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My Xena Bear


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My Xena was 15 yrs old when I had to put her to sleep yesterday. She was my BabyBear. She has been the light in my life and I cannot begin to tell you how profound of a sorrow I feel in my heart. She was maybe 4 weeks old when I found her. She had blue eyes and the spirit of a fighter. I was just going through my divorce and she rescued me. For 15 years, she would look into my eyes and kiss my heart. She was always there with me. She was a great traveler and loved to play. She especially loved to drink from my water glass, eat cantalope and sleep belly up in the sun. On her last day, she gave me one last kiss in the morning.

She went through a lot in her short life. She ate a dryer sheet and had emergency surgery. She made it through a serious ear canal removal surgery, multiple ear infections that seemed to never end but the one thing she couldn't fight was heart failure. Her heart grew and eventually, water started collecting. I took her to her vet who removed the water but told me that she was on the countdown now. Not two weeks later, last Sat eve, she started panting hard again, breathing through her mouth whenever she moved. She looked at me and I knew. It was time for me to make that decision. She was tired. I never left her side and Monday morning, when her vet opened, I took her in. I just couldn't let her go through any more pain or suffering no matter how much I wanted her to stay with me.

When I took her in, I wrapped her in her favorite blanket and a towel that had my scent on it. I laid her on the table and when the doctor gave her the drug to make her sleep (before the one that stopped her heart), she got sleepy but then stood and fought it, as if to show me she was still that fighter just one more time. I looked into her eyes and told her I will love her forever and I was here for her. I said I was sorry for putting her through this and after she passed away, I cried like a baby. She was diagnosed with cardiomyopathy three years ago last July so I knew this was coming. And every birthday of hers, every Thanksgiving, every Christmas, I wondered if this was the last one. I know I had more time than most get and God knows, I thank Him for every minute but I just didn't know the amount of pain I would feel. No matter how much I tried to prepare, nothing could prepare me for this.

I shake. I cry. I'm so sad that my heart hurts and I feel broken. Down to my soul, I hurt. I just can't stop randomly crying or thinking about her. I know it was the right decision but she's gone and I'm struggling to work through that. I don't know what to do. She's gone. I don't know what others have done or how they have made it through each day. I didn't want to go to sleep last night because that meant yesterday was over, the last day I saw her and got to look into her eyes. Please help me -- tell me how to get through this, how to stop crying, how to accept that she's gone. I know one day she and I will be together again, but until then, how do I accept she's gone, that I will never be able to pick her up again and hug her, that I will never kiss her nose again or hear her purr.


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Kristina, my dear, I am so very sorry for your loss. Clearly your Xena, your precious BabyBear, was a very special "person" in your life, and I can only imagine how your heart aches for her now. Those of us who participate in this forum are very familiar with that kind of heartache, and you are among kindred spirits here. You ask "how to get through this, how to stop crying, how to accept that she's gone" and I can only tell you that you get through it one small step at a time, surrounded by the sort of support you will find here. I urge you to let the tears come, as often as they must. They are there for a reason, and I hope you'll accept them as a legitimate and healing part of your grief. As for accepting that she is gone, I suggest that for now, you don't concern yourself with acceptance. It takes a while to acknowledge the brutal reality that your beloved is no longer here with you in the physical realm. Everything in you is railing against that reality, because you want so badly for it not to be true. Slow down. Let the tears come. Feel whatever it is that you need to feel. If ever there is a time to give in to those feelings and embrace your pain, now is the time. Share with us here in writing what you're thinking and feeling. If you have the energy, the time and the ability to concentrate, do a little reading about pet loss and grief, so you'll see that your reactions are normal. Spend some time reading the posts and threads in this forum, so you'll see that you are not alone. We are here for you . . .

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I am so sorry you lost her, your steady companion and friend. You ask how to get through it, the same way I did when My sweet husband died...one day at a time...in the beginning, it had to be one moment at a time, one day was too much to handle. You will cry, you will miss her, but with time, you will learn to carry her in your heart, more than a memory, a living love that looks forward to the day you will join with her again.

In other threads here there is posted a link to "the Rainbow Bridge", I hope you will visit it and find comfort in it.

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Hi Kristina,

We put our wonderful friend and compananion Beechums to rest this week as well. Like your Xena Beechums went through a lot in life, but never let it stop her from enjoying it. I think that is part of the reason it might have been so hard for us to make the choice for them, because we knew their zest for life and fight to survive.

I just wanted to tell you, I am feeling the exact same way as you. Since the procedure on Weds morning I have been a mess. I knew I would feel grief, I have lost humans I love in life, but I was not prepared for intensity of the grief I am feeling. I too have been crying randomly throughout the days, not able to sleep, and when I close my eyes replaying the last moments over and over. I have brief minutes where I feel ok, but quickly I am slammed with reality that I will never see or touch her again, that we will never share another cuddle, that she will never be there as my comfort when I am alone.

Speaking from my experience with grief in the past after losing my friend of over 15 years to suicide, I know that time will heal our hearts. We will never forget our friends, and we will always miss them, but as time passes we will be able to recall those happy momemts that make us smile and think of our beloveds without breaking into tears.

For me this site has helped a lot. I posted my story and have been replying to others. Getting the chance to talk about my feelings and offer words of support to others is helping.

I am also going to compile a photo book of Beechums and have it printed, and I am going to write her a letter.

I am thinking of you today, hoping that we both find a few moments of peace.

I am so sorry for your loss, but Xena was blessed to have a friend like you.

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