I've always claimed that I am not a pet person. That I don't REALLY like animals. That my life would be fine if I didn't know a cat or a dog, or a bird or a rat. But truly, at the core, I have a lot of affection for (cetain) animals.
When I was a little girl (cue the sappy music) my family had a dog named Spirit. I think he was some sort of mutt - kinda of a poodle. Truthfully, I really can't remember him - I've seen pictures of Spirit that were taken during camping trips with our family, but I'm not sure I can recall playing with him. What I do remember is that one day he was a part of our family - then the next day he was gone. I do recall coming home from school one day to find out that Spirit was gone - my mom and dad said they had given him away to a family that lived out in the county. My mom said that kids were always teasing him from the alley behind our house so she decided that he would be better off living with a family out in the country where he could run and play.
Honestly . . . I didn't believe it. I thought that my mom had just gotten tired of the dog and had sent it to the pound. We never talked about it again. And, how do you miss a dog you don't even remember playing with? But, I do remember being sad, a lingering sadness, that I hadn't gotten a chance to say goodbye.
As I have gotten older and become a mom (cue more sappy music) I have come to appreciate and need animal friends. Our golden retriever came into our lives as a stray dog - and he has stayed. He is the sweetest, most loyal and calm dog - and some days I forget to appreciate what a great pet he is.
We have also aquired a series of cats. First came Midnight, a male black cat we adopted from the pound four years ago - he is still with us and is hands down the coolest cat ever. We adopted him for mouse control - we love him for his cat antics. Then came Emily, who was run over by a car in the driveway. Then NeNe, who disappeared - but my daughter is sure she is living across the road. Hubby and I know that she was actually hit and killed by a car. Then came Jenny who was a great kitty and birthed a delightful litter of kittens. My kiddos loved Jenny and the kittens - and then we gave some of them up for adoption. All but Croon, Jenny's daughter. Then . . . Jenny disappeared over Labor Day weekend. So, we still have Croon and adopted two new kitties, Whisper and Captain Jack Sparrow - thankfully, they are still with us.
But . . . truth be told, the reason I have been crying since Friday is that on November 2nd we were fortunate enough to be gifted the sweetest dog ever - Wiggle Rum Tow Mater. He was intended to be a birthday gift for my son's 10th birthday - but our entire family fell in love with him! He was spirited and affectionate and loved to give kisses and jump up on our beds. He didn't have a tail - he just wiggled his rump - about 100 times per day. He loved belly rubs and conversations and soccer games and walks. He only lived with us for a few short weeks - but we knew we couldn't imagine life without him. Until . . . he was struck by a car and died a short time later on Friday. We didn't find out his fate until late afternoon on Saturday - after many frantic hours and phone calls searching for him. He is now gone forever. I told my kids the truth about what happened. They are sad he is gone. They are even more sad that they never had the chance to say goodbye.