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

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Majestic Diary

August 4, 2008

Glory has taken a turn for the worse. As of yesterday her legs no longer move at all… she can’t even swim, which she was doing the day before.  She is not an indoor duck, she does not like being held and she can’t use a cart with legs that don’t work at all.  When I’m inside I know the fire that burns in her—she is so fierce and determined, but when I go outside and look at her, I see… I see… The disappointment growing in her eyes as she realizes that her determination is no longer enough and she is helpless.

I just can’t have her sitting and watching everyone else doing their duck things while she has to sit in the same place until I can move her—and when I’m working, it won’t be possible anymore. When I do move her I can see that she is uncomfortable in her nests that I make for her. She works hard to position herself comfortably, but I can see in her eyes that she is not. I can see she is broken hearted. I see her spirit longing to walk and swim, and I see her heart breaking because she cannot forage and play with the others.

Miri does not sit with her continually anymore, where she always used to. She is trying to make alliances with Deirdre, Jezebel and Vida. I see this as a sign as well--that her best friend is preparing, and they often understand these things better than we do.

Last night, Isabel and I talked about whether it would be best for Glory to stay here, watching all her friends have fun while she can never join them again, or whether to send her to the spirit world where she will be able to walk and swim again.  I gave Isabel all the time she needed to decide.  Of course, she is not really making the decision so much as understanding it by arriving there for herself. She was worried Glory might be lonely on the other side, but I told her Daphnee, Destiny, Joven, Fiona and Qwaka would all be there to welcome her. That made her feel better and in the end, she came to the same conclusion. And then we brought Daddy into the meeting and we all agreed it is the right thing to do, before her health declines any further... to end her discomfort before it turns into pain and suffering.

So this morning Glory is with Miri in their own little grassy pen, so they can be together right up until the end. I will call the vet within the hour and see if we can come in today.  And I will stay with her while she passes, so she knows she is not alone.  I will have her cremated and brought back to us.

But first, I signed the paperwork. She is officially adopted and retired by Majestic. We are the loving family we always searched to find for her. She will leave this world having found her new home, and it was here all along.


Glory and I arrived at the vet and we sat outside in the grass. Her legs were paralyzed, even worse than yesterday. I even suspect that the entire lower half of her body was paralyzed by the way she was acting. She was just getting worse every day. And although she was vibrant in the morning, by afternoon she was drained and broken hearted. I thought I should honor her by taking her in while she was vibrant and proud, so everyone would remember her for her strong spirit. From the head up she had the spirit of 2 ducks, but her broken body was not even enough for one.

And then I saw the photo frame on the wall... a gift we had given to the vet years ago with pictures of the ducks he had first helped for us. And among them, front and center, was Fiona. I turned to Glory and told her: She's knows and she's going to be there waiting for you. 

The vet gave her the injection and she didn't seem to feel it. They left me alone with her, and I held her so close, her head in my hands. I kissed her and made promises to her and asked to see her again some day, her body whole again. And I asked for her forgiveness and I apologized to her for what others had done to her before she came to us. I told her that we didn't really give her anything compared to what she gave us. It was so wonderful knowing her and seeing the ferocity in her eyes. Her sheer will power.

And then she began to blink and nod off. She lifted her head and shook off the drowsiness and then slowly lowered her head into my hands. Her spirit hanging on as long as she could. Looking into her eyes. She was always a fighter, right up until the end. I will never forget her... not as long as I live...


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