How do you go about making hard decisions? I just had to make one that I have struggled with for months. One moment, I knew what to do, the next moment I questioned myself. I didn’t want to make it and I knew I had to. The hard decision happened on Monday.
It was a day that I had been dreading and yet I knew it was coming and it was necessary. It was time to say goodbye to my sweet, sassy, little girl with a BIG personality and an even bigger heart, Mika. At a whopping 5 pounds during her prime, she had been mine 15 of her 15 1/2 years in the world. Her personality was far bigger than her little body. She was pure love with a lot of sass. On numerous occasions, especially as she aged, I would whisper in her ear that she had to live until she was at least 30 as I couldn’t imagine life without her.
I was Mika’s favorite person and my mom was a very close second. They were together 24/7 worrying about each other and taking care of each other until my mom passed away in December 2018. I used to tease my mom the last couple of years that I was going to stuff both of them and keep them forever as trying to imagine life without them was too painful. Nine months without my mom has been painful, and yet LOVE is more evident every day. LOVE is within the grief not in the absence of it.
The decision had been made. It was ‘that’ day. I’m walking into the vet knowing it’s time and still praying someone, anyone gives me a valid reason that it is not time. My heart knew the truth even though it didn’t want it to be true. My head tried to pursue me into delaying the inevitable.
Then Dr. Reardon, Mika’s vet, comes in. She has seen Mika several times in the last 18 months. Every conversation about Mika was always met with LOVE, kindness, and compassion. We talked about what was going on and what the options were. She explained everything with such warmth and kindness. Dr. Reardon gave me plenty of time to LOVE Mika up and say my goodbyes. When it was over, Dr. Readon gave me a hug and reassured me I did the right thing.
What Dr. Reardon didn’t know is my 1 million hugs movement and why I believe hugs are so powerful. In the 11+ years, I’ve been giving hugs, I often tell people that while I LOVE them all, my favorites are the comfort hugs to lessen sorrows. I also say these two statements often:
1. Hugs heighten celebrations and lessen sorrows.
2. Share a hug today… as it might just be you who needs it most.
So Dr. Reardon’s embrace was hug #50,751 on my quest for a million hugs. Her hug lessened my sorrows and I was for sure the one who needed it most.
I have hugged thousands of people over the years and I have given that comforting hug to those in sorrow. To be the receiver of a comforting hug affirmed my knowledge of the power of a hug and how I must continue.
Thank you Dr. Reardon for your compassionate and kind care of my Mika and thank you for your reassuring hug for me.
If you are in a place of making a tough decision, I encourage you to:
BREATHE. Take 3 to 5 deep breaths to give your brain the oxygen it needs to make clearer decisions as we tend to constrict our breathing when feeling stressed.
Gain as much knowledge as you can from trusted advisers and doing research. Take in all the information and then LISTEN to what your heart is telling you.
Be gentle with yourself knowing you are doing the best you can with what you have in this moment. Unless it is truly a life/death decision, the vast majority can be changed if and when necessary.
Mostly, my wish for you is to realize that life is so very precious and to make LOVING decisions knowing how precious life is. Let go of little annoyances. Hold on to those who uplift and support you. Hug each other and hug yourself!
Until next time, let your decisions add more LOVE into your life.
Mika – I LOVED you then. I LOVE you now. I will LOVE you forever.
PS. the blanket was given to me when Mika came into my world in 2004, 4 years before hugs became such a big part of it.