And then there was none.

Ginger - Saying Goodbye

by Amy Flanigan on February 1, 2014 · 75 comments

As I sat in the waiting room at the vet’s office, all I could think was, “Am I really here again? Going through this again? Only six short months after losing Ebi?”

Ginger sat on my lap, frail. Shaking. Looking at me with sad eyes. And right next to me was a young couple with a puppy. Maybe 12 weeks old.

I hated them for a minute.

They’re starting a new life and one of mine was ending. 


It’s all about life and death, isn’t it? Babies are born every day…and elderly people pass. People get puppies and kittens every day…and someone is faced with the terrible decision of putting their dog or cat down. Every day. We know this. And it doesn’t help.

Do the details matter? Does it matter that Ginger needed surgery? Does it matter that she didn’t recover; that the antibiotics weren’t helping. That she wouldn’t eat. That I was back and forth to the vet every single day for over a week pumping her with fluids and pain medication. That I did everything I could to keep her. Just one more day.

No, the details don’t matter. Cancer got her. Just like Ebi. So insanely healthy for 15 years and then in the blink of an eye, cancer got both of them.

Cancer is such an asshole.

Ginger and Ebi

Ginger really wasn’t the same after Ebi died. Something in her sort of checked out a little. Litter mates…like losing a limb, I have no doubt. But she was still precious as ever. Always my needy one. My constant companion. My licker.

But last Thursday, she didn’t have any kisses left for me. And that’s when I knew.

And now they’re both gone. Neither one are here to greet me when I walk through the door. Neither one to sit on the couch with me, or sit on my lap while I type. Just empty beds and vacant leashes.

The silence in the house while the kids are at school is deafening.

I hope they are together again. I hope Ginger is sitting on Ebi’s head. I hope they’re chasing dragonflies. I hope they’re relaxing in the sun. I hope I see them again someday. I hope.

Me and the girls

Rest in peace, my sweet girls. You brought joy to my life that you will never know…and you will be with me always.



Leave a Comment

{ 75 comments… read them below or add one }

Barbara | Creative Culinary August 11, 2014 at 12:05 pm

I could have written this post and yes, you started me bawling again but I’m OK with that. I loved my little dog so much; she’s always worth a few tears.

I wrote a post too…would love you to meet my Abbie; I’m hoping all of our beloved animals are romping together somewhere waiting for us to show!


Megan July 3, 2014 at 9:56 pm

Dear Amy,
May your memories of your babies bring you joy. May shared remembrances with your family of special doggie moments bring you laughter. And may the sadness of missing them be replaced with the awe of having such a wonderful blessing in your life.
Wishing you the best!


Amy @Very Culinary July 6, 2014 at 8:37 am

Thank you, Megan <3


Andrea May 21, 2014 at 12:09 pm

Sorry for your loss.


Amy @Very Culinary May 21, 2014 at 1:05 pm

Thank you, Andrea.


Shannon April 23, 2014 at 3:49 pm

I feel your pain, Amy. April 9th we had to put our 15 yr old black lab to sleep because of cancer. The last of all our furry family members. I think our house is too quiet as well, even though we have a 5 yr old son. We all miss Reba and I know we will see her again some day. Your babies are together, healthy, happy and playing. Hugs to you my friend. <3


Amy @Very Culinary April 23, 2014 at 4:45 pm

Thank you, Shannon. Even months later I can’t verbally talk about them without crying. Miss them terribly. I appreciate your note <3


Kim March 12, 2014 at 12:27 pm

Hugs and prayers t0 you. It’s been 2 years since we lost our Annie Angel to cancer. Your two girls are together and playing just like my family’s two girls.


Amy @Very Culinary March 12, 2014 at 7:29 pm

Thank you, Kim <3 It gets a smidge easier every day, but I will never ever stop wanting them back or missing them. Just typing this makes me sad. I hope they're someplace together and happy. I need to believe that.


hailey February 13, 2014 at 9:41 pm

Brought tears to my eyes. :’(


Sherry February 6, 2014 at 12:08 am

What everyone has said–ditto from me. But there is not “none,” as I see and feel it. There is you and a million memory dots from all the moments–big and small–you shared with Ginger and Ebi. You know this already from the time since Ebi left. Ginger wasn’t the same and neither were you. But after the first hundred flushes of deep pain, we settle into a time when those who have died–human, canine, feline–are sources of loving laughter as well as empty space. They live forever in your heart. And now you have inserted them into all our hearts as well.
Thank you for trusting us with your grief.


