We Climbed before the Klimb 4 Kim...

We Climbed before the Klimb 4 Kim...
1997's Climb

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Woops! There Goes Gravity!



                 All good things must end...for Bella, she was so good.  And we were blessed to have her in our lives for just over 6 years.

   

                  I believe I've told the Bella story before - how, just a couple weeks after our girl Zona passed from spleen cancer, Kim began researching puppy rescue organizations in Tucson. She searched online daily...waiting, watching.  We visited several, finally ending up with B.A.R.K.   And Kim spotted Bella, carefully picked her up, whispering to her, Bella snuggling into Kimmy's hair...I could see the connection and knew...

                  Just 6 months later, ala 'The Art of Racing in the Rain' by Garth Stein, Kim was diagnosed with cancer...by then, Bella was entrenched in our hearts - an integral part of our family.  She was a fixture by Kim's side as she battled...

                 ...and when Kim became an angel, Bella herded the kids.  Literally.  She would go room to room providing comfort and finally we would all be in the same place.  Her job done, she would lay down with us and just watch - to see who needed comforting...the intelligence, the knowing, shining brightly in her eyes.

                  She loved her kids and they loved her...


She would take turns sleeping with each of them...



She loved hiking (Tanque Verde Falls) and we were able to take her up Mt. Lemmon, Madera Canyon and to the beach (Laguna and Ocean Beach).  She was so spirited and enthusiastic!!



                           Bella was so sweet - she always let me hold her, wrapping her forearms around my neck, hugging me...


She loved to play sports with the kids.  She used her paws so well, she could catch a football with her mouth, securing the catch with her paws.  She could trap a soccer ball and really loved when the kids played hockey with her, slap shotting a tennis ball through the house with her in mad pursuit.

About a year before she died, Cody and his fiance' Jessica moved in with us, bringing Bella a new best friend...Simba.


They were pretty unseparatable, playing tug of war with each other, chasing lizards and tennis balls in the back yard, going on walks, curling up on the couch together...

But, then, we noticed a change in our Bella.  Sleeping more.  Needing a hand up into bed.  Cody took her to the vet for me numerous times.  Many tests were run.  Everything came back normal. 













                     I could feel it building.  My tsunami dreams had steadily begun to occur again...I just didn't know why.  Or from what direction it would come.
                    It's that suspense.  Of not knowing.  That makes us most uneasy.  And I wasn't sleeping well again...













                  When I would fall asleep, it was shallow.  I needed to be able to hear Bella.  To hear if she needed my help.  The sound of her ragged, labored breathing evoked flashbacks...and when I did finally go down deep enough to dream, sure enough, Bella would have an episode that would drag me from my dream world back to reality.
                  It is an odd struggle, when one is rushed awake.  One minute, dreaming, unaware that it is a dream...as something from the real world beckons, the fabric of the dream begins to unravel, and for me, it is a desperate, upward struggle, shaking off the world from the dream and clawing back to reality - with urgency - knowing I am needed.
                 When I saw the movie Inception, starring Leonardo DeCaprio, it was an 'ah ha' moment.  The scenes where they are awoken using a technique called 'The Kick'.  That's how it feels.  The world you believe, at the moment, to be real, being heaved apart as you are dragged towards awakening...



Finally, xrays were taken and the diagnosis...lung cancer...floored us all.  Dr. Burrows could not believe the amount of tumors that appeared in Bella's lungs.  We were devastated.  We made Bella as comfortable as we could.  The look in her eyes...pleading...begging me to help...once again, I was helpless.


We are left with many wonderful memories of Bella.  Part of our family.  She came into our lives just as we were about to need her most - only we did not know that.  She gave all of herself to us, there while we cried and grieved.  There to share in our holidays and vacations.  Our family re-building.  So strong, so stoic...


Thank you Bella









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