Sadly, our little puppy, Lucky, was hit and killed on the road this afternoon. I never realized one could feel pain so deeply for a pet, but I have seen evidence of such tonight. We are grieving, each in our own way.
It was a difficult day anyway. I left the house earlier than usual this morning, shouting out orders to this one and that one as I ran out the door to the van. I left instructions with my husband to put the dog in the shop so she would be out of the elements. It has been a windy, rainy day. Even now as I write, the wind howls outside. Blustery weather, to put it mildly. Husband was busy finishing up morning errands, and we never finalized exactly what was to be done. About the dog. All I knew is that I did not want Lucky out in the rain. So my final words were to my husband.
“Put that dog in the shop…she’s soaking wet!”
Little did we know at the time, she had managed to outrun her shock collar and get through the invisible wire fencing system we had introduced mere days ago. And she did so when our son was on the way to the bus, unbeknownst to us.
Could’ve, would’ve, should’ve….
The last picture I have of her in my mind is from this morning. I can picture her now digging a hole in the dirt where we just finished putting a new septic system in the ground. She was as dirty as can be, happily digging there in that giant mud lot. She must have thought she hit the jackpot.
We waited until the very end of the day to tell the children. Truthfully, there was no other time in between in which to even sit down and think. What with swimming lesson for two hours, after school meetings with colleagues and another meeting with fellow congregants at my church. And then, we were all off to a music awards ceremony in which our son was to receive recognition for perseverance. We certainly did not want to bring anything up to him prior to his performance.
So, here we are. It has been a rough night.
I am mindful that we have only lost a pet. A cherished pet, but still, an animal. However, death is death. Grief is grief. We feel it using the same senses, even if the sensations are more acute in some situations than in others. And because all life is precious, we will stop to take notice. And grieve first and then remember. Later on, we will find strength to understand that life is fleeting and we are only here but for a breath. So make those breaths count. Even stinky doggy breaths. They count for a lot. Especially to the people that love them.
My son has had the hardest time of all the children in accepting this loss. To him, as to the rest, Lucky was a friend. A playmate. A companion. Her presence will be missed. She was funny, bright and loved. She was silly and wild. She was a true free spirit and she died doing what she loved doing best.
Fondly remembered, sadly missed, never forgotten. We’ll miss you, Lucky.