JulieD February 5, 2014 at 11:27 pm

You have a way with words, you’re a beautiful writer. I’m so terribly sorry for your loss. Unfortunately, I know the depths of grief you’re going through. And I can say is sorry and I know it doesn’t help. I wish I could hug you in person. Lots of love and hugs to you and your family. xo


Susan February 4, 2014 at 5:53 pm

Thank you for sharing your story – you are not alone. I am so sorry for your loss and oh how I can relate… I too lost my precious beagle only 2 months ago. You were lucky to have twice the joy and for 15 years! That is a good innings! I only had 6…. A life cut in half by invertebral disc disease with no technology for treatment / surgery where I live. She was in too much pain for me to fly with her to Boston. One day we will be able to open our hearts to another but for now I still stare at her bed beside mine and our daughter is sleeping with her stinky toys! I hope our darling beagles are all romping pain free at the Rainbow Bridge and not missing us as much as we miss them….. Until then ~ they will be with us always.


Rebecca {foodie with family} February 4, 2014 at 4:38 pm

I had to wait to read this until now because I just couldn’t… I’m so sorry, Amy. I am so sorry.


julianne February 4, 2014 at 1:31 pm

i am so sorry for your loss. my fiance and i lost our pup to cancer last april and it was so hard. i’m sorry for the heartache you’re going through. sending love and positive vibes your way from MA. <3


The Home Cook February 3, 2014 at 12:21 pm

Beautiful words, honey. I’m so sorry for your loss. They look like such sweethearts (and I love their names). My heart is breaking for you – to lose one and then the other so quickly. It’s never easy. Sending you love and hugs.


pam (Sidewalk Shoes) February 2, 2014 at 5:31 pm

I am so very sorry. I know that nothing I can say will make it better. It just hurts.


Velva February 2, 2014 at 2:48 pm

I am so sorry. Our furry companions are family and it is so very difficult to
say goodbye. My heart hurts for you.



Jude Heller February 2, 2014 at 10:45 am

Oh, Amy. What a beautiful tribute to Ginger and Ebi. I know they brought you great joy and you’ll relive those moments again and again! They’re probably in dog heaven together right now, hearing the answer to that age-old question “WHO’s a good girl???” With much love, Jude and Nick


Andee February 2, 2014 at 7:41 am

I am so incredibly sorry for your loss. In June of 2013, I had to put my dog to sleep. She wasn’t sick. She just couldn’t walk anymore. I have another dog that is still mourning her best friend and has never been right since.
I just wanted to send my heartfelt sympathies to you and your family and send hugs of strength at your time of need. I wish I had something profound to say to you…but I don’t. When we love anything with all of our heart, nothing is the same without them. Be well.


Joanne February 2, 2014 at 7:40 am

Oh Amy, I know nothing I can say will help but I was devastated when I saw this the other day. Sending you so much love.


Rachel Cooks February 2, 2014 at 6:19 am

What a beautiful tribute. So sorry for your loss. Hang in there, love. xo


Margaret UK February 2, 2014 at 2:43 am

I’m so very sorry to hear about your pets. It is heartbreaking when they go. The pictures are so beautiful.


Stephie @ EYHO February 1, 2014 at 10:26 pm

I read this this morning but had to wait until tonight to comment because it shook me so deeply. You ask if any of the details matter…yeah. They do. Because in those details are the love you had for your Ginger, and it was in those details that she felt your love. She knew she was loved, and cared for, and cherished. That’s the best thing you could have possibly done for her, or for Ebi. It’s the best thing we can possibly do for any of our babies.


Audra February 1, 2014 at 8:43 pm

I am so sorry to hear about the lost of your doggies. Lifting your family up in prayer. I do believe you will see them again, I have this same hope for my little furry one who passed in February 2006. I haven’t gotten another dog yet but one day I will.


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