Thursday, December 9, 2010

I was oh, so loved.

I can't even bear to write the words, they hurt so bad.

Gone, she is really gone.

I tuck her under covers to keep her warm, taking time to enjoy her nuzzling hugs, kiss her soft cheeks, let her clean my hands with her rough pink tongue, whisper I love you.

When I come back two hours later she is gone, where I can not follow, at least not today. She has just left, her fur still warm, but her body growing heavy, empty of the puppy spirit that made her her, empty of life. The emptiness is heavy; in her and in me. There was no warning, no sign to alert, prepare me. I sob, cry out for help, writhe in pain, forgo sleep, dismiss food, avoid the kitchen, shun the garage yet under it all, Peace.

He is here; reminding me that she was His. I had given her to Him.

And He simply whistled to His dog to come home.

She will wait for me there.

And I remember, I was oh, so loved.

Years before she actually became mine, she had claimed me as hers. From the moment we met to the very last day she lit up when I walked into a room.

She became the joy that made me lean forward at my steering wheel in anticipation to coming home every time I left the house.

She had mastered the trick of kissing away tears,

of hugging with just her chin and cheek,

of sleeping with her head and her paw in my lap in the perfect TV watching cuddle,

of playing hide and go seek badly,

of discovering me hiding under her covers and digging her way in to join me repeatedly, without ever growing bored of the game,

of singing an entire aria with full orchestration while whining for lunch and of incrementally moving that same meal from 6:00 pm to noon (puppers knew how to work the system),

of knowing when a camera was trained on her and instantly moving, even if she had been asleep,

and of daily reminding me that God clearly loves me to allow me the loan of her.

For all of her faults or perhaps more because of them, she was me with fur on: my own mini-me. He used her to illustrate my struggles with Him in vibrant, polka-dotted living color.

I saw myself over and over through His eyes as I watched her. Sometimes a fearful and wounded heart struggling to absorb Love, to trust, to believe that she was safe and provided for;

more often a squirmy pup looking for love and a cuddle.

And yet one who was always, is always, even on her most ornery day, adored.

I am a kinder, more patient woman for owning her.

My children will have a wiser mother, thanks to her.

Someday a husband will appreciate that one of the first lessons she taught me was that I will absolutely need to parent in a pair. I alone am not enough.

For over twelve years I have loved her.

For nine, she was my constant companion.

My heart is shattered. I am unprepared. I look for her eager face every time I enter my kitchen. 

I thought heard her greeting bark when I arrived home tonight. 

The entire rhythm of my day is derailed. Even now I feel the instinct to go and walk her before tucking her in, cozy, for the night. 

I do not know how I will go on.

Jesus knows.

He knows how.

I was oh, so loved.

I am oh, so loved.

Goodbye Stinkerbell, I love you.

your mama,
Blog Med Sig 4

You care for people and animals alike, O LORD. How precious is your unfailing love, O God!
Psalms 36: 6b – 7a

*All of these photos are mine.  Please do not use without permission.


all things new said...

oh was she so blessed to have you as her loving and patient mama! what a beautiful tribute to your baby girl and best friend. i love how you got to tuck her in one last time, displaying so faithfully and tangibly all of your love for her. she went to Him all tucked in, in peace and joy, covered fully in LOVE :) beautiful. but i know, heartwrenching.

Anonymous said...

Joy, I am so very sorry for your loss. We just lost our precious Samantha 2 years ago. I know how deep the pain is right now. Yes, Jesus will give you time to experience deep loss and then heal you of it.

The unconditional love of our pets is a miracle and one that isn't duplicated in our human relationships.

Love you

Leslie said...

Well. I just finished reading all of your posts on your beloved Stinkerbell. Then this one, which, of course, made me weep. Many of the things you said here could have been my words after losing our beloved basenji boy almost 4 years ago. I know we will see them again, but it is so hard to lose them when they are such good good friends. How wonderful, though, that she was so very very loved...

Debbie said...

This is still a fresh loss for you. I understand, having put down my Setter a few years ago. She was my first K-9 pal and she taught me so much. Invaluable lessons in faith taught by a dog. I love that Dog is God spelt backwards! Blessings on you as you keep walking.

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