Finding beauty in the beast

Hello and happy Monday funday. [Blogged while wondering how Comcast is even a thing. Like, why doesn’t it ever work?]

It’s been almost four months since my reason for living went to a place where it rains rubber balls and where he has four legs instead of three. In mentally preparing myself for the inevitable, I planned to enter a dark, dark place where my nights consisted of sobbing into a hair-covered dog bed, sniffing the shit out of old blankets and never leaving my house. But when the time actually came, and on the days that followed, I felt something unexpected.

It was the first week in December when Jake’s back leg really started hurting. We learned it was a tumor. His cancer was likely back. He wasn’t sleeping and when he was awake he could barely move. By the end, I was spending restless nights spooning him on the kitchen floor. A trip outside meant strapping him in a harness, hoisting him up like a suitcase, and carrying what was now basically a two-legged dog outside. It was both physically and emotionally painful. We knew it would be any day that week, and the thought of making that phone call literally killed me.

On a lighter note, for both personal and family reasons, I was able to work from home that entire week. My stint at home may have just been good timing. But I knew it was another validation on this journey. A perfect storm of life events that let me take my time saying goodbye.

With puffy eyes, a congested nose and a broken heart, I waited for the vet to arrive. During our goodbyes, I buried my face in his neck, kissed his paws and found myself filled with something I’ve never quite felt before. It was a sadness, but like a peaceful sad. A sadness that wrapped me into a blanket of contentment.

So when the look in his exhausted eyes told me it was OK to let go, I did. I let go of the emptiness I felt over losing my best friend, and instead reflected on his beautiful life and everything he taught me.


I got to spend that whole last week with my perfect pup. A dog whose happiness and energy was limitless — even with three legs. A dog who lived 13 spoiled years. And a dog who was blessed with more than a full year of cancer-free life.

Finding beauty in sorrow is a theory I didn’t believe in. But the lessons your dog teaches you are surprising. That even in your darkest moments, there’s beauty. You just have to look for it.


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