Daphne by Susan Ford / Mom & Dan

I wanted to write and let you know about our “little sweetie heart,” as I called her (Daphne).

We lost her @ 6:15 a.m. on September 22, 1998. She didn’t meet me at the door when I came home on September 14,th and didn’t respond much when I located her on a rug in the hall. We took her to the doctor (the one on call). He gave her a steroid type shot as she was a bit wobbly in her back legs; an antibiotic shot, and four bottles of medicine to take home (cataracts in eyes, ear infection, more antibiotic and more anti-inflammatory drug).

After I came back from my conference on the 17th I decided she was considerably worse. Called Jim home from work and we took her back to her doctor. He took blood, said she needed to stay in hospital. Results showed her white cell count 31,000 and should not have been more than 18,000. They gave her IV’s and diuretics and kept her over the weekend. We visited her Friday and Saturday. When we went back Monday @ noon she was covered with dried diarrhea and wasn’t good. I was so upset over that. She perked up a little while we were there. She still was not eating (almost a week) and she was swelling now in her stomach.

Oh how I hated to leave her there. We just felt we had no choice. We decided to go back that evening and try to get her to eat. I’d boiled some chicken breast, hamburger and bought two meats in baby food, hoping she’d take one.

They had cleaned her up considerably when we’d gotten there. She was not doing well. I forced her to eat some of the baby food. We decided to take her home and did. This was September 21, 1998.

She cleaned her up a little more and tried to offer her food and water, which she refused. She couldn’t stand by now. Her little eyes were haunting. I made her a bed in a box beside my bed and we finally got in bed after 10:00 p.m. By 12:00 she was whining and barking intermittently. I tried to comfort her. She vomited three times and had diarrhea once, but never urinated once. Obviously her kidneys had shut down. I think she was in some pain and afraid. When I left the flashlight on, she quietened down. Jim got up @ 6:00 and carried her to the dining room. I’d been up most of the night and Jim had been up 2-3 times,
also cleaning up.

I heard her yell and then quiet. Jim came in the bedroom and said “ Daphne died.”It broke our hearts—just like your child! I’d prayed all night that if she couldn’t get well, to please not let her suffer anymore and take her on. I’m thankful she didn’t suffer anymore then she did.

Daphne was born January 20, 1984 and died September 22,, 1998. Why did she die? We can only speculate. Our feeling is the cancer had returned and obstructed her organs, maybe her kidneys. The IV’s caused her to swell, made her breathing difficult and caused her to have a heart attack.

If I had it to do over, I’d never have taken her to the doctor. She probably would have died easier and sooner, but we don’t get second chances. I’ll never forget how they mistreated her.

We really miss her, as do Heidi and Brady. There’s a real void at our house. She was such a wonderful lady all 14+ years.

Her casket read:

“Our Beloved Daphne Sleeping with Jesus”


Susan Ford