Standing in Place, Past and Present

In November of 1997, a 6 month old pup was placed in my arms. She was tiny, soft and warm. She nuzzled under my chin and sighed.  She looked up at me, licked my chin and settled back into place.

In the early morning hours last Tuesday, my 16 year old pup was still tiny, soft and warm.  She nuzzled under my chin and sighed. She looked up at me, licked my chin and settled back into place.

A few hours later we stood together in her vet’s office.  The news was incomplete yet completely definitive: we could run a battery of tests to find out what has happened in over the past 38 hours but the prognosis was she would not get better.  She had stopped eating and drinking. One side of her tiny, soft, warm body did not respond. She would not be coming home with me.

She and I had come full circle.  Together we started a life that wouldn’t last.  We bought a house and moved. We married and divorced. We started and stopped 3 jobs.  We welcomed and sadly said goodbye to a cat.  We fell in love again. We married and moved again.

Our journey together began and ended with a nuzzle and a kiss.

Someone once said a person is in your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime. Pets span all 3.  That little dog gave me a reason to get up in the morning when I felt life wasn’t worth trying.  She celebrated every time I walked in the room. She made friends with countless people who claimed they didn’t like dogs.  She offered comfort and love to a group of struggling divorcees.

Her reason:

to teach me

naps are restorative

nothing beats eggs for breakfast

roll in the grass

the sun there is bask in

greet each person like a VIP

examine every blade of grass

every petal

every scent

 unconditional love

Her season:

16 years, 2 months

3 homes, 2 marriages, 1 cat

enough life lessons  for a graduate degree

She’ll be with me for a lifetime.