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March 17, 2007

Waiting on Another Season

Although I would have preferred for the past few, difficult days to be less dreary, I'm sure Cody — my dog — would not have chosen any other weather than we've had. He loved the winter and the edible water that coats the ground in white. Now that I must write of him in the past tense, I wish the clouds would drift away, although I've been glad for the visible reminder of the tracks that he left in this life.

He was such an integral part of my life for so long that it's hard to believe he's gone. The yard seems empty. There's an undertone of loneliness to the ruckus of my household. I caught myself putting aside corned beef for a dog who would never come to his dish. And I know that a thousand moments have yet to resonate with his absence — not wrapping a scarf around my neck for our walk tonight, not bringing him in before going to bed, not rushing to feed him before work on Monday, not brushing out the pillow's worth of downy fur shed when the weather warms, not watching him sprint up and down the fence as the kids walk by in the spring or seeing him revel in next winter's first snow or seeking out the place in which he'd go to hide from the summer's heat after his favorite bush makes way for an addition to the house in a year or so.

So here I've another of those instances in which all of the rational understanding and lists of pros, cons, and alternatives avail one hardly at all. On a day to day basis, Cody claimed comparatively little of my time and thought. But he had always been here, and I miss him. Our moments were always precious, even when they felt a bit too much like a burden; even on those short, short walks when I could barely keep my eyes open, I had to admit that I was glad for the moment away from things.

As I said a week ago, he was very often precisely the dog that I needed, and it's difficult to imagine another dog's managing the same. So what do you do when the absence of the companion to whom you turned when you needed to work through problems becomes, itself, the problem? I guess you forge on and accept that you will heal.

But I like to think that Cody is still out there waiting for me to come home — to one home or another.

Posted by Justin Katz at March 17, 2007 11:47 PM
Life
Comments

We, too, lost an integral part of our family recently...Rosie, our Australian shepherd. She was always there, always part of us, and we miss her big expressive eyes and the way she always knew what was going on and what was needed from her. She was a "good dog," and though I'll always feel that I could have given her more, done more for her, paid more attention to her, she will always remain an important part of our family history.

Posted by: Kathy at March 19, 2007 12:16 PM

Hello. It's been a while since I stopped by your blog. I'm so sorry to hear about Cody's death. I've lost dogs too, including one that had diabetes. I know what it's like. My recommendation: Get another one. The new one will never replace the one that is gone because they are all individuals with their own personalities. I always get dogs from the Rescue League. I love watching them heal from being abandoned (and likely abused)and learn to trust and love again.

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