On March 18, 2015, We lost our sweet little girl, Parker. Parker was 8 years old when she left this world due to a large tumor in her gallbladder. I have written a post dedicated to Parker's memory which explains the events that led to her passing. I have also written a prayer dedicated to Miniature Schnauzers, which is one of the best breeds of dogs I think there is. Losing Parker was very unexpected and difficult for us, but like all things that we encounter in this life, we can find peace through God. God certainly comforted us during those last few days we had with Parker and He continues to comfort us as we adjust to life without her. I will be stitching a sampler in Parker's memory soon and I am also working on a series of children's books with Parker as the main character. When we lost Parker God told us that good would come from it. I have faith that that will happen and I know that everything happens for a reason and I know that PEACE MATTERS.
The following is the post that I wrote the morning after Parker's passing. This was a very difficult writing for me to do, but it also brought me much comfort. The tears flowed that morning as I wrote this, and I hope that it will show how much Parker meant to us.
On December 7th, 2006, Jeff and I welcomed home the first of what would turn out to be three miniature schnauzers. We named our new little bundle of joy, who was a little girl, Parker McKenzie. Parker was named for one of our favorite actresses, Sarah Jessica Parker. Parker’s middle name came from the movie Peyton Place. Parker was the sweetest girl from the minute we got her. She was our first introduction into pet ownership as adults, and she certainly taught us how to be good parents. Parker was easy to train and wanted to please us immediately. The lady who we bought Parker from told us that Schnauzers were a wonderful breed and that they look into our souls with their eyes. Parker definitely did that. Whenever Parker looked at us, it was as if she could see our souls and I believe she loved what she saw.
Parker’s personality made her very pliable to the changes that would occur in her lifetime. She accepted her younger brother and sister without question. She changed houses with us, and she wore fancy clothes when we asked her to. All she ever wanted to do was be with us, love us, be loved, and have a few treats. She never asked for more. Parker was the perfect example of unconditional love, acceptance, patience, and unselfishness.
On March 14th, 2015, Parker woke up and was sick. We immediately took her to the doctor and soon discovered that she had a large tumor in her gallbladder. The doctor told us that she might have had the tumor for a year or more. We had no idea that she had ever been sick. She never complained or acted like she felt bad. The doctor told us to take Parker home and love her and appreciate every day we had with her. She told us that she may not have any more issues for quite some time or she could have issues in as little as a week.
We brought Parker home from the hospital on March 16th. She was so happy to be home and seemed fine. However, on March 18th, Jeff and I returned from school to find Parker not feeling well at all. She was very sick and very scared. We knew that her time was drawing to an end. We prayed for Parker, and God told us it was time to let her go. He told us that He was prepared to take care of her for us. I cannot adequately tell you how the next three hours went. We were terribly upset, but we knew we had to do right by Parker. She had given us so much over the years. We had to be brave and be there for her in her final hours.
When we arrived at the Doctor’s office Parker seemed fine. She was sick and we knew it, but we were hopeful. I was so concerned that we were not doing the right thing, and we kept praying for her. God continually reassured us that we were doing the right thing. I eventually needed proof. Not long before the doctor came in, I was ready to grab Parker and take her home. I was so scared that we were doing the wrong thing. She was very thirsty, so I put some water in my hand and let her drink. She immediately got sick, but this time it was blood. I knew then that we were doing the right thing. Even in her final hour, Parker was taking care of us and showing us what she needed. As I said before, Parker was the perfect example of unselfishness, and we had to show that same unselfishness to her.
The doctor came in and told us that if Parker were her dog, she would let her go. The next 30 minutes were like something out of dream. We held Parker and told her how much we loved her and how wonderful she had been. We told her that she was going to go to sleep and when she woke up her Daddies would be with her. I am a firm believer that dogs go to Heaven. I know there is a lot of debate about that, but I am sure that our dogs will be there. How could it be Heaven without them? It makes sense to me that something so special to us on earth will be with us in Heaven.
When they gave Parker the medicine to take her out of this world, Jeff and I stood around her and held on to her. Jeff, who was Parker’s favorite human, knelt down next to her and looked her straight in the eyes. He wanted her to be able to see him the entire time. I cannot tell you how peaceful the whole experience was. Parker just faded out of this world. There was no struggle; there was no tremble, just peace. God was certainly with Jeff and me that day, and He gave us the courage, strength, and peace to do what we had to do. I believe we did Parker proud that day. I think she would have been very pleased with the way that we turned out as far as parents go.
As we were leaving the doctor’s office, I was reminded of a Dr. Seuss quote. It says, “Don’t cry because it is over; smile because it happened.” I thought how fitting that was. How could we cry for too long? Parker had blessed our lives with so much joy, peace, and comfort, which was what she was all about. We had her for almost 9 years, and she never gave us one day of trouble and she was never even sick except in the end. I truly know that God was in that room with us as we said good-bye to Parker. I felt Him and His gentle words. He was literally holding me up, and He was ready to receive Parker for us.
Parker was a gift, but she was a gift that we were not meant to have forever. God gave us the strength and the ability to accept the situation. You see, God never leaves us. He never turns his back on us. He is there for us all the time whispering peace into our ears, and He heals our hearts and gives us the ability to accept things. God has a plan for all of us. Sometimes the path we travel is bumpy, but He guides us down the path and gives us the strength to keep going. All we have to do is trust Him, hold His hand, and walk in faith. I have seen Him work in my life too many times not to believe that. Keep going and never give up. God is always with us. He will get us through what seems to be the worst day or most impossible problem and He will bring peace into any situation that we encounter and PEACE MATTERS.
If you currently own a dog, love it with all your heart; if you do not own a dog consider adopting one. That sweet creature will bring more love, joy, and peace into your life than you could ever imagine. If you cannot own a dog, consider volunteering or donating money to your local animal shelter. It will make a difference for you and the dogs.
In loving memory of
Parker McKenzie Weaver-White
A true companion and a peaceful little lady
The following is the prayer that I wrote to honor Parker and other Miniature Schnauzers that grace this earth and our lives.
~Dear Heavenly Father~
Bless my Miniature Schnauzer. Bless her with a long, healthy life full of joy and peace. Bless her with a life of playful years and warm sunny days. Bless her with a life with plenty of love, belly rubs, long walks, and yummy treats. Help me to remember what a precious gift it is to be entrusted with the purest of all souls that you have placed on this earth. Help me to be patient and kind to her. Help me to see the world and myself through her eyes. Help me to take the time to enjoy her presence in my life and help me to love her as much as she loves me. Bless my Miniature Schnauzer when we are apart. Calm her fears and help her realize that I am coming back very soon. Help me to be just as excited to see her, as she is to see me, and let each of our greetings be the highlight of both of our days. Help me to love my Miniature Schnauzer as unselfishly and unconditionally as she loves me and give me the grace and dignity to always do right by her. Help me realize that life is about love and realize that loving my Miniature Schnauzer will come back to me in more ways than is humanly possible for me to understand. When the time comes, give me the strength to let her go and help me to comfort her as she takes her last earthly breath. Accept her into Heaven, dear Lord, and take care of her for me until we are once again joyously reunited, never to part again. Help me to focus on the joy that she brought into my life, and give me the courage to love another. Help me realize that is what she would want me to do because she has always known that the most precious gift that any of us can give is love.
Dedicated in loving memory of
Parker McKenzie Weaver-White