For ten years, our lives have been punctuated by the sounds of the tags on his collar, jingling as he made his way trough the house or scratched an itch, their noise so familiar that whenever he’d get a new rabies tag and dog license, I’d have to readjust to the new sound. Our mornings and evenings rung to the sound of jingle bells on the back door that he would ring when he wanted to be let out.
And now things feel quiet and thick because he’s gone.
I don’t want to talk about his decline or the last few weeks when it became obvious that he was feeling worse.
I want to talk about his boundless energy and curiosity. I want to talk about him swimming until he couldn’t walk anymore, but if you’d throw the ball one more time? He couldn’t help himself and would run in after it.
I want to talk about how hard he worked to protect from all things he deemed threats. Namely, cats with hunched up backs and little boys with dark hair. (But he did protect me that one time the threat seemed real. Really.)
I want to talk about how he tolerated babies and cats. I want to talk about how he was sure Littlebit was a puppy and would watch, unwaveringly, anyone besides Big Daddy and me who’d try to touch her or hold her. I want to talk about how he’d bring her his rawhides to share.
I want to talk about how much Baby Bee loved him. I want to talk about the time I caught him laying down with her sitting in between his front paws like she was sitting on his lap. I want you to know, that he submitted to small injustices with nothing but a sigh.
I want you to know because that’s what is worth remembering.
No One Is Sure-January 3, 2012