Since I changed my Facebook status to engaged, I’ve had a few ads for articles and relationship sites that talk about how you know someone’s the one. I’m not sure there is such a thing, but in honour of Valentine’s Day, I will tell you the story of how I knew my beloved is a keeper. It all starts with my bunny bestie Toffie. [WARNING: pet death]
Toffie and why her opinion matters
Toffie was my first pet rabbit. She came into my life after I was told I couldn’t donate blood, but that’s another story and will be told another time. Toffie only really loved one person, me! My mom was okay if I wasn’t around. Toffie-rabbit slept on my bed and woke me up by jumping over my head. She sat with me when I worked through nights. We were BFFs.
In all her time with us, she only really took to two visitors. One was one of my mom’s best friends. The other was Hardus. The first time they met she grabbed onto his boot and hung on.
She was sometimes jealous and boxed him when I gave him attention, but it was clear she approved. And pets can have a good sense of who a person is. And as my bunny bestie, her opinion was important.
Love and death
Toffie lived to the age of nine. As she became older, her stomach wasn’t always happy. Despite vet visits, stomach massages and the occasional bum wash to loosen stool, it became clear that while we could treat her, we couldn’t cure her. Then the day I’d been dreading came. I waited a day longer than I should have to make sure it was time.
The last day
The last morning I first called my new job to tell them I was taking the day off. Next, I called the vet for an appointment. He could fit us in the afternoon.
I was distraught. I WhatsApped my boyfriend to tell him about my poor little lady. He knew about her health issues and had helped me do the rabbit admin like cutting nails and washing her dirty bottom. He’d been great through the whole thing, but that day he became my special human.
My love was there when I needed him
I’m still not sure how he got away from work to be there with me and my mom before the vet appointment that afternoon. He has a story, but “training ended early” sounds a tad suspicious.
Thanks to Hardus, I have photos of me and Toffie enjoying the garden the afternoon. Thanks to my fiancé, now almost husband, I have sweet last memories of my bunny bestie stretching in the sun.
Hardus wasn’t intrusive. I didn’t have to comfort him because I was sad. He came so I could focus on saying goodbye to one of my best friends. He came to be with me, and drive my mom, me and the sweet bunbun to the vet later that day.
My vet is a lovely person. He’s helped us take care of our pets and he’s been with us for the sad goodbyes. He helped me make the final decision to let Toffie hop over the rainbow bridge. I tried to cry like a lady and stay calm for Toffie’s sake. I knew I’d done the right thing when I felt her relax in my arms and she gave a soft, sweet bunny yawn.
And then in the room only love remained. And tears. It’s a dear and bittersweet memory.
Speaking of sweet
My mom tells me that she decided that day that I should marry Hardus. At the time I only knew that I had support and love from my mom, a fantastic boyfriend and a kind-hearted vet. And I’m pretty sure Toffie’s love still remains.
That was almost three years ago. While I’m marrying Hardus this year, I still haven’t used my camera again or downloaded the photos of that last day from my camera.