Wifeys & Gentlemen,
I write about all types of relationships on this blog and today is no different. Today, I want to spend a little time remembering my amazing dog; he passed away on 5/14/19 (the night before my birthday).
My husband and I adopted little Simon when he was around 3 years old (they told us he was less than 2 years but our vet said differently and he aged pretty quickly from there). We decided, on a whim, that it might be nice to adopt a dog together; even though we were only just beginning to get serious and didn’t actually live in the same home (about a year into our relationship).
We made a trip to the South City SPCA and, with absolutely no intention of adopting a chihuahua, fell in love with him almost instantly. In a room with about 6 or 7 other dogs his size and type, the little dude walked right up to the glass window and stared right into our eyes, head slightly cocked to one side. He was just too damn cute not to meet, so they brought us into one of the “getting to know you” rooms, warning us to take it slow because he was “a little skittish”.
This skittish anxiety never went away, btw. It was one of the best things about him.
It was love at first sight. Despite him being kind of a weirdo, my then boyfriend and I just melted as we played around with him and saw how funny and tiny he was. We left being unsure of what we wanted to do. I admit I was a little nervous to pull the trigger. He represented so much for us; would this mean we’re really really serious now? How were we going to divide responsibilities when we live in different places? What would happen if we broke up? Who would get the dog?
My boyfriend (now husband) was so excited and submitted the application within in a day or two after our first meeting, and before I knew it, I was taking him home.
Simon was the strangest little dog I’d ever met. He hated most (not all, but most) other dogs and absolutely adored other people (especially the ladies). He was strictly a lap dog and wasn’t ever the most athletic or agile (he often tripped on his own two feet or missed judged a jump from the floor to the furniture). He never played fetch or enjoyed playing with ANY toys; in fact, he was scared of a lot of the toys we tried to bring him. He was a picky eater and spent the first couple years of his life never fully finishing a meal and pushing his food flat into his bowl with the top of his nose (shout out to FreshPet & Ollie for being his food of choice — he devoured these brands in one sitting, thank God!).
We didn’t even hear him bark until the 2nd year of having him!
He wasn’t perfect, but he was perfect for us. Anyone who knew him loved him as much as we did. He was there when times were hard. He was comfort when we were sick, sad, or stressed. He was even a little groomsmen at our wedding. For 6 amazing years, he was our joy.
We always knew about the heart murmur. When we took him in for his very first vet appointment, the doctor told us it was something we’d need to “keep an eye on”. However, there wasn’t much we could do aside from a good diet and regular check ups. It wasn’t until 6 months ago that things took a turn; the murmur became the catalyst for congestive heart failure. While his prognosis was “okay” he spent his last 6 months with us on daily medication.
Even if you know the facts, I don’t think you can ever prepare for the loss of a loved one. When he was diagnosed, we knew he’d have 6 months to 3 years left, and we tried to