Deotrich woke up early this morning and I, having not really slept, got up with him. It was a crisp beautiful Colorado September morning. The sky was that blue that never really comes out in a picture.
We talked last night about what I wanted to do with Emma's body. Deotrich's dog who died an number of years ago we took to have creamated. But as I thought about that, I just couldn't do it.
I was very stunned with my response to the idea. I have always thought that cremation was the best thing. I was once blest with experiencing an actual funeral pyre of a dear friend. It seemed so right and primal. Way more instinctivly correct than a funeral home and grave burial. I have made it clear to my friends and family that I would like to be creamated and scattered.
But as I petted my dog, I couldn't stand the thought of it. I couldn't release her body that I had bathed, clipped, brushed, snuggled with, cried into, been protected by, and loved so completely into the hands of a stranger. I couldn't do it.
So my loving husband went out in the early morning with pickaxe in hand to dig a grave large enough for my big dog. Colorado front range is not blessed with much in the way of actual soil so it was a true undertaking.
I lined the grave with old tee shirts of ours plus one that Meriel had given us. (Meriel's on walkabout right now and I haven't told her as I don't want to spoil her vacation. But Emma is her god-dog and would have wanted it that way.)
We put her in her grave as the sun started to warm up. It really is a beautiful day. Warm in the sun but the air is crisp. I scattered herbs on her body. Hyssop which was used to scent the path to the next life, lavender because I love it and love her, and a pretty blue flower that is in full bloom right by where the grave is.
I have in mind to paint a stone with her name and such but until I get it done, I gave her a plain head stone from the old garden. I have always wanted to have some standing stones on the property. I put on at her head.
The place where Deotrich chose to dig is at the head of the old lavender bed. It's a great location. She can still watch over the house but can also watch the road.
Her decline was graceful and slow. Even so, I did fight it tooth and nail. I realised last night all the things that I had been doing to fight off her aging. There were so many things that I did everyday that I don't have to do anymore. I hadn't really realised how many things until I started thinking about not having to do them anymore.
But I hope for this sort of end for me and mine. I got to be with her, she went very quietly and peacefully. She was ready. It's me that is struggling with the end of her life.