A friend very close to me had to put her dog down this week. Just like the film Marley & Me, this dog was special and not like other dogs. He had an ability to soothe my friend’s soul in a way no drug could touch. Marley has helped her through the pain of multiple failed IVF attempts and the deep sadness when she finally conceived but discovered the baby was a downs syndrome and had to terminate the one successful pregnancy she had experienced. Distraught, she turned to adoption, only for her husband to turn his back on the idea when she was due to finalise plans with a social worker. Through all of this her dog sought her hand when she was in despair and gave her comfort. He knew when she was feeling low and knew when she needed him.
The final straw was when her husband announced he wanted a split . Initially this was an amicable agreement until she discovered that he had been having an affair several months prior to the split. My friend was at an all time low but she had her loyal friend, the woman’s best friend to help her out of her grief.
Now he is gone and my friend is at a loss. She turns to her ex-husband who is also sad because the dog’s death marked the end of a life that began when they were a couple embarking on the path to fight infertility. His death marks the end of a difficult life-changing phase. She can find temporary solace with her ex, but of course it lacks depth. Family are also close-by. But she has to go through the firsts alone – the first return to an empty home with no dog to greet you, the first missed walk in the morning and the last walk before bed.
I only hope that the end of one life marks the start of my friend’s life and a positive future ahead – I couldn’t think of a more deserving person to be on the receiving end of some good news.
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