Mood: hug me
Topic: "Baby Fiona"(7)
Four o'clock is always "doggie dinner time." Exceptions occur to this rule twice a year when time itself is gerrymandered by listless leadership. This has never deterred Fiona from a lobbying effort that corresponds to a full half-hour before implementation. The event is followed by a leisurely stroll around the Shire so that Fiona and her faithful companion Mick, the Wonder Dog, can vacate the sewage system and begin planning for a long night's rest. All of this is relevant only because last evening, somewhere after the evening stroll, and while Frodo awaited the evening news on the black-and-white, Sam screamed for him with the rejoinder that "Fiona is dying.!"
It did not take long to surmise that Sam had uttered a valid prognosis. The beautiful little girl had wet herself, was foaming at the mouth, her head was swinging side-to-side, and her entire body was shaking and quivering uncontrollably. Frodo wrapped her in a blanket and held her tight trying to shush away that which was consuming her earthly presence. He sang, he talked baby talk, he hugged her tighter to his breast, but nothing indicated that she even knew that Frodo was there. Sam continued to pet her in Frodo's arms, while Mick, the Wonder Dog, laid down, and turned his head in another direction. Sam's eyes met Frodo's, and the telephone number for the Emergency Vet Clinic was connected and notice given that Frodo and Sam were on their way with Fiona.
Suburban Atlanta traffic on a Saturday evening is difficult to describe with terminology that would fail to embarass a clergyman. Frodo, holding Fiona in the back seat, yelled to Sam to pass that "asshole" on the right, to run that "fucking " red light, and to forget about some "cocksucker" with a flashing light. Fiona was suffering, and Frodo could not stand that. It took thirty minutes to get to the clinic, and Frodo was out of the car with his precious cargo before Sam could even bring it to a stop.
He was greeted by two young ladies, one of whom took Fiona from his arms and the other started to ask Frodo what services he wanted, and quoting the prices for each and every service. Somehow, as Sam entered the lobby, Frodo kept his cool and told the young lady that his beloved friend was dying, as best he could tell, and that if that were true, then the suffering had to stop--now.
In a minute or two the veterinarian on call heard the same from Sam, and she told Sam that Fiona had a temperature of 108 (normal being 101.1). She advised Sam that Fiona's cognitive awareness was gone. The decision was made.
Frodo realized that his shorts were soaking wet, and his shirt was covered with the salivary output of a little dog in her last half-hour of life. When Frodo and Sam were left alone with Fiona for the last time, he plucked some loose fur to package and seal alongside all the other precious possessions of a lifetime. Then he kissed Fiona, and Sam, and rubbed her tummy while the chemicals accomplished their task. The veterinarians took a paw print and gave the clay-like product to Frodo and Sam, with instructions to bake it in the oven as another rememberance. They had been through this before and they knew their job, and they did it well.
Death sucks, especially when the ordeal experienced by Frodo and Sam upon their great friend was so real and insensitive. If there is a purgatory, then surely the Hobbits experienced a few moments of what it must be like this past Saturday evening.
Frodo attacked the rock hard Georgia clay with the fervor of one seeking catharsis. The Hobbits placed their friend in her bed blankie which bears the emroidered phrase "Living the Good Life" and placed her next to the "Mr. Turtle Pool" that cooled her paws on hot summer days for year-upon-year.
Hand-in-hand, Frodo and Sam walked back inside in order to pay attention to Mick, the Wonder Dog, who had had no apparent interest in attending the services. As Frodo walked him out the front door, Mick turned and looked down the hallway, just to make sure that there wasn't another, meandering slowly behind.
Forgive, dear reader, the language. They are the components of a broken heart.