Friday, May 4, 2012

Dignified .





Around three it clouds over and the air suddenly develops a sharp edge. We set off to the rugby ground at three fifteen. Angus wears a Harris Tweed jacket against the chill. Bobble hat in the right pocket , a chew in the left . Wilf warm and snug in the back of the old Volkswagen. We find a quiet corner and park. Through the turnstile and up a short flight of steps to an end of row seat . Wilf settles down, snorts and presses his flank very firmly and very purposefully against my left leg. Large black nose and two paws jutting out into the space between the rows. Whenever the local farmers leap,cheering, to their feet , Angus , mindful of his slumbering friend, remains seated.

At half time another of our little routines. Sharing a hot dog in the parking lot. Wilf makes a comical Hannibal Lecter sound. Smacking his lips theatrically as each small piece of meat is gently taken, then swallowed. At the end of the match the young fireman playing at scrum half wanders over and asks how Monsieur Vilfee is getting on . '' He'll carry on running until he hits a brick wall " I reply. We both laugh . Wilf has his hair tousled .

The old fellows finally slowing . A big change this week . A gentle drifting . A sweet confusion . His appetite going . This morning no interest in his half croissant when it's offered . A first for this gourmand dog . Last night he wanders out of the door and settles down to sleep in the long grass under the cherry trees . I pick him up at ten and carry him ,still asleep, back into the house . Just the way things should be . Dignified and happy .

34 comments:

  1. Angus. Please, please tell me I shouldn't worry and that the blog and Wilf will go on forever . Suzie and Spice . xxx

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  2. lets hope the brick wall is a long way off, but when dogs take themselves off to sleep under trees I worry..sending hugs...xx

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  3. Thoughts are with Wilf and you during this phase, let's hope it passes and he gets his appetite back.
    If love from all over the world can make it so, then so be it.

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  4. It's been noticeable this last 10 days or so. But he's had so many recoveries, one can keep hoping. Tousle him from me. Would he like a rowie, do you think?

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  5. Oh dear, refusal of a croissant feels like a sad milestone. But oh to spend a morning sleeping in long grass under the cherry trees.

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  6. We all know the end is inevitable, that one day we are going to read the news we dread. I fear that on top of it all we could lose You and the Font as well, which doubles the fear of the loss.
    But I feel you and we have been blessed with time that was once measured in days and has turned into months, and a year. A special blessing after the loss of Digby.
    Sad as I am, I am glad you have had this to savour, remember and treasure.
    Wilf is a truly beautiful dog and he has been rewarded with owners who treasured him in so many ways. He is a truly lucky dog to have had you both.
    Love and loss. Two sides of the coin.
    Xx

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  7. I hope you don't mind Angus, but I have been sending him distance healing (as I am certain many people have in their way). every day, for at least the last 6 months. I was diagnosed with ME two weeks ago and I have been a little distracted. I will step up my efforts! Not yet baby dog, not yet xx

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  8. Dignified and happy, and the two of you together, just as it should be.

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  9. Our beautiful Wilf. Thinking of your little family, with love.

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  10. Wilfee refused the illicit croissant but was happy with the hot dog ! That's the most important for today...
    Our little heroe is tired, of course, his battle is so hard. His mind needs some rest. Sweet dreams, sweet boy.
    Bisous mon tendre Wilfee.

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  11. dignified and happy.....oh wilfie, what a life you have lived....
    xoxo

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  12. Angus, the image of you carrying your sleeping old friend to the car is both heartwarming and heartbreaking. I think my husband and I have been following your blog for a little over two years now, since shortly before Digby passed on. I remember thinking "how unfair!" when you got Wilf's diagnosis what seemed like only a few months later. Yet against all odds, he even made it to his 11th birthday! In spite of the dread of the inevitable outcome, it has been a wonderful experience following your journey with Wilf -- being inspired by not only your loving care for the old family fellow but by his continued will to live. His resiliency and indomitable spirit are daily reminders for us how much we can learn from our canine companions about enjoying and living life in the moment. Still praying for a gentle, peaceful passing in his sleep, if you're very fortunate maybe even in your arms. God bless you, the Font, and sweet, sweet Wilf. And now I'm crying, because I know the day is coming sooner than any of us want.

    May you have yet more hot-dog-tasting-lip-smacking days, Wilf! And may you sleep soundly and wake up to greet your beloved Angus and the Font one more time, and another, and another, and another, and another...

    Hugs and much love from California,
    The Purple and Green Magpies and Mitzi the Dog

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  13. I hope the refusal of the croissant was just Wilf's version of French pickiness and that he'll feel up to it tomorrow. The Hannibal Lechter reference in regards to him cracked me up. At least he didn't ask for fava beans!

