She looked like a miniature Ewok; soft and cuddly. And from the moment she scooted underneath my hair to nuzzle my neck, I knew I had to have her. Two weeks later, I signed the papers and made her mine forever.
At home, she became my constant companion. Everywhere I went, Gracie followed. I taught her words such as sit, stay, no, and I love you. In return, she educated me in the fine art of puppy language. Staring declared, “I need to potty.” Dancing said, “I want a treat.” Barking demanded, “I want attention.” Day after day, we bonded over conversations, feedings, bathing, and training until we understood each other perfectly.
Still, we’ve had our moments of disagreements. For instance, as a pup, Gracie played the sibling and often nipped at my daughter. Her first Christmas she played the thief, stealing figurines from the Victorian village we’d assembled beneath the tree. Even now, she plays the escape artist, squeezing through or climbing over the bars of her pen.
These days, I dwell on the good things about Gracie, because I see more of her slipping away each day. Her eyes are dim, and she’s hard of hearing. Her steps are slow, and she’s forgetful. I’m preparing for a life without her.
When she and I walk, I reminisce about the way her eyes express her concern while sitting with me during storms and through sickness. I smile at her patience with my daughter, who used to dress her in doll clothes. I marvel over her delight when floating on a raft in the pool with my teenage son. Such memories are unforgettable treasures.
After fifteen years with Gracie, one thing is certain. She has become an irreplaceable friend, and I shall never be without her.
Note: I wrote this for a class this year and thought I would share my thoughts with you about this sweet friend of mine. I’m not sure I’ll be able to write about her when she decides to leave me. 🙂 I do hope you enjoyed meeting my pup.