Sunday afternoon, my companion of 14 years, my loving, sweet boy Harley passed away.
I had actually planned on attending my first endurance ride this weekend, but it was cancelled due to the weather. Otherwise, I may not have been home.
I had just gotten home from washing my "new" (used) car (more on that later) and walked in to find Harley seizing and struggling to breathe by the entry door. Looking at him I knew that he had only minutes left--a trip to the vet was futile, especially with it being Sunday evening. No one would be able to get to him quickly enough.
I placed him gently on the chaise by the window and quickly put the dogs out in their pen. I came back in and spent Harley's final minutes with him, telling him how much I love him, letting him know how thankful I was to have him in my life. He let go quickly once I was with him and passed peacefully. Eventually I found the energy to place him on his favorite cat bed, wrap him in a sheet and bury him in my shade garden in the back yard.
He was old and had been slowly losing weight over the past couple of years, so this wasn't completely unexpected. It certainly didn't make things any easier, though.
Harley has been with me through so much through the years. He's lounged in many a house....
He's put up with many a new furry companion....
He helped me maintain order and civility through the household....
I admit he didn't exactly approve of everything that I did....
But at the end of the day, all Harley ever asked for was to cuddle up in a blanket with me and purr me to sleep.
He and Charlie have been the two old men of the house for as long as I've been divorced.
It's so odd now to be in the house without him. I'm not sure how long it will take before I stop seeing him out of the corner of my eye, or have to stop myself from calling for him at feeding time.
Harley was most definitely a big part of my life and now that part of my life is gone. As sad as I am, what I feel most is gratitude. I am so thankful to have had such a special animal be part of my life for so long.