paula.  Ican only say DITTO to the wise words of Linda and Kathi!

We can see it soooooo clearly!!!  There is nothing "wrong" about any of this!   To the contrary!  It's all so right!!! 

And as far as breaking down and sobbing for no "apparent reason"..???????  Of course there is an "apparent reason"  silly girl....your heart is broken into a thousand pieces because you miss your Nitro like crazy!!!!  As much as you thought there would be a "relief" from your caregiver "duties"...the reality is those were not really "duties" at all but rather acts of love!  You miss all the ways you loved Nitro, including all your daily regiment of making sure he got his pills on time, making sure he got his fluid treatments, etc.

Guess I'm trying to say the "relief" was a false expectation to some degree that you placed on yourself.    You hought that would lessen your grief.   Sire, there's a "relief" that his transition was peaceful and that the timing was right.   That wisdom does nothing to stop you from hurting and feeling the void.     So  do NOT beat yourself up for grieving and missing Nitro!

The nights will be rough for awhile...the mornings will be rough for awhile...and so will the days!   To try and put an "expectation" on how we will handle our grief is pretty  much a waste of energy!   GRIEF WILL HAPPEN AND IT WILL HAPPEN ON ITS OWN TIMEFRAME! ''It cannot be ignored or pushed aside by the "rational" mind.  Your heart hurts regardless of how well everything transpired.  Your heart needs to heal and working through the sadness is the only way it can.  And as you've experienced, the sadness hits you like a ton of bricks and knocks you to your knees...many times over!!

And another way your heart heals?    Well, I think Nitro already has that figured out!!!   🙂   Just continue to let things u food as far as following up on the home visit, etc.  And I agree 100% that Nitro has his paws all over this!!!   We, your extended family, can all see that very clearly, even if you can't!!!!   OMD!!!  His ashes returned home the same day??? HUGE SIGN!!! 🙂

Remember how Otis and arranged a home visit for Christine the very week...or even within a day or somof Tess's transition???  

As far as praying for a sign....OMD....your prayers have been answered big time!!!  Just sayn'.   It doesn't mean something will happen in the next weekmor two (hmmmm....or does it?)....it just means pay attention!

Sending you love

Sally and Alumni Happy Hannah and Merry Myrtle and Frankie too!

Happy Hannah had a glorious additional bonus time of over one yr & two months after amp for osteo! She made me laugh everyday! Joined April's Angels after send off meal of steak, ice cream, M&Ms & deer poop!

Virginia
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6 August 2017 - 3:51 pm
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And just saw Teres's post!!!!!!!!!YAAAAAAAAAY!!   SO GLAD YOU WENT "PUBLIC"  WITH THIS EXCITING NEWS 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

Happy Hannah had a glorious additional bonus time of over one yr & two months after amp for osteo! She made me laugh everyday! Joined April's Angels after send off meal of steak, ice cream, M&Ms & deer poop!

Minneapolis, MN
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6 August 2017 - 4:11 pm
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How I wish I could say I did not understand, but I do.  I still think those first days for us at least, we were numb with shock.  Focused on doing what had to be done for him, to release him from a body that had failed him and to do it before that sparkle had dulled to nothing.  Before it became more painful.  It was necessary and we did it.  And then there was a fog of disbelief and shock, but it wasn't unfathomable grief immediately. But that fog lifted and the deep, deep grief came.

You do not have to go through with an adoption now or ever if it is feeling wrong. But I sincerely feel his memory is honored by the act because it is recognition of how vast the void he leaves behind him.  To say that absence is unbearable and you can't live with the silence is a tribute.  And adopting won't change the sad fact he is not there anymore.  Nor will not adopting or getting another dog change it.  But another dog, while not Nitro and not a substitute or replacement, gives you something else constructive and positive to do.  Someone else who needs you, someone to take care of, not someone to take his place.  And in time, you will love, too.  But you will never love Nitro any less.  Never, so it is NOT betrayal.

You have our support and understanding no matter what you decide and whatever Nitro tells you you should do. 

Lisa

Lisa, Minneapolis

On October 27, 2016, nearly 6 months after amputation, and 18 months since his cancer likely started, we lost Pofi to a recurrence of Soft Tissue Sarcoma in his spine quite suddenly.  His Daddy and I miss him terribly along with his canine sister, Mia, and two feline siblings, Lucia and Cliff.

Blog: Pofi, Peripheral Nerve Sheath Tumor Amputation

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6 August 2017 - 6:12 pm
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Paula, I think we all go through the same process.  Relief at first that our beloved companion is at peace.  Then the realization that he is truly gone sets in and it is beyond devastating.  Every little thing reminds us of our loss and the tears hit without warning...again and again.  Those tears are Nitro's due for all the love he brought into your life.

It takes time to even start to accept...and we never fully fill the empty space left behind.  But you will know when it is time to welcome another soul into your life...you will feel completely at peace when the right time comes...and will know that Nitro is happy for you.  I wish there were words that could help lessen the pain you are going through, but only time will gradually take the sharpest edges off that pain...time and memories of the wonderful life you shared with your Nitro.

Sending many hugs, Trini

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6 August 2017 - 6:52 pm
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Dear Paula,

I am so so sorry to hear about Nitro, and even worse, to not have said something sooner.  It has been getting harder and harder to come to the site as I approach the one year anniversary of Otis and Tess passing.  And I was recently talking to my doctor about how the cancer dog sleep patterns continue even though there is no one in this house who truly needs anything at 3:00 a.m.  Sometimes I do think I should have waited a bit before getting Gator, but the house was so empty and once I saw his picture there was no way I could not give him a home, even if Tess was no longer around to need a companion.  (Tess passed the day after Gator was identified as a potential companion - his photo was on my phone😀).  And, as time passes, I see him getting more and more comfortable, although he will always be an anxious dog, and I see our bond developing.  My heart goes out to you right now.  But, your new dog will be so lucky to have you as a dog mom!  

