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Tuesday, August 22, 2017

A Year and Still Just Coping.

Today marks a year since I lost Mr. Pud and while I can say that it went by fast, I can also say that every friggin’ day of that year was painful.

Mr. Pud for those of you who don’t know, was my faithful companion for ten short years. We found him as an 11 month old pup in our old neighborhood and he broke our hearts because he desperately wanted to come into the house and be a part of a family. We tried to find him a home but no one wanted a “big dog” and even though we had three dogs already, we took him in.

It wasn’t easy though.

Mr. Pud was selective at best when it came to who could be around him. He didn’t get along with two of our dogs and was a little rough with our old lady dog. We lived in an abusive situation so that didn’t help either and Mr. Pud soon developed an intolerance for shouting and a definite dislike for ANYONE who raised their voice at me. So it was often just me and him. Sometimes my mom as well but he trusted ONLY me 100%. That was okay though, I loved him enough for 100 people and he loved me no matter how I looked, smelled, or acted and believe me those were some really difficult times where I honestly felt that I only had him on my side.

That was our life, we leaned on each other. He protected me and I protected him. We had a lot of ups and downs but when I was diagnosed with severe depression Mr. Pud became best friend, nanny, body guard, and my guide. What could have quickly become a dark and yes, dangerous time for me was instead one we went through together and I can honestly say I survived because of him. If I had a really bad day with the depression, Mr. Pud would insist I get up out of bed and play with him. If I had a severe migraine, he cuddled me and gave me kisses. If I got anxious, he laid on my lap. It sounds so simple when I say it like that but in reality it was a very deep connection we shared. It may sound funny but if I were to describe our relationship, I would say (Because my mom brought this up when she saw the movie in theaters) Mr. Pud and I were like Hiccup and Toothless from the How to Train Your Dragon films. And yes, I noticed the resemblance between him and Toothless, all black, all attitude, all loyalty.

Of course, a dog’s life is never long and I knew I would have to say goodbye to him but I honestly wasn’t expecting it to be so soon. Last year he became sick so suddenly and we rushed him to the emergency room where they found out he had cancer. After that he spent a day and a half at the emergency room before we brought him to the house. We were going to see if there was anything we could do for him but that following Monday, he got very ill and we took him to the vet where I had to make the choice to let him go. That day stays with me even now and I try not to think about everything that happened and how scared he was because it drives me wild with grief.

Any pet parent will tell you that saying goodbye is so painful but every once in awhile you meet “The One” and that one pet’s passing is more painful than any other. It doesn’t mean you loved them more, just that the connection was something different. I’ve said goodbye to three dogs and two sweet little cats (My Amelia passed away from an unknown infection July 2) before and it hurts like the dickens but with Mr. Pud I have to say, I went to a very bad place for awhile and no one knew.

This is how he would look at me every morning.
In this case, time does not heal all wounds because I have felt the same amount of pain every day since and while I can somewhat function (Thanks to Hayley), I hate that no one but me and two other people know how special, how beautiful he was. All people saw was a black dog, a “common” dog with problems but when I looked at him, I saw everything that mattered to me and when he looked at me, I saw how much he loved me and to him I was not flawed. I know I compared our relationship to that of Hiccup and Toothless but you know what? It was also like Daenerys and Drogon from Game of Thrones. He wasn’t always easy but when I needed him most he was always by my side. It’s why I called him my dragon and it’s why I loved him so much.

I miss his little face looking at me with such love in the mornings, I miss his scratchy little nose poking me in the middle of the night so I could lift up the blanket so he could go under and snuggle me, I miss opening my eyes and seeing the back of his head and his goofy ears, I miss his comforting presence whenever I was sick, I miss him rolling over constantly so I could rub his white spot (The ONLY white he had was on his chest, just an inch of white fur) I just miss him, and almost everything reminds me of him so it makes it more painful. Even Hayley reminds me of him because she's a pit bull like him, and she does some things that he used to do.

Mr. Pud will always be my baby, the sweetest pup and most loyal companion a girl could ever ask for.

No matter how much time passes, I will always feel his loss as keenly as if it happened yesterday. I'm just grateful that I have Hayley to help me, and even though she and I don't have the same connection I had with Mr. Pud, she's still a very special little girl.

No matter how painful it was to lose him, no matter how long I grieve, I would never trade one second of the short time I had with him. I wouldn't deny myself a single memory he left me with. I loved that dog with everything I had and I always will. He taught me so much about unconditional love, patience, and acceptance.

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