Debby on…her sister and Tamdin


This morning, in the quiet stillness of the dark, the time is appropriate for sharing about Tamdin. And the love between her and my sister Lori.

Tamdin arrived in the original crew delivered on my doorstep August 31, 2001. She was wearing a sweater to keep her recently shaved body warm. In 2003 Lori and Ron came to Colorado for Nate’s high school graduation. I think that’s when she fell in love with Yangsom. A few months later, in conversation she mentioned I wouldn’t give her the dog she wanted. Ah! But, I have her half-sister! On the next trip Rick and I took back to Norfolk, Tamdin rode along.


Lori was hesitant. Ron had been wanting a hunting dog. Upon our arrival, Tamdin walked into their house, claimed the rug in front of the kitchen sink hers and settled in as if she’d always lived there. Holding her the following day, Ron asked Tamdin if she was a hunting dog. Hunter, he’d call her.


Later, Tamdin’s granddaughter Ling went to live with Lori, Ron and Tamdin.  I have photos of them out on Lori’s beautiful lawn. I have photos of Tamdin and Lori in St. Louis when we presented the Gompa dogs during Tibet – Remembering Our Past. I have photos of Tamdin when she still lived in Colorado.  Reader, if you’d like to see more photos, you can. It is words I want to share right now. Words from Lori. Words from our sister Kelly…

Hi Debby,
It’s with a heavy heart to say Tamdin last breath was today. 
Surgery wasn’t an option this time around. 
With her going down hill so fast the last few days, Lori and Ron made the hard decision to let her go.  Let her go before the real suffering set in.
Our sister did her best to keep her little dog going for more weeks than expected.  Tamdin was a lucky dog to have such awesome love and care!!!


Hi Debby,

I wanted to let you know that I had to put Tamdin asleep today.  I am so sad.  I feel like there’s a big hole in my heart.  She meant the world to me.  I’ll write more in a few days when I’m not feeling so emotional about it, but I wanted to let you know.

Love, Lori

I hope my sisters aren’t mad that I’m sharing their words. Their words express the depth of the bond between Lori and Tamdin. They are a tribute to a sweet little dog. If they’re mad, I’ll remove their words.

Hi Debby,

I am glad to see this week come to an end.  Losing Tamdin is the hardest thing I’ve gone through in a very long time.  I loved her dearly.  She was constantly at my side whether I was working, reading, or watching TV, or taking my evening bath.  She even had a bed next to mine.  Do you remember when you first brought her to me?  I wasn’t sure at the time if I was ready for a dog.  You told me to just give it a try, that if I ended up not wanting her, you would take her back.  Thank you Debby for bringing her into my life.  I only wish her time with me had been longer.  It was so hard for me to let her go but I knew for her sake I had too.  The middle of last week I could things were getting worse with her.  She seemed to have trouble swallowing her food, so I cut it into smaller pieces yet and that seemed to help.  The weather was nice here Friday, so Ron and I took she and Ling for a walk on the Cow Boy trail.  They were both so excited when I got their leashes out.  I wanted to get Tamdin out there at least one more time.  She absolutely loved her walks out there.  She wasn’t able to walk as far as she usually did, but that was okay, I carried her the rest of the way.  I had always meant to get a picture of her and Ling on their walk for you but never did.  I’ll get one of Ling for you sometime.  The last couple of days Ling has been sleeping back here while I work.  I hope she’ll continue to do so.  She’s a character.  I think she’s enjoying all the attention being on her.

And from an email Lori sent to Kelly… (gads, Kelly, now she might be mad at you too!)

I can’t begin to tell you how much I’ve appreciated you being here for me throughout this whole ordeal with Tamdin.  I know being with her yesterday when she was put to sleep couldn’t have been real easy for you either.  You thought a lot of her too.  I’ve been so worried about her from the beginning.  I keep telling myself I need to find comfort in knowing she’s out of any pain and discomfort she was feeling.  I just wished things could’ve been different, but they are not.  Ling knows something isn’t right.  She hung out with me today while I worked.  Maybe she’ll continue to do so.  I would like that.  I too, wrote Deb yesterday.  Just a short note for now.  I’ll forward what she sent me.  Of course the tears started flowing again when I opened it.  I know that each day that passes I’ll feel better about it, I just need to chase the ‘ghosts’ away.  Last night I couldn’t bear to take a bath before bed so I showered.  I would always carry Tamdin up the steps and set her down at the top.  Off she’d run down the hallway to the bathroom, all excited to get her cookies.  I loved the way her feet sounded as she ran down the hallway.  I would always laugh at her.  She’d eat her cookies, roll around on the rug for several minutes, and make a nest in my bathrobe while I read (or fell asleep! :o)  ) in the tub.  I think tonight I’ll try a bath.

Love, Lori

PS:  Ron told Dustin yesterday about Tamdin and today Dustin and Kari sent me a beautiful bouquet of flowers.

Sometimes words express what images cannot.

Sometimes images express what words cannot.


4 Comments on “Debby on…her sister and Tamdin”

  1. Susan M says:

    Oh Kelly, Lori, Debbie, I am so sorry you have all just been through this, and I am so sad that Tamdin is gone. I am so grateful that she was in your hands when it was time for her to go because obviously you knew when and how and with what love you could pass her on without more pain and suffering. It is an amazing gift to be able to let go.

    Debbie, when you get a chance, can you give the names of the four dogs in the picture towards the top of the post?

    Wishing you all a day with not too much sadness….

  2. kelly says:

    I love how you did Tamdin’s tribut!!! Deb you really do just an wonderful job with your blog, too cool!!

    I think it’s just too awesome for our dear sister be too mad:) Well I know she will be a bit quirky with me about the picture of her!

    Her email about their bath routine was too touching to go un-noticed. I love the part of Tamdin running down the hall and how Lori loved to hear the sound of her feet.

    Thank you Susan for your caring words.

  3. “Not the least hard thing to bear when they go from us, these quiet friends, is that they carry away with them so many years of our own lives.” – John Galsworthy

    Godspeed, little one … may those who loved you find comfort in your memory in the days ahead.

  4. Katy says:

    Having loved and lost, and loved and lost…..and learned to let go and go one, I share your tears and your heart ache. But knowing that wonderful love is so worth it.
    Know that she is only removed from you in body. Her little spirit sails on….

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