Otis - 106 pound lab/Dane mix, lost his right front leg to osteosarcoma on Febuary 9, 2016.  Four rounds of carboplatin completed in April, 2016.  Lung mets August 25, 2016.  Said goodbye too soon on September 4, 2016.   Lost his adopted sister, Tess, suddenly on October 9, 2016. likely due to hemangiosarcoma.  

Wherever they are, they are together.

Virginia
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7 August 2017 - 4:37 pm
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Paula, there is absolutely nothing wrong with you. One of the best ways we can honor our pups is to rescue another one. I swore up and down when Jake passed that I was never ever having another dog..and then 2 weeks later someone posted this photo here on Tripawds (and that's how Jake sent me Tanner). Rescuing another dog will never take anything away from Nitro. You could take in 10 more today and nothing would ever change the love you have for him, or take his place in your heart. That is impossible! We tend to think there is only so much room in our hearts and that each dog has to share that space. Thats not true! Our hearts grow bigger and bigger with each one!!! Sending you lots and lots of hugs. 

5ca0741e49bd6c64b9acec8de69eed04--so-sad-tear.jpgImage Enlarger

Mom to Tripawd Angels Jake (2001-2014) and Rosco (2012-2015) and Tripawd Tanner. “Whatever happens tomorrow, we had today; and I'll always remember it”  

      

The Rainbow Bridge

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7 August 2017 - 5:36 pm
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It hits like waves Paula, what is going on is your brain and heart are having a meeting of the minds and making sense of all that you've been through. I wish I could give you a hug right now. You are totally normal and this is all part of the process. Do what feels right and know in your heart that no dog could ever take away Nitro's legacy in your life and your heart. If you want to rescue another dog, follow your heart. Only you and John (and Kodi too!) know what feels right for your pack. Explore the idea, see how it fits, and listen to your inner voice, it's never wrong.

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7 August 2017 - 6:18 pm
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Paula,

I know everyone here has you in their heart.  I have to echo what Lisa (Hester!) said in her response.  It is not a betrayal to Nitro to be considering another dog - but you also do NOT have to adopt a dog because you "committed" to signing up as a potential adopter at a rescue.  I can't say that I "know" how you feel because I don't.  I lost MySweetTed just a few months after his amputation.  Nitro was SUCH a warrior and there is a different type of grief (in my opinion) that goes with having so much time and so much GLORY with your sweet boy.  The one thing that I will point out is that you, like I, have other pets - Kodi, right?  I will say that it has taken a full 8 months for our "friendly" cat to even come downstairs since we got Joe.  Our other cat Jack - who was deeply bonded with Ted - is still not at that point.  He is pissed off, unhappy, and has lost a serious amount of weight due to the presence of our new puppy.  I feel terrible about that and although I don't believe in regret, I do have a little regret about not finding a better "fit" for both of them since it has turned our home dynamics kind of upside down....  I don't regret getting a new dog - and he is no where near what Ted is - but I kinda do feel (confession here..) like maybe I should have waited a little longer, and gotten a slightly older dog vice a puppy.  Follow your heart my dear - but please do allow yourself to embrace the grief, and own it.

I wish I could hug you too.

Wanda

Green Bay, WI
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7 August 2017 - 6:54 pm
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Thank you friends, all of you have valid points. We got approved for the dobe rescue, but the boy I was interested in is probably going to be adopted by the people who helped transport him. Then I came across an 8 week old westie male puppy not far from us. Not sure if a puppy would be good for kodi or totally annoying. But I would feel no threat from a westie puppy like I might from an adult dobe with a potentially troubled past for a companion for Kodi. Therein lies the rub. More to come.....

Paula and Warrior Angel Nitro 

Nitro 11 1/2  yr old Doberman; right front amp June 2014. Had 6 doses carboplatin, followed by metronomic therapy. Rocked it on 3 legs for over 3 years! My Warrior beat cancer, but couldn't beat old age. He crossed the Bridge peacefully on July 25, 2017, with dignity and on his terms.  Follow his blog entitled "Doberman's journey"

http://nitro.tr.....27_2_1.jpg

"Be good, mama loves you".....run free my beautiful Warrior

Virginia
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7 August 2017 - 7:22 pm
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Just curious........are you going to see the puppy.....will you take Kodi when you do?  IF you do go take a peek (doesn't mean you have to bring him home....just take a little peek and then leave), post a picture!   'Would love to see a Westie puppy!!! 🙂

Oh, and IF you go see the puppy....take in a few whiffs of puppy' breath for us, okay!!   Looooove puppy breath!!! 🙂

Love to you Paula!

And extra love to Wanda too!   Just give it time Wanda, you've been through a lot!  Joe won't be a puppy forever...just feels like it!!   Interesting abput the cats after all this time.  Wondering if it's something else going on that concerns them abput going "downstairs"?  Maybe Holly can provide some insight.  Maybe it's about a whole new way to re-introduce them....aybe???

Happy Hannah had a glorious additional bonus time of over one yr & two months after amp for osteo! She made me laugh everyday! Joined April's Angels after send off meal of steak, ice cream, M&Ms & deer poop!

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7 August 2017 - 8:42 pm
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Thanks Sally - I'm good.  Good luck to you Paula.

Wanda

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