Mourning Coffee, by Tracy Renee Lee

Our family suffered two deaths this week. One was my husband’s mother, the other was our beloved schnauzer of 16 years, Lady Bug. 

My husband’s mother died Sunday morning and the next morning, my husband left for Savanah Georgia. He drove our van because he transported her casket with him. 

Wednesday morning Lady Bug woke up not feeling very well. After about two hours, I knew something was desperately wrong. I wrapped her in a purple beach towel and drove to the veterinary clinic in Texarkana TX. 

The veterinarian was concerned with Lady’s symptoms, so she ordered x-rays. Through her evaluation, she determined that Lady Bug was suffering from congestive heart failure.  An i.v. was placed in Lady Bug’s front right leg and she was placed in an oxygen tent. Sadly, she needed to stay the night in the pet hospital. 

The next morning I drove back to the veterinary clinic to check on our little Lady Bug. She was refusing food and not doing as well as we had hoped. I spent a few hours with her, but the veterinarian said that she needed rest, so I had to leave her over-night again at the animal hospital.

Friday morning, I drove to the pet hospital again.  Lady was still in distress, so I face-timed my daughter, Heather, to see if she could tempt Lady into eating.  She coaxed and coaxed her sweet pet, but Lady would not be tempted.  Instead, Lady reached for the phone and placed her sweet little paw on the glass to express her love and devotion to her dearest friend.  This innocent gesture of love, from pet to master, caused tears to stream down my cheeks, Heather’s cheeks, and Lady Bug’s cheeks.  

The vet wanted Lady Bug to stay a few more hours and for me to return after work with a selection of treats to tempt her into eating. I went back to work and as soon as I could, I returned to Texarkana to see if Lady Bug would eat her favorite treats. 

At that time, Lady seemed to be doing much better.  She was very happy to see me.  She came forward in the oxygen tent and placed her front paws around my neck and laid her chin on my shoulder.  She gave me a sweet hug and looking directly into my soul, Lady Bug’s beautiful dark eyes expressed fear and yearning.  She didn’t want to let go. I didn’t want to leave her.  We were only allotted five minutes because the hospital was closing to visitors.  

The vet expressed confidence that Lady would recover, however, as she would not eat, she needed to stay another night at the hospital. I kissed Lady Bug good night and sadly, returned home without her.

My husband returned home late that evening. He was very anxious to see Lady Bug, so the following morning, he drove to Texarkana while I went to direct a funeral. When he arrived, Lady Bug was not doing well at all. She was so happy to see him, but she could not muster the energy to do anything but lay her head on his arm. Twenty minutes later, Lady fell into peaceful rest, nestled in the arms of a man writhing in grief.

Our family is heartbroken. We had Lady Bug with us for 16 years. She survived numerous surgeries and stage 4 breast cancer. She was the dearest pet and loved us all so much. 

Our youngest daughter, Heather, and Lady were companions; they were best friends. Heather is so sad. She is away at college, and losing her Lady Bug has been very stressful and heart wrenching for her. Losing Lady has affected all of us with deep emotional pain.

Grief is grief no matter who has died. The loss of a pet is no less significant than any other loss. Your level of attachment and love for your pet, will determine your level of grief. Our family is mourning the death of two loved ones this week and will continue our bereavement for quite some time.

We have another pet. Her name is Butter.  Butter is a toy poodle. Butter and Lady Bug were playmates. Butter does not understand where Lady Bug has gone. She is lonely and sad. Since Lady’s death, Butter has stopped eating.  

Butter will help us recover from our loss of Lady Bug, but we must help her as well. It is our obligation to assist her to overcome the grief that she does not understand, but that has begun to grip her heart. She will require additional love and attention to replace the love and companionship that she has lost with Lady’s death. She is a sweet puppy and will bring us great comfort as we journey through our loss together.

Lady Bug Lee
January 2004 – January 2020
Miniature Schnauzer

Lady Bug Lee, born January 14, 2004, in Ogden UT, passed from this life Saturday, January 25, 2020, after a brief hospital stay at Wisdom Veterinary Clinic, in Texarkana TX. She was 16 years old.

Lady is survived by her lifelong companion and best friend, Heather Lee of Rexburg ID, G. Michael and Tracy Lee of Queen City TX, and Holly Lee Arnot of Ewa Beach HI.

Lady was purchased as a childhood companion for Heather Lee at a pet store in Ogden Utah as the Lee family embarked on new adventures and new careers. She traveled across the United States touring various states and historical sites. Through it all, Lady was kindly tempered, loving and attentive to Heather and friendly to others. Lady was well mannered. She always had a protective eye out for Heather and she always acted with dignity.

Lady was perfection.

Lady will be cremated under the direction of Wisdom Animal Clinic of Texarkana TX.

The Lee family would like to thank Dr. Parris, DVM of Wisdom Animal Clinic for the caring environment in which Lady spent her final days. We also appreciate the allowances made to our family to be afforded time with Lady as we said goodbye to our dearly loved family member.

Beloved pets are with us but for a short time, however; their love and influence motivate our hearts and change our world to one that is more tenderly receptive and accepting of others.

Lady Bug Lee
Loved and Remembered Everyday

My name is Tracy Renee Lee. I am a Certified Grief Counselor (GC-C), Funeral Director (FDIC), published author, syndicated columnist, and co-founder of the “Mikey Joe Children’s Memorial” and Heaven Sent, Corp. I write books, weekly bereavement articles, and Grief BRIEFs related to understanding and coping with grief. I am the American Funeral Director of the Year Runner-Up and recipient of the BBB’s Integrity Award. 

It is my life’s work to comfort the bereaved and help them live on, as well as educate adults in the needs of surviving children.
For additional

encouragement, read other articles or watch video “Grief Briefs,” please go to my website at

Please follow me on Instagram at “PushingUpDaisies_TracyLee”.

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