Love, Loss and Loving Miss Sadie
The three-year adoption anniversary of my little buddy, Remington, has come and gone. Unfortunately, in complete compliance with the surreal of crap that is the year 2020, our three-year-old pup passed away over the summer.
Sometimes, I just sit back and scratch my head. The question “Why?” pelts me at all hours – day or night.
I was completely shocked and devastated when Remi died. He got me out on walks on my darkest days. He made me laugh on my darkest days. He brought me pure joy on my darkest days.
How was I going to manage the grief and trauma I was already working through, when I now had to add the grief and trauma of losing him, too?
A day or so after losing Remi, I contacted the rescue from where we adopted him. Sheri, who started the rescue, was heart-broken. She told me Remi and his brothers were her rescue’s first set of pups to be rescued and adopted out. She thanked me profusely for giving Remi a wonderful life and home. One of the volunteers in her rescue kept her up-to-date on Remi, thanks to social media. Remi did have an amazing life, filled with a love, a large yard, homemade food, walks and care.
“Lynne, when you are ready for another dog, please let me know,” Sheri responded.
Now, I am not sure if there is a proper grieving time or not, but this I can share: I will always have a dog in my life, as long as I am able to care for one. Period. I love dogs. They are loyal and loving and protective, and – in a lot of ways – more decent than humans. I wasn’t sure when I would have a dog – I just knew that I would.
Six days after Remi died, Sheri contacted me. Concerned it might be too soon, she was very cautious, but wanted to share the photos of Sadie, who had been recently rescued. Sadie had been neglected by her previous owners, gave birth to a litter of puppies, and then was spayed. Just like us, Sadie had been through a traumatic time. She needed a lot of TLC, recovery time, and was a “snuggle-er.” A snuggle-er who loves naps.
Okay, I’m already liking this dog…
Seven days after Remi died, we went to Sheri’s home and visited Sadie. As soon as she was let out the door to greet us, one-by-one, Sadie jumped in our laps and licked us each in the face. She was so generous with her doggy kisses. And then, one-by-one, she started the process all over again. An enthusiastic jump up, paws like a hug, and more kisses on the chin. We played with her, gave her treats, took her for a walk.
We discussed if Sadie would be a good fit. Did we want a dog or a puppy? Were we ready to open our hearts again? Was it too soon?
I placed a leash in the car, on the off-chance we would be bringing Sadie home that night. I had sanitized Remi’s food bowls and toys, knowing one day there would be another dog in this house.
I’m really glad I did.
Sadie found her “fur-ever” home with us that night, and we found a balm for our severely broken hearts. I absolutely love the line, “Who rescued who?” Because in this case, she’s rescued us as much as we rescued her.
Just as Remi did, Sadie licks the tears off my face when I’ve been crying. Just like Remi, Sadie loves to go on walks, and she keeps me moving forward. Just like Remi, she brings joy to me.
And yet, she is her own “person,” if that’s allowed when describing a dog. Sadie has a nurturing way about her. She is protective, yet gentle. She meets you where you are. Need a doggy kiss? She gives it. Need a snuggle? She’s in your lap or curled up next to you in bed.
I described Remi as pure joy. I describe Sadie as pure love.
As we were leaving Sheri the evening of Sadie’s adoption, she asked me how I knew I was ready.
“If I have learned nothing else these past few years, life is short – too short. Why wait? I know I want a dog, and you knew exactly what we needed,” I responded.
To that, Sheri said she knew the minute she met Sadie she felt that this precious pup would be what our family needed. She couldn’t have been more correct. While Sadie needs a lot – rest, TLC, security, stability and some training – we, too, need a lot. Especially me. I need a lot of the same things Sadie needs, minus the training. LOL 😊 Seriously, grief is exhausting, and it is nice to take a rest with my loving dog curled up next to me. Sadie reminds me to self-care – especially walking daily – every time she sees her leash. She reminds me to take a break and play or just snuggle. She reminds me when it’s nap time.I will always miss my little buddy, Remi. In my heart, I know he led us to Sadie. #RescueDog Click To Tweet
I will always miss my little buddy, Remi. In my heart, I know he led us to Sadie. He knew he couldn’t be with us forever, even though he had found his fur-ever home. He knew our hearts would be broken wide-open with his loss, and he knew our hearts would be wide-open to helping another rescue dog, just as we opened our hearts to him.
Some of the tears Sadie licks off my face are the tears I shed for my little Remi. And she’s okay with that. She knows that those tears are the love I had for Remi, escaping from my eyes. And she also knows that as she licks those tears away, I will start to smile and giggle, and then she will snuggle me more until the tears are gone and there is nothing but laughter. And the love and care we show each other help us to navigate the “new normal” in both of our journeys.
© Lynne Cobb – 2020