Monthly Archives: April 2019

Passing Days at Blyss without Jelly

I will say life is unbearable here without Jelly.  I am acutely aware that this is all so deja vue.  I am taken back almost thirteen years to the death of Opal.  This is definitely familiar territory, and not terrain one would want to visit again any time soon.

But if I am devastated, Jelly’s darling dog walker is destroyed.  She stopped by today weeping, asking why I put her down when I did, and why I did not wait, saying she would have taken over the payment of the continued veterinary bills.  This would not have been feasible, given this woman’s financial situation.  Still, I know she would have done it……  there is no limit to the kindness of some people, and she is that kind of person.  And Jelly was the kind of dog that would bring it out in someone.  A man who accompanied her on her walks with Jelly with his dog was equally devastated and burst into uncontrollable sobs when he heard the news.  I decided to go to The Scouting Field in t he Watchung Reservations to be with them today, and joined them on a hike to the Deserted Village.  I had not done this in several years, probably not since I broke my shoulder walking Tresor three years ago.   Jelly loved this daily outing with them, and they told me of her many exploits out on the trail and all the fun she had.  I felt she was there with us, and not only Jelly but all the Blyss borzoi, especially Opal, whose image kept flashing before my eyes during this long and rather arduous venture for me.  For the longer I had Jelly, the more she melded into  Opal, and the more I felt that Opal  had returned, and that she had never left me.   I had had her with me all these years.  Recently, with this new found knowledge,  I  felt blissfully happy, happier than I had been in years.  Then, she was gone.  So now, I am grieving again for Opal, too.  I feel that every time I reached out and touched Jelly, I was touching something God-like, something beyond reality, and it transformed me into something beyond what I was, something greater, better, beyond anything I could ever be myself.  Because of them, Jelly and Opal, especially, but all the Blyss borzoi, I was a better person.  Their innate goodness made me good.  I bought this beautiful cottage eight years ago for my four borzoi.  Now they are all gone.   Now, I  am alone, and I will be alone forever.  It is as if they died, and I died with them.  My beautiful house has become a hollow tomb.

 

Jelly of Blyss Kennels, from Bibikov: An Obituary. 2010 – 2019

Jelly portrait by Maxine Bochnia

It is with the heaviest of hearts that I share the sad news of Jelly’s passing today. She fought a brave fight for one year with chylothorax, submitting to procedures multiple times. Always brave and stoic, she was a great actress for putting on a healthy face, as if to say, “See, Mommy, I’m just fine!”. But I saw her as she struggled to cross a small field to reach me, and turned away so not to embarass her for taking so long. I also saw her trying to stalk and hunt little animals but not be able to make the charge and pounce, and could only imagine what she must have thought….. I had always turned away by then so she would not know I knew she failed. We had perfect communication, without words, and I knew she was far worse than she seemed. The vet let me be with her when she passed. He had a beautiful red velvet blanket to give her to lie on. He took one last picture of us together on it. When she passed, she looked as if she were just resting there, looking very beautiful, with no sign of illness anywhere. She died with her splendid beauty intact. Jelly’s official portrait taken by Maxine Bochnia is shown below. I think it captures her unique beauty and grace to perfection. Somehow, feeling friendless and robbed, I must find a way to go on without her. Heaven has a brighter star for having Jelly in it. Dear God, please let me find it to guide me home.

 

The blur of passing days at Blyss

As one may imagine, the silence of my words although gravely remiss has been due to serious factors.  The primary reason is the acceptance of a full time rewarding position of employment in September.  I would never have believed that returning to the workforce would make such an enormous difference in my sense of well being, but it has.  I am a  Sales Associate at a very respected and prestigious department store with its flagship store on the  Upper East Side of NY City.  Every day I work there is a thrill.  Wherever my eye rest I see beautiful clothes the likes of which I never see anywhere else.  I have even had the pleasure and ability to significantly upgrade my own wardrobe thanks to the generous employee appreciation incentive discounts they offer.  I work with lovely people, both co-workers and customers.  I won’t say it is always easy and it is not exhausting at times for me, but overall I love it and would not return to being at home with tons of time on my hands mostly being spent alone as a widow.  I cannot  make a romantic connection of any kind with anyone.  I must admit I am grateful for the ongoing attention and  interest LT takes in my life and well being, even if he has moved on and is happy.  He says he is amazed that I am working so hard and is very happy to see me restored to  my former state of health and strength, a way that I was before he knew me, a way I had only described.  He had his doubts, but now, seeing it with his own eyes, he says he is very happy for my achievement over being weak, depressed and ill.  It is a change so significant it shocks even myself.

On another amazing note, it is not only myself who has made an amazing recovery to a state of former health and strength, but so, too, has Jelly.  This is the most amazing of phenomenon.   In May, she was diagnosed with chylothorax, a fatal canine disease.  I waited for her to pass all summer, but it was not to be.  She simply remained stable and then gradually grew

stronger.  My beloved Girl did not die after all and is still here with me.  It only proves what I believe in life, that we are all in God’s hands after all.  It does not really matter what a veterinarian says at the end of the day.  Destiny will run its course, and the life of a creature with it.  So, here, in the dark, cold month of December, I will not complain because it is very cold outside and I am exhausted for working all day, because I came home to find Jelly waiting for me, happy to see me, and to eat our dinner together, and wanting for nothing else.  Getting Jelly in 2015 caused me a great deal of expense and complications to my life but I would not ch ange a thing about them, becauase having her here has been worth everything because she makes me so happy.

The only dark spot on my horizon is the near one year anniversary of  Tresor’s death.  Jelly even played a positive role in his life, being here when he was returned to me, making his last years happier ones than they would have been had she not been here.  Borzoi need other borzoi.  Jelly is totally independent but Tresor was not.  Her presence bought him great comfort.  Only good has come from bringing Jelly into my life.  She is a good and sweet little borzoi in every way.  She brings infinite blessings to me every day she lives.

I know, many years ago, going on thirteen,  I lost a  much loved puppy bitch named Opal which brought me much grief.  I never thought I would feel another dog could be as close to me as she was or could ever hold her special qualities.  Today, many years later, and having lived with Jelly for some time, I have to say that Jelly has in many ways given those special and dear qualities that I lost when Opal died back to me.  It is really difficult to articulate this, because Opal truly was so special and dear, but Jelly  does so much to make me happy and is so good.  I owe her the credit of the complement that she is so like Opal, more than I could ever have imagined any other borzoi or dog could be.

                                                                                           Opal