Monday, July 18, 2011

That Umbilical Cord

I don't have kids. I have animals.

We threw a surprise 40th wedding anniversary party for my parents this weekend and my sister made a great DVD of pictures from them dating and us growing up. Two of the photos were of me basically loving a kitten to death.

Somethings never change.

To this day I have a love for animals that may be a bit unhealthy by some standards. In movies when people die I sometimes don't cry. If an animal dies or is injured it almost inevitable that I will dissolve into tears.

I have no husband and no children but I do have Moxie and Tessie. Moxie, my 100 pound 2 1/2 year old Bernese Mountain Dog and Tessie, my 7 pound who knows what cat fill my house with almost more than any human could. I feel guilt when I'm not around them enough. I feel pride when they show how well behaved and smart they can be. It's weird, I know.

Moxie is at the vet today getting her picture taken. She has a limp for some still unknown reason (probably sympathy for me and my stupid limp for all I know) so I took her to the vet to get some x-rays and just to make sure everything is a-OK. I don't usually see her during the day anyway but just knowing she is at the vet instead of at home in her dark cool cave of a garage where she has access to her yard if she wants or needs it has her more on my mind. I can't imagine what I would be like as a mother to a human. How in the world do you not fall apart at the slightest inconsistency in your day?

We talked today about what it will be like to lose your dog. Two of my friends have dogs who are significantly older than Mox. I remember how heartbreaking and horrific it was to lose Ella. I loved that cat but a cat is different than a dog. I love Tess a lot. I would definitely miss her cuddles in the crook of my legs at night and her sometimes scary attention and eyes that don't close because they are so big. However, she doesn't depend on me the way Moxie does which creates a different type of bond. It's never easy to lose a family member - whether two legged or four.

For now, I'm going to drum my fingers until my mom picks up her granddog from the vet for me and I know she is safely home and then I'm going to hug and kiss her when I see her at home tonight. I'm going to enjoy every moment I have with her and try really hard to not think about a time when those moments might no longer exist.