Baci Forever

Wednesday was quite possibly the worst day of our lives.  We lost our best friend, our buddy, our sweet boy, and our heart.  On Sunday Baci had a seizure and we took him to emergency.  We stayed with him all night Sunday, all day Monday, on Tuesday he was by himself for 4 hours.  Things seemed to be getting better. Wednesday morning he had another seizure and we took him to the vet where he had his 3rd seizure.  We rushed to emergency again and after an MRI it was confirmed that he had a mass in his brain that was not operable.  We had to let him go, it was the saddest most horrific thing ever.  Hearing him take his last breath was  . . . there are no words.  That last image is permanently embedded in our minds.  Baci never slowed down he was always a puppy, jumping like a jumping bean and running still at almost 10 years old, and all that was taken away in 3 days.  That’s why it hurts so bad.

For those of you who know us personally, you know how much that dog meant to us.  Our lives revolved around him.  The connection my husband had with him was like no other, they were in tune with each other and always together. In those 10 years there were only two times that they were apart over night, once in 08 when Vince went to Florida with me and on our wedding night in 09.  And both times Vince was a worried mess, and Baci was sick for 3 days during that Florida trip. They had an unexplainable bond.  There were nights where I would wakeup in the middle of the night to find Vince curled up with Baci on the floor.  Or I would come home and catch them spooning on the couch.

Baci wasn’t just a dog or a pet he was our baby.  And we both treated him like a person, talking to him constantly and looking forward to seeing his face at the door when we came home.  He made everything ok.

I remember when we got him, Vince wanted to name him “Nero” but because I couldn’t pronounce it properly (this Polish girl can’t roll her “R’s”) we settled on “Baci”.  Baci means “kiss” in Italian.  The name was perfect!!! All we ever did was kiss that sweet face and he us.  Sometimes we called him “Bachinski” for his Polish roots, he liked being multi cultural.  Baci was really special, his favorite thing in the world was to find a puddle and lay in it.  It was like slow motion, when we were out, and there was a puddle (no matter how big or small) we would both run to try and stop him from laying down in it, it was awesome!  He loved riding in the car with his head out the window as well. He loved butter just like his mom, yes you heard that right, if he heard me open the container in the fridge where it is kept he would come trotting into the kitchen. Of course being a Lab he loved to swim any chance he could.  Last summer we took him to a private lake where he got to swim to his heart content.  We had a kiddie pool for him in the back yard as well.  In the winter he liked making snow angels in the snow.  In the fall he rolled around in the leaves.  He loved going to the park especially Schnee in Cuyahoga Falls, he would chase his stick there and even swim in the small creek sometimes.  We were so happy that we recently moved to a neighborhood where we could walk him on the sidewalks, it was a stupid small thing, but it meant so much.  Finally we could just walk out our front door anytime with him and not have to drive somewhere, and he LOVED going on these walks.  He loved sleeping in the “big bed” with us, stretched out straight in the middle like a person.  His other favorite thing, at least I’d like to think so, was to pose for me.  He was the BEST model any photographer could ask for and a reason why I love photography so much.  From the day we brought him home, I was taking his picture.  He loved the camera, and if I said “Baci . . . dooooo youuuu?”, he would turn his little head like he was listening and hoping that I would say “go to the park”.  It was the cutest thing ever.  I have more pictures of that sweet face than most people have of their kids.  And still I feel like there were sooooo many more to take.  I dressed that guy in the craziest outfits and took his pictures for our Christmas card each year.  He was a hippy, a ladybug, an angel, santa, superman, a runner, a reindeer, an elf, he was even a groom and last year he was a photographer.  I will never forget the day I took that photographer image, I swear my neighbors were looking out their window and thinking I was nuts.  He was running around the deck with an old camera around his neck and a hat as I was bribing him with treats.  He looks so handsome in that shot, we have a large print of it hanging in my office.  I love it!

