And in the End


And in the end

the love you take

is equal to the love you make


The Hooker Horde celebrated snow and Princess’ tenth birthday. Our Berner Bunch of Buddies cheered for us.

Somehow, Princess overcame the odds. Even our pet communicator said, “I don’t know how you did it, but she loves them and they love her. She loves you, too. She’s not going anyplace.”


Our home was covered with yoga mats. Both Faith and Princess needed the extra grip to get up and down.

On February 8th, just as I left for school, Faith’s legs gave out. I helped her settle.

When I came home, she could not walk.

We loaded up in the Element and went straight to Dr. Prior.


Princess and I puttered around the waiting area. When we walked into the big room, Dr. Prior had tears in his eyes when he explained, “She ruptured her ACL.”

Sitting on the floor, Faith rested her head in my lap, looked at me with her pretty brown eyes, and told me, “Momma, I’m done. I can’t do it anymore.”

Knowing the history with Faith’s breathing and elongated soft palate, she was not a candidate for surgery at 8-1/2 years-old.

Dr. Prior, knowing the history with my “Berner Peeps,” offered to let me take her home.

Faith said, “no.”

The next day, after I lost my Kaibab family for the choice I made, I was given flowers and a note that “Faith lives.”

And, she does.

Faith lives.

Then, on February 24th, the cancer came back.

I poured myself a glass of liquid courage and Princess helped herself.

Big tears were cried with Dr. Prior when we said “goodbye.”


Our friends sent this beautiful portrait of our girl.


The Little Prince came home on St. Patrick’s Day.

Ten days later, he did not feel very well.


Turns out, the baby had a liver shunt.


He made me brave.

We traveled to Fort Collins. We even took his Princess from Auntie Barbz.


But, my Little Prince couldn’t make it.

He said “goodbye” and took our hearts.


We celebrated Mother’s Day.

My girls and I picked up Honey.




This ended my first year at Park City High School.


Diesel arrived.

He fit right into the Hooker Horde. Diesel was Princess’ boyfriend. He slept on her bed and loved her furry siblings. He even loved the puppy.

We took “The Little Prince” to see “Prince.”

All of our hearts broke again.


Betty White was tired. Her knee was displaced. Dementia was difficult; it isolated her from the pack.

With a growl and snap, Betty left.

September 9th

With BW leaving, there was room for Hef (short for Hefner and Hefty).

He flew in from Houston on my birthday.


Diesel was so proud of himself. He snuck off and jumped in the pond.


A few days later, Dr. Keri, Christie, and Dr. Prior and I wept.

My boy, Princess’ buddy, was filled with cancer.

October 28th

Heidey Hooker arrived from Missouri.


December 30th, 2017


In the end,

the love you take

is equal to the love you make.

We made a lot of love in 2017.

2017, you kicked my ass.

2017, you broke my heart.

2017, you gave me the Liver Shunt Society; new Berner friends and family; and, you made me brave.

2018, BRING IT.

About Julie Hooker

I'm a teacher, writer, and editor. In addition, I'm an animal rescuer, yogi, and friend.
This entry was posted in Dogs, Emotional Support Animals, For the Love of Dogs, gratitude, home and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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