In March of 2005 I spotted a skinny, mangy, lonely puppy in the corner of a kennel. She was there in Petcetera with a dog rescue group. The group was trying to find homes for four rescue pups. In the other corner a crowd watched three furry, beautiful white husky pups tumble in play.
I was drawn to the sad eyes in the corner. I could read her mind. She knew she was not what the crowd wanted. I’ve never been one for crowds.
I took her home that day, and I helped her recover from the mange and fed until she was healthy girl. Over the last 12 years she has been my shadow. Under foot. In the doorway. Waiting at the door.
On February 11, 2017 my beloved dog Tessa took her last breath. I woke up at 7 a.m. and looked over at her bed. She was motionless.
Dogs don’t live forever. Nothing does. I know that. But habits die hard. Going downstairs in the morning and not letting her out the door to pee. Going
out to shovel the walk and calling her to join me. Going to bed at night and calling her upstairs for bedtime. Going out to buy groceries and not saying “Bye bye Tessa, be a good girl” as I close the door. Coming in the door and not exclaiming “Hello Tessa!” Laughing as she tries to sit pretty until I take off my shoes while she waits for her hugs. Frying bacon and turning to watch the dog come around the corner.
Habits die hard because they bring us happiness. So do memories. To that end…
I carved her into the family fence in the garden a couple years ago. I painted her portrait last year. We had the vet make us a paw imprint that I will place beneath her likeness in the garden. This morning I added her to my 365 day embroidery challenge. I’m planning in my head how I can sculpt her likeness.
So while I know there is no way that her absence won’t change the way I go through my day, I can insert her into all the other things I do so that she will always be a part of the habits and the hobbies I keep.