29 months an angel

WOW … it’s been a couple months since I’ve updated Shelby’s blog. And it’s not for not missing her but rather being worried about saying the same thing over and over. How much I miss those velvet ears. Miss that cute and curious face. Miss our snuggles, cuddles, adventures, laughter and tears. Shelby was the ultimate in what a soul-mate should be. She was always up for an adventure, she lived like a dog – truly in the moment, every day. She was SO happy. I swear she smiled and laughed. It was a simpler time when I adopted Shelby as a young 20-something. I never thought our story would ever end. Three years ago this month, Shelby got really sick. We got the diagnosis we didn’t want to get. Hemangiosarcoma. One of the ugliest and most aggressive cancers out there. One to two month survival. Chemo would maybe buy us a month.

We got EIGHT more amazing months together. My fighter girl. She took her chemo like a champ. And in the middle of all this, we finally amputated that broken leg that never seemed right again.

Shoulda, coulda, woulda… I work SO hard each day to not live with this in the back of my mind.  Some days are harder than others.

Lately, I have had a really hard time with not having Shelby in my world. The last couple of weeks have been really tough; maybe it is summer coming to an end, coming off the vacation with the sidekick and knowing how much Shelby would have loved that particular adventure, processing some underlying guilt about my life with Shelby and how we never did enough until it was too late. How I wasn’t always there for her in my desire to “hit the town” and “have a life” and she was always patiently waiting at home. I am beating myself up SO much and over-compensating with the sidekick in that I rarely go out so I don’t waste one precious minute of her life.

Shelby tossed me a shiny new penny and dime a couple weeks ago on my run. It’s been a while since she has sent me a sign so I know she knows and feels how much I am missing her. They say the pain comes in waves and oh my goodness is that true. I haven’t felt this kind of pain in my heart since Shelby passed. It has been hard for me to be supportive and a valuable member of this community that I love so much because my grief is back and it is raw again.

I know this too shall pass… as well as I know that Shelby really comes to me when she knows or sees that I am struggling with something. It is the price we pay for loving so hard. I also feel memories of Shelby slipping away and that pains me as well. There are days I can stare deep into her eyes in the many photos I have or watch the limited videos I have of her and she feels like a stranger. It is hard to explain but I also have this same challenge with memories of my father that passed away almost 20 years ago. I guess it is how my brain and heart choose to cope with the pain but it seems truly unfair to me. I want to remember more of the good and less of the bad and for some reason, the bad is was pushes to the forefront. Perhaps because I truly am a “glass half empty” kind of girl!

All I know today … on her angelvesary day … is that I miss her SO terribly much. I miss a simple time. I miss the innocence of our youth. I miss who I was.

I love my little sidekick – more than I know what to do with – but I also fear for the day that she and I have to say goodbye and she gets to meet her big sister in heaven. But I know that love lives forever in my heart. That love never dies. That true love, the once in a lifetime love that I had with Shelby, is eternal. Still the love of my life, my soulmate, my best friend. I miss you sweet Shelbs… don’t be a stranger! Mommy needs you!

Beach Girls Always!

My silly girl!

Who Dat!?! Geaux Saints!

Author: mom2shelby

Mom to 13 year old Shelby - Jack Russell/Shiba Inu mix. A rescue dog that was born in New Orleans. Shelby is a spirited, smart and happy little dog who loves to run, play, go to the beach (we live in LA) and ride in the car! She is my best friend and the true love of my life!

6 thoughts on “29 months an angel”

  1. Oh, I feel for you SO much, Alison and I relate to so much that you say. Shelby was truly your soulmate, and still is. Such a sweet and beautiful girl, just look at her little face – so happy, so secure so totally and utterly loved.
    I lost my baby Billie, nine years ago. She was my twenty-something girl, and she died aged ten from a brain tumour. In a cruel twist of fate my father died two weeks later from the same thing. I still miss my Billie terribly. The one thing I would say that has maybe got a little easier is that now, had she lived, she would have turned 19 in May. That really would be VERY old for a Staff, in fact for any dog. So I guess I think it’s very unlikely she’d still be around, even without that wretched brain tumour and that makes me feel a little bit less robbed. A bit of an odd way to think perhaps, but grief can twist your mind in all sorts of ways.
    The other thing I just wanted to say is that you talk about how hard its felt for you to be a valuable and supportive member of this community. Well you have CERTAINLY been that to me. I can’t tell me how much I’ve valued your comments, how much they’ve reassured me or made me laugh and smile. So please don’t underestimate the impact of your contribution. Truly, it has meant the world to me.
    With love,
    Clare xxx

  2. Not sure if you feel the same, but I feel like Otis is somehow still alive in this community. In fact, that he and Shelby and the others will always still be here in this community.

  3. Awe Alison thinking of you and Spirit Shelby today. None of us can look back to our younger years and not wish there were things we would do differently if we could. That’s all a part of maturing and learning. Shelby loved her life with you. That’s why she was always such a happy girl. She couldn’t miss what she didn’t have. She just knew she had you for a Mom and you made her life complete. Now she watches you and Jasper from the heavens and gently guides you and shows you she’s always going to be there for you when you need her most. Be kind to yourself Shelby would want you to be. Look back at not what you felt you did wrong, but look back at those things you got completely right. And there were many! Much love and many hugs!
    Linda, Riley & Spirits Mighty Max & Ollie

  4. Well said Clare, Christine and Linda….. Alison, you ARE a huge part of this community – we all contribute in our own ways, in different ways, and that’s why it works. Your helpline phone call yesterday is a perfect exapmle. I hope I face and deal with Nitro’s inevetible future as gracefully (yes, gracefully) as you have. Yes, Alison, be kind to yourself.

    Paula and Nitro

  5. Alison
    You’ve been there from day 1 of my journey with Zeus. I wanna cry when I read your blog cause I know I will never get over Zeus, ever. Shelby was soooooo lucky to have you and vice versa. All the Tripawd parents are such special special people. Our Tripawds are special animals and extremely lucky they have us. You made her life happy and you chose to do chemo and extended it beyond what medical science gave her. And you know you’ll be playing with her again one day on a beautiful beach just across the bridge. She sits on dads lap now, waiting for you.
    Deb Belle and Angel Zeus xo

  6. Even through tears, seei g pictures of Shelby always make me smile! They always remind me of how loved she is. She was the center of your Universe and she knew it! We know it!!

    Shelby always sends you messages of her presencw when you need it 🙂

    Yeah, it’s hard to remember much past the “journey memories” because of the intensity of the time.

    I had to chuckle about you concerned about saying the “same thing”. You are a silly girl! Of course you say the same things sometimes because those are the “things” that define her and define the two of you together! Also, it’s good for newer members to get to knkw this special girl with sooooo much personality who is so loved by all of us! 🙂

    You and Shelby (and Lil’ Jasper Lily too!) are a very important part of the foundation of this community!

    I like what Deb said about Shelby sitting in yiur Dad’s lap waiting for you…..sweet!

    Lots and lots of love always

    Sally and My Chunky Spiritual Being Happy Hannah and Merry Myrtle and Frankie too!

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