I’m certain that he knew how much he was loved from the first day to the last.   It would have been impossible to give him any more love than we gave.  Aunt Deb said on facebook “he quite possibly was the most loved dog on the planet” there’s no “quite possibly” about it, he WAS.

I’m writing this post to help us cope in this tragic time.  It all happened so fast without any warning and now we’re sitting at home looking at each other lost, it sucks, it really really sucks.  I want us to remember all the great times we had together.  All the running, the playing, the jumping!  I’m happy that I have these pictures to remember my handsome boy by forever and I’m surrounded by things that remind me of him daily.  There are pictures of him in every room in our house and he will always be close by in our hearts.

In closing, take lots of pictures of those you love, print them, display them, protect them and cherish them.  In the end that’s all we have!  As stupid as it might sound I find great comfort at looking at the pictures and remembering all the fun times.

Baci buddy, we will never forget you and will ALWAYS love you!  Sweet dreams my love!

and this is the last image I took of him last Sunday about an hour before his first seizure, oh how I miss that perfect nose!!!

Facebook comments:

Tabitha Smith: My heart is aching for you. Our pup Tango is 11 and I dread the day that he leaves us. I am SOOOO sorry that you've had to say good-bye to Baci, I read the first couple of lines and my stomach sank and my eyes welled with tears and I've never even met you or Baci but we treat our dogs like you & your husband treated Baci. Thank you for sharing this because most people who have dogs have such a special connection with them and either have gone through this or will go through it. I'm going to snuggle with Tango & Charlie now and cherish every moment.
Heather Mantifel: Oh My gosh. I am balling after reading this article. As far as I am concerned if you don't love your animals like humans you shouldn't be a pet owner. They are family and for some reason, unexplainable, they are sometimes harder to say goodbye too. Our pets are the one true unconditional love. No matter what they are there for us. They love us, they protect us, and they think the world of us. The most amazing thing is that they never speak a word to tell us. But we know, more than anything else, how much they love us. My heart is so heavy for your loss and the photos are so beautiful. There are no words to make you feel better, but I can say that I understand where you are at and I'm sorry that it hurts so bad. Its a pain that I wish I could take away from anyone. When you love something so very much they become a piece of you and it is so hard to learn how to adapt to that loss of yourself. My heart is with you at this time. You were so blessed to have such a friend!!!!
terra: Margaret, I'm so sorry for your loss. These furry kiddos of ours are so precious and fragile. We're coming up on 1 year since losing Voogaman and sadly, the feeling of loss doesn't go away. It still feels like yesterday. I'm so glad Baci had you in his life. I'm sure he felt so special when you dressed him up and even gave him a camera! Thank you for sharing this. My heart goes out to you.
Kalyn: Margaret - this was a beautiful eulogy of Baci's life. Adam and I know how much he meant to you and Vince and how truly loved he was. We always looked forward to the Christmas cards every year. I can't imagine the pain of losing such a loved member of the family, but know he is resting peacefully and will always be remembered. xoxo
Pam I Am: Margaret & Vince....I can't even tell you how sad I am for you. Breaks my heart........I remember when he was a puppy; it was about the same time I got my Chocolate Lab Riley; whom I miss terribly. I have to say though...I still have him around and so will you because for decades you'll find his hair in your hat boxes, your Christmas decorations, your books...and it goes on and on. When you discover it, you'll smile. Baci knew he was loved and that's the best gift in the world, to know love like that; unconditionally. Those sweet pooches never get mad at you and they're always so happy to see you, so happy as a matter of fact they're known for knocking things off tables with one wag of a tail. I'm so, so sorry. You lost your love. Hopefully he's running with Riley and rolling in puddles. I love you little lady.
Pam I Am: One little sidebar. They say pets are a trial run for children, it shows what kind of parent you'll be. You're going to be AMAZING parents with lots and lots of love and lots and lots of photos, I can't wait!! xox
Melissa Brown: I am so very sad for you and Vince. Sending you love...xo
Juniper Sage: This made me cry, so touching and yet so sweet. My heart goes out to you two.
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