Majestic Waterfowl Sanctuary, 17 Barker Road, Lebanon, CT, 06249

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Majestic Diary

February 5, 2012

I had a horrible nightmare last night... I remember trying to squeeze my hand onto Tony's leg to wake him up and insisting that something was in the room--walking around the bed and buzzing like flies. I was really scared and made him turn on the lights and when he went downstairs for a bit, I barely remember telling him to keep the light on... keep the light on...

Today was strange... empty... It's always so hard losing one of our animals. Many of them need specialized care and TLC in their final days during which time I grow even MORE attached to them. I get so used to that close interaction, hour after hour... Young Matthew's medical regime required me to split up my day into three hour increments. I had to time everything out perfectly and I didn't mind doing it one bit. But now that that strict regime isn't there anymore, everything feels so unstructured... it makes it that much harder to work my way through the grief of his loss.

So many well-wishes have come through and so many donations. I only wish we could have saved Young Matthew and even though I did everything I could, I still have these moments where I try to figure out what more I could have done. If only we had done a fecal culture earlier on. If only I hadn't taken him off of the probiotics as our vet suggested--that's when his health immediately deteriorated... even though I started him back on them a day and a half later when I realized his health was getting worse, it was already too late.

We had two vets consulting with a third on Young Matthew's care and still it wasn't enough. How could this be? How could we have all missed the symptoms of a bacterial infection? How could his testosterone poisoning blinded us from seeing that something else--something bigger was going on behind the scenes. I feel like I've let him down. He could still be with me today if only I had figured the puzzle out sooner. It's so overwhelming...

Even though the bacteria is just normal stuff found in nature that he succumbed to only because of his old age and weakened immunity, we decided to start breaking open the ice of all eight small ponds and muck them out--fencing off those that aren't done yet. Then we drained and refilled the Courtyard pond twice to ensure a good rotation of stream water.

After this, we spread fresh sand through all of the pens, cleaned the barn, disinfected the duck and goose houses, water buckets and food dishes--even though this is part of our normal routine anyway and it was all recently done... we did it all again... so Momma duck can sleep at night knowing that everyone is safe and sound.

...

I thought of something today...

I had to look back through the diary pages to find it. I wrote about it on December 1st. I had called Jenn in November and told her I had a terrible premonition that I was going to lose one of our beloved animals. I was really worried that it was going to be Young Jeffrey or Young Matthew, but then when Lilly died so unexpectedly, I figured that was what I had been sensing. Now I know I was wrong. I hadn't been sensing Lilly's departure--it was Young Matthew all along... I was right to be worried and I'm so glad I spent the last few months getting all those extra hugs and kisses every night--not missing out on a single moment with them.

 

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