Larissa
It's been three weeks since loosing my Easter. I think I'm ready to tell you his story. Thankfully I'm fortunate to have found this group of nonjudgmental understanding folks. Our story is unusual,none the less I loved him with all I have. (((deep breath))) here goes.....

First off for those who don't know ,Easter was a chicken. I had an incubator set up in my basement and he hatched Easter morning. Right then and there something was just different about him. For about a week or so,I'd go down to check on the chicks and Easter demanded attention. He loved to be held. At a week old one of the other chicks ran him over and he slipped a tendon in his leg. I tried numerous times and popped it back in place but it just wouldn't stay. Slipped tendons are a death sentence for birds. My husband wanted me to put him down but I just couldn't. It's nearly impossible for a bird to survive with one leg. I convinced the vet to see him,she determined there was no fracture but couldn't do any better for the tendon than I could. So home I went,and I just couldn't let him go. He started out with a leg brace, and had a basket designed to let him be upright and sleep,and let his leg heal. As time went on he had a brace and a shoe. As he grew his leg twisted and deformed his foot. He did well with one leg for a while but as he grew the good leg started to fail. He could propel himself with the good leg,just had no control of direction. So he lived in the house at night and went out with me in the day. My little side kick. Eventually he got a wheel chair. He sat in it for so long with no movement. The day he realized he could move,boy the wheels never stopped moving. He could zoom around so fast it was so funny. I always called him NASCAR!

Our routine became so easy. If he wasn't with me I checked on him constantly. In the evenings we'd sit in the sun,or in the grass so he could eat bugs and grass. Eventually we just started growing earthworms for him. His daily life was met with challenges. His wings were beat up from using them to get around when he wasn't in his chair. His legs got cold from not using them,and he had poor circulation. He eventually lost a toe,which was traumatizing for me. We figured all these things out though. I sewed him leg wraps,wing covers and we did PT on the legs at night. He stayed clean,no messy bum,was able to eat and drink with ease and he had bumpers in his nest and pen in the right spots to help him move around and stay comfortable. Even had a little chicken buddy for company.

At almost two years he started not holding weight and wasn't thriving. He was having joint trouble in the good leg. It was around Christmas and we were busy so I moved him up to the spare room to stay close and get more care. Slowly he just got tired and wouldn't eat so I syringe fed him and gave him extra nutritional supplements. On the Monday after Christmas we had been out and came home to a power outage. I had cleaned him up and gave him his meds and sat on the couch with him by candlelight. He was so content,at the time it was so dark I didn't realize he was dying. When the power came back on I had put him in his nest to rest and could tell he was going downhill fast. I wish I had held him but I was right by his side the whole time. His eyes were so clear and bright he just kept looking into my eyes. I remember thinking how can these eyes so vibrant so alive be dying right here in front of me. He died beautifully with his eyes closed in a perfect position.

Round the clock care for two years had become so normal,I enjoyed being with him so much. I told him every day how much I loved him. He was my " stop and smell the roses" my safety blanket,my friend,my world. From day one even before his injury I just was so blessed with this little bird with unbelievable intelligence,understanding,kindness and love.

Right now I struggle with guilt that I should have figured out what was wrong. We came so far,how could I loose him like this. Special needs animals are my specialty, I should have been able to save my best friend. I know there is a lesson here,or I'm supposed to go away from this with something. Right now I just miss my friend,miss my life,miss my peaceful time at the end of every day with my little Easter chicken. I've list many amazing animals in my day but by far this is the hardest thing I've been through. What a blessing to find this group.

Thank you for reading his story,and not judging me for loving this little guy with all my heart.

Larissa
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Beaglemomma
Oh my goodness who would judge you for giving LOVE to one of God's little creatures.  You did everything possible and some that seem impossible for this little life.  I admire you for doing all you did for this little guy and as someone who had a dog with severe allergies----- I was always on the alert for anything that could be a potential problem for my baby, I do understand the constant vigilance it takes to nurture a "special needs" little one. 

We are all struggling with guilt whether it is justified or not, so give yourself a break.  I doubt anyone could have done more.  Be kind to yourself.
Leaves.JPG 
janice
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jimmy17
Larissa, how I admire your love and dedication for your little Easter, he looks so cute on your photos. The love you had for him shines throughout your story, all the things you did for him - what a lovely bond the two of you shared.   When that bond with any of our special animals is no longer there, it leaves such a huge void - especially when you have been so used to caring for their every need. Take care, Jackie. xx

J Taylor
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cakes488

Bravo to you for coming up with inventive solutions to improve Easter's life ten fold!  What an inspiration you and Easter are to not give up!!
I know when you are used to caring for your loved one round the clock..it is quite an upset when those duties no longer need to be done. 
One is at a loss for what to do with oneself.  I am struggling too with the "new routine" or lack there of one.  I am struggling like you with this new (and unwanted) life.  Just keep going through the motions I suppose and it will get better....it just has to. 

