Rescue Journal

life is sucking again

Carol  ·  Feb. 19, 2008

i can feel the panic rising... too many deaths again, too soon. i don't know what i expect when i deal with furry ticking time bombs. i think i know with my head as i dispense their medications and ferry them around to the vets that they are all sick and old and frail and not with us for very long.

but then i have this disconnect thing..that breaks the link from my brain to my heart. i love the little bastards exactly as they are. so...they seem almost normal to me, and normal doesn't just up and die. they hang around forever, like dexter and bill and sweet pea, i just keep expecting them to be here despite everything.

there are those who say i killed swinger, and today after weeks of guilt, i figured it out. i didn't kill him, i kept him alive and well and happy for a year and a half longer than anyone else would.

i don't kill any of them, their age and diseases do and that was the other thing i realized....i am never, ever going to win at this. one loss at a time, sometimes 3 in 4 days. they are all going to die on me because that is why they are here.

i will tell you quite frankly, the whole god damn thing sucks.



For those that say Swinger was killed , I know Carol did not kill Swinger, there was none of the toxic to horses stuff in the feed he got into ( chicken scratch vs Chicken feed used at poultry farms ) , I was there as soon as Carol called after finding him loose in the barn , there was still a lot of the feed all over the floor of the barn, so Carol must have found him very soon after he managed to undue 2 clips & the bolt on his stall door before letting himself out.. cause he didn't really get at that much. It was Swingers time & Carol is so correct in that she gave him, probably the best year & a half , of his entire life.

I knew Swinger 15 years ago & I can tell you SAINTS was a wonderful gift to him, his life prior to that was full of hard times & unforgiving humans . Carol I hope you truly have let go of any guilt you have, Swinger loved you & he loved being loved at SAINTS.


Carol, I'm so happy to hear you have accepted that Swingers death was not your fault. I know lots of us could have told you that right from the start, but until you accepted it you would not believe it. You save so many animals lives just by taking them in and giving them a home.


The people who said you killed Swinger have no idea about the realities of running a sanctuary, holding the responsibility of the lives of dozens of special needs animals in your all-too-human hands. The only people whose opinions should matter to you are those who understand giving their lives over to rescue. There are precious few who can lay claim to that.
You did not kill Swinger. Those who throw stones should watch out for the shards of glass that might come raining down on their heads.

Eva Stock


I am so glad you have come to the right terms with the loss of your sweet little , big brat, butt biting Swinger as I know he loved you and appreciated you all the time he was here. You voice cooled his brain and relaxed him when he was stressed, I was there the ist night he was down in the stall. He loved living at Saints. Eva.


I was listening to John O'Donahue, a Catholic ex-priest on CBC's Tapestry a couple of weeks ago.

He had a number of lovely, soul-quenching, spirit-easing things to say, and quite a few lovely things to say about death. Among other things, he believes that the spirits of our loved ones are close by to help us when we are in need.

It was a replay interview, because John O'Donahue himself passed away suddenly that week. What a warm, soft, honest, lovely man.

Have a listen: it will be a balm on your poor scraped soul, I promise. And maybe you'll feel closer to all your beloved friends who are departed.


I am in tears. So much loss in such a short time - it just doesn't seem fair - but I thank God that you are here and doing such a wonderful thing.

As a volunteer in Pahrump who knew the Americats I promise that they are forever grateful for you and for SAINTS. Because of you - because of SAINTS - they know heaven on earth. They went from a concentration camp and certain death from starvation to warmth, love, companionship, and being spoiled. Without you they may never have known such things.

SAINTS seems to be both the best and the worst type of work. Saying goodbye is always tough. We may not always have time to grieve as much as we should, but those that have gone on ahead to the Rainbow Bridge will never be forgotten. Thank you for giving all of yourself to the residents of SAINTS - I hate to think of what kind of life they would have were it not for you.


Accepting their deaths just because they are old, or just because they are FeLV+, or just because they are riddled with bleeding tumours, or just because it truly is simply their time is hard. No matter how much our head's know it... no matter now many amazing creatures we have cradled as they leave us, it doesnt get easier. I dont think it is supposed to.

The challenge (as I see it anyways) is that while last-chance Rescuers see significantly more than their fair share of death, they are not granted their fair share of time to grieve. Because there are another zillion animals right at their feet that need them right that very minute, or the To Do List is looming, or the Waiting List of animals needing the spot of the friend you just said Goodbye to is never-ending.

And so you find a way to carry on, even when you dont feel like it and even when all you want to do is sit and sob.

And then the guilt of "carrying on" kicks in... how can you possibly allow yourself a smile over some silly thing that one of the others did when just days or hours ago you had to say Goodbye to someone else?

It's just not natural. But I am sure glad you do it.