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  14. i cannot or will not let myself think it's close to the end.
    i am too selfish i guess.
    kisses wilfee on that wee tousled head of yours!
    and giant bear hugs of love and healing.
    anonymous is right. if love can do it and i think it can...
    you are loved! healing lift all around you little fellow.
    tammy j

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  15. Love and ear scritches Wilf.

    Mamma Heartbeat

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  16. Wilfie - cuddles and a big hug - keep on keeping on you are so good at that - we all believe in miracles now! Bacetti sul nasino - we love you - susanne, Daisy, Foxiie and Kiri ( we are off to the vet!)

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  17. Life is a journey for both man and beast...I am grateful beyond words that we are gifted with the companionship of these creatures. They bring an element and depth to life, that having experienced it...I know I don't want to be without. It brings more definition to our own days about unconditional love, uncontainable delight in the simplest things, and just taking life one day at a time....somehow being able to live in the moment that is "here"... They can not stay with us forever, because it was not a part of the bigger plan. But in the receiving, treasuring, and losing of something so cherished...I have learned. And I am the better for it. Thank you for sharing this journey with Wilf. Most of us reading here have already felt it one time too many and will continue to do so...as we find we cannot live without "that special element" that makes our life whole... Thankful that your puppers have humans that see all of that. God bless Wilf..and you, as you continue these last steps...however many more you are blessed to receive. a (((BIG hug))) for Wilf today.

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  18. While it is sunny here in Anchorage there remains a stubborn bite in the breeze, as I like to call it. Winter's last vestige is hanging on stubbornly. As I hope Wilf will continue to do.

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  19. Dignified and happy. A bit of comfort for our saddened hearts.
    You will be gently open with us concerning Wilf and his health, won't you? It will be easier for us that way. My mum, in her final stages, weakens then rallies. We enjoy each day as if it were the only day. When we get another, we celebrate and carry on as if it were, again, an only. Our love and support are with you.
    We love Wilf as if he were our own. He remains in our prayers.

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  20. I cannot say it any better than Julie May already has stated. Bless you and Wilfie.

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  21. Wilf has always been dignified and happy. Holding all of you close to my heart.....

    Blessings and Love,
    Janelle, Maggie Mae and Max

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  22. As it should be, dignified and happy. Beautiful pictures today, even more beautiful post. Keep on going Wilf.

    With love from your Canadian pals,
    Dianna along with Tor, Willow and Tucker

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  23. Thank You for pic 5! I gave mine hotdogs for breakfast too! Take Care.

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  24. My thoughts and prayers are with you each day as you discover the "new normal"

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  25. Shelby in San FranciscoMay 4, 2012 at 9:58 PM

    Thank you, Angus, for sharing your world and sweet Wilfie with us all. Often I have thought that heaven is here on earth, surrounded by the ones we love and who love us. Wilfie is a lucky boy. But so are the rest of us who have had the benefit of glimpsing the gentle life of this dear, dear beastie and all that he has taught and given us along the way.

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  26. Angus, if I didn't love my pooch so much I'd be in danger of falling for your Wilf. He's the most adorable dog (apart from mine that is).

    I really hope this is just a phase and he gets a second wind...

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  27. What a lovely life you have with the little prince. Keeping him and his family in my thoughts.

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  28. Your posts are wonderful, I've been following them a long time. I love Wilf as if he were my own. Prayers coming your way and lots of love.

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  29. We worry about the "down" days, is he running on empty? Just taking a break? We can't know. We can just love the little guy until its over.

    Blessings on you, Wilfee, stick around a little longer, please.

    Jo, Stella, and Zkhat

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  30. Two gentlemen--one in Harris Tweed, the other in tousled white fur. Both are dignified and happy as they lean into each other with devotion.

    Thank you for sharing such an heart-warming scene with us.

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  31. I don't think I'll be able to bear it when Wilf finally slows to a full stop. Such a gift from the both of you each time I come to read. Be well as can be...I'll be following along still.

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  32. Weeping as I write, I can only say that all the previous comments have said so beautifully all the things I am thinking! I pray for daily miracles with dear Wilf and you and the "Font". You all remain in my thoughts each and every moment. I love you, Wilf...forever.

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  33. I have only been reading your blog for the last few months but have looked forward to seeing Wilf's lovely face with my midmorning tea and also to experiencing your well crafted posts. Please give Wilf an extra gentle pat for me and thank you both for sharing these special moments. Liz from Chicag

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