So, as I mentioned before, my life lately has been the perfect shitstorm.
As you know, my mom passed away in October. It wasn't unexpected, but it still sucked. My sister (who lives in North Carolina, and who at the time was 6 months pregnant) and I had to scramble to get the estate straightened out, get Mom's apartment ready to sell (holy shit, old people save SO MUCH CRAP!!), and deal with some minor issues (when my sister and her hubs were staying at Mom's for the memorial service, they used the shower, which leaked on the lady downstairs and ruined her ceiling and closet and she wasn't happy).
Then in January, my elderly dog started having seizures. Grand mal seizures. It was horrifying. We took him to the vet after the first one, and he said he thought it was probably a brain tumor, because the dog had also been having some neurological issues with his back legs and walking. We put him on phenobarbital, which of course made him dopey and barely able to function. But he was my sweetie pie, and I didn't care as long as he was comfortable and able to eat, drink, pee, and poop normally. He was 14 years old, and had seen me through being single, and nursing school, and dating idiots, and other crises and I loved him very very much. He kept seizing even with the phenobarb, and his walking deteriorated to the point where we were carrying his back end with a sling (which he hated). This was not easy, as he was a large dog (90 lbs). We also had to deal with a weekend during which our elevator was out of order, so my husband and I had to carry him up and down four flights of stairs twice a day, with him barking and howling in displeasure the entire time. It was not pleasant.
Then one night he woke us up at 3 am. He was howling and couldn't get up. He had slipped off his dog bed and was lying on the floor, but couldn't move enough to get comfortable. He drank water and ate a bowl of food hungrily, but we couldn't get him to relax enough. He was panting and miserable, and we made the decision to call the pet ambulance and take him to the all-night vet to have him put down.
Of course the minute the vet techs showed up with their cool sling, he got up and walked to the door. But he fell at their feet, and we still took him in anyway. He ate a banana (his favorite food) in the ambulance, and then another one as the vet was injecting the propofol to put him to sleep. He finally relaxed against me, his head against my shoulder. His body was so relaxed, he felt like a puppy again, the sweet boy I remembered from years ago, not the aging, arthritic, pain-plagued elderly adult he was. I kept my arms around him as she injected the phenobarb overdose, and I felt his heart stop.
I'd never had to put a pet to sleep before; this was my first dog ever. Even though my heart was breaking (and it still is--I'm crying as I type this), I knew we had done the best thing for him. He was never going to get any better. The vet confirmed this by saying, "It was time. You did the right thing." Now, I know they probably teach vets to say this in their first year of vet school, but man, it made me feel better. So, thanks, midnight vet, for being kind to me and my sweet boy at the end.