In early September, I marked the 15th anniversary of bringing my Deaf Betty home from Pets & People in Oklahoma City. My little dog, the second great love of my life, had been gone a little over a month by then, so it was a subdued celebration in 2021. And yet a celebration still, because the day she came home was pure joy, a day when Big Love arrived in my life, all dressed up in a scruffy, barky, terrier suit. I’ve only now been able to write about her in detail, about that last week of knowing she’d be going to her true home.
She was 17 years old when she left, Miss Deaf Betty Cly, and she had a great big little life after her 2006 rescue from a downtown construction site. Mike and I got her as a companion for our other little terrier, Bill, but she was never that. She was mine from the moment I held her. She was there through my husband’s illnesses, there when he died. She saw them all off with her shiny, warm, brown people eyes: Mike, my dad, Brenda, Grace, Anne Marie, Maxine, and too many others in the last nine years. A traveling girl, she’s been out west and down south many times, always on a pillow on my left knee, entirely undisturbed by my loud stay-awake-and-drive music.
That morning in July, waiting for the vet to come, I was given gifts. My friend, Suzanne, took what I’ve always called my angel picture of Boo and added wings and a meaningful rainbow.
This is Boo as her truest self: an angel who blessed my life for fifteen years and who was, herself, saved by angels twice. Of course. They couldn’t abandon one of their own who was here on a mission.
Another friend confessed that my little dog had asked her a year before to make a thank you video for me, because Boo would be leaving this world soon. Jayne then sat on this stunning bit of communication with my dog until the time was right. That video, given to me exactly one year ~ to the day ~ that Boo requested Jayne’s help in making it, a gift I received the very day Boo died, lifts my heart every time I watch it.
Even knowing what I know about consciousness and the continuity of life, about the One of us manifesting in all of these stories, I am stunned that my dog could conspire with a friend ~ in advance ~ to make a video to comfort me when she was gone. Jayne said that Boo conversed “in full sentences” to choose pictures to go with particular memories she knew would please me. (Even writing that, I’m aware of how entirely mad it sounds. “My dog picked out pictures and stories.” What??)
In the summer of 2020, Deaf Betty had experienced a severe bout of vestibular disease. It lasted about three months and nothing seemed to help. Jayne had done a couple of healings with her and she was about to do another.
“I was going to assist Boo for a long-distance healing in July 2020, but first I asked Boo’s permission, before I started the healing session. Boo said, “No,” to a healing session. “I am getting ready to leave, but I would like if you could do a video for my Mom. A thank you from me.” I said, “I have never done a video for a dog, but I suppose I can.” I am thinking what song would you choose for a dog. What would be appropriate. I asked Boo, “Do you have any idea of a song for the video?” Boo says, “Me and You and a Dog Named Boo”. I started laughing. I say, “Of course, that is absolutely perfect, that didn’t even cross my mind.”
I know (KNOW) we don’t die. We lose our human suits, but the essential US remains. That there is One vibrant, loving, intelligent energy from which all that we see (and are) Arises is something I’ve actually experienced, so all doubt is gone. And from that Arising, a small furry creature with big brown eyes can connect with a human Being of light and love ~ yet another Arising ~ to create a video to comfort her mom when she dies.
It was a year to the day. July 16 to July 16. I have to say it again because it’s stunning: that a date of departure is known and accepted and the only thought in a little dog’s brain then becomes “I want to thank my mom.”
So yes, I knew that she would forever be with me, in her little fur coat or not. The heart connection whether with people or animals is never lost. And still, despite knowing the truth, I was shattered. As she was leaving, I held her on my lap in the meditation chair we’ve shared for years, listening to a beautiful song by Jai Jagdeesh, In Dreams. She went to sleep and then her little heart slowed and stopped.
The instant of departure is incomprehensible, even when you’ve experienced it. It seems impossible that one moment they’re here and the next gone from this world. I heard the last beat of my husband’s heart, sat with my dear friend Brenda as she took her last breath. My dad’s leaving was peaceful too. I’ve released many pets in the past through the gift of euthanasia. This was the first where it was planned five days prior and that felt very strange indeed, the deliberate separation of a tired little dog suit from the eternal being within.
The heartbeat here, here, here, gone.
Oh my god, the finality of that.
The finality of it.
And yet, a few days later, in a healing with friend Raven, I felt Boo’s warmth, weight, and the sensation of her coat on my lap. Again, in an energy healing with Annie Bond, just a couple of days after that, her warm, energetic presence. In Florida, in August, again listening to In Dreams, the whirling presence of Boo mixed with my husband, Mike. Intense, loving, joyous.
Finality was an illusion. Not gone. Right here.
I know what they feel like in my energy field. And I know (I know, I know, I KNOW) without doubt that they’re here, always. And it is the nature of the human experience that where absolute knowing exists, doubt can still peek around the corner. Thus the continued signs and wonders from spirit that the knowing is real, that doubt just a passing cloud in the sky.
A few days after she departed, I went to a nearby retreat space for some quiet in the woods. I hoped that I might connect with her directly even though it was only a few days after her death. I was hopeful, despite my sadness, because I had so clearly felt her on my lap in that healing with Raven on Sunday and on Wednesday with Annie.
And early the second morning, there she was as I was sitting outside, surrounded by towering trees and cool mist. She was effervescent, like one of those yard long Fourth of July sparklers. Joyous. It was so vivid and spectacular that it made me laugh. I sensed/heard her saying “I did my job, mom,” and she did, becoming a very old dog while staying with me through a lot of really awful years. She told me her soul name and it could not be more perfect.
How lucky am I that I had her — and that she is still mine. I can close my eyes and feel her on my lap, feel the warmth of her, and her scruffy little fur coat.
But feeling her in such an ecstatic state was incredibly healing. I *want* her to have that freedom, to be as she was before the last couple of years. In my husband’s funeral program, I used a modified Whitman quote: “We were together. I forget the rest.” I’m feeling that with her. That last 18 months of declining health is gone. Annie Bond said “your soul is so peaceful, I feel you flowing.” I feel that too. I still have sinking spells. Boo still sparkles. That lifts my heart. It’s enough for now.
And a little magic with this post: I’ve taken up pet sitting in the last few months in order to get the dog fix that is as necessary for me as air. A small chihuahua named Bruiser was asleep on my lap as I was working this morning, just before I took a break to wrap up this post. He is in the same spot Boo used to occupy, doing the same thing (sleeping on a pillow), and as I stroked his soft little face, my eyes were drawn to the floor next to my chair in this spotless new feather-free house. One of my Boo signs, right there on the floor, a tiny white feather. I found three, out of nowhere, in the week after she left. An incredible gift of a Boo painting, commissioned by dear friends, included a tiny white feather in the lower left corner. She is here. They are all here. Believe. Trust. Know.
And a resource, because I’ve shared this probably 70-80 times or more, on Facebook, via email, one on one. This is one of the most heavenly, trustworthy accounts of what it feels like when our little furry loves are freed from their old and ailing doggy suits. From evidential medium Suzanne Giesemann, From Despair to Joy in Six Seconds. Be comforted. All is well, truly.