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bartlett
I remember your earlier post and I so hope you're doing some better now. I would think that with pets like birds or chickens that it's really hard to diagnois what's going on so you should not be feeling guilty. Probably even a vet would have been hard pressed to know what to do. I think the time and care you put into this little chicken speaks volumns about what kind of person you are. Please be kind to yourself and know you did your very best.
Joan
joan bartlett
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Larissa
It's so hard when "we" or "us" becomes........just me. It changes your life.it changes who you are,just like that. Maybe that's what it really boils down to for us all. Who are we now without them. Finding ones self in life in general is hard. I guess this is where we find out what we're really made of and how we hold up to such tragedy. One think I KNOW FOR SURE. This group here is made of love,generosity,compassion and truly cares for each other. In my "new" journey without Easter I have a new found hope and faith in people. Just when I was convinced the world was full of jerks and ugliness I stumble on this site. And I don't believe in coincidence. Grasping at a shred of anything positive that's come from loosing him,so I'll take that as a tiny win!

Joan,thank you for the point you made about the vet. I never thought of it really. We practically had to beg the first vet to see him. Just no avian vets anywhere. I felt very alone with Easters care as there was nowhere to turn for help. I think that's where the guilt stems. It was me and only me that made choices and decisions,and I had no guidance or advice. Thank you for making that point.

Thank you all for letting me share my story and photos. He was so stinking cute! I've read several of your stories and am just amazed at how every day you help me through it yet again. When things are bad reading the posts again helps. I can read the same things over and over and each time it still helps. From the bottom of my heart thank you ,and thanks for letting me share my story of "us"
Larissa
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bartlett
You're right on target about the goodness and understanding found here. I read online so much about harm caused to our helpless animals by people that I find to be so unbelievaby cruel. When we care so much it's hard to imagine any one that calls himself a human being doing the things they do. I sometimes wonder how they are allowed to exist.
Do you remember me telling you about the little blue jay I was raising. He, like your Easter was "so stinking cute".
Please know that being a lover of all animals I can certainly identify with how you feel. Many hugs.
Joan
joan bartlett
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EM
You're such an amazing person. There aren't enough kind words to describe you and your good deeds. God used you in such a beautiful way to lovingly care for one of his beloved creatures.
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Larissa
Yes Joan,I have shared your story too. You shared that right after I lost Easter. I was very cautious posting about him,for fear I would be ridiculed and my heart could not take that. Your story gave me the courage to post freely how I was grieving and not hold back. This was all way before I realized how amazing people are here and no one would have treated me poorly. .I may have never shared it or stuck around.I know the end for your little jay wasn't as you hoped but the fact that you saved him and cared so much is the whole point of why the Lord gives folks like us a chance with them. Because we care. No matter how big or small,they all count. Do you happen to have any pictures of your blue jay?
Larissa
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Wileykitten
Hi Larissa.. I just emailed u but after, I searched for ur story. I want to thank u for loving this beautiful creature so much and for giving him a life he would have never known if it wasnt for u. I see so many stories of these and many other farm animals being "thrown away" for illness and disfigurement and it truly breaks my heart, so to see someone just love this chicken so deeply and unconditionally is absolutely amazing to me and I want u to know i think u were the best mom and friend he could have and did know.
I will never forget ur story or compassion for this gentile, delicate blessing.

Thank u for sharing this story and for letting all of us know about Easter.

May God bless u and continue to comfort u in this immense loss. Find solace in knowing God has him and will reunite u when He calls u Home and u will never be apart again... the only difference is Easter will be whole and u will only need to love and hold him and enjoy each other once again.

Love,
Stacie
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Larissa
Thank you Stacie,such kind words. We live on a farm with dairy goats,horses,donkey,chickens,turkey,dogs and cats. Easter was truly my sidekick. I miss him terribly still and probably always will. With this loss though I am trying to get a better grasp on grief and understand it to better cope. When you have a lot of animals you lose a lot of animals. We've had so much loss over the years,nothing has hurt so deep as loosing Easter though. I'm trying to learn to be strong but sometimes just need to be alone to cry. So I take each day one at a time and count it as a blessing!
Larissa
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Evie123
Dear Larissa, you are a wonderful lady who was a mom to one of God's creatures and it is admiration you deserve and no one with a heart would ever ridicule such a story of devotion. The pain of losing a beautiful baby is the same no matter what form they take. We all feel your same grief, without all the wonderful people on here I feel I would have drowned in my well so I hope you can take some comfort too in knowing you are not alone. X
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Larissa
Thank you Evie. I really do find comfort here, and I feel good getting Easters story out there now. All creatures big or small have a heart and soul in need of love. Each and every one.
Larissa
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Evie123
So true and it breaks my heart that so many animals are not treated well. They are all wonderful sentient beings with only love to give and kindness to ask for. I so want to change my career to work with animals and need to be pro active in doing something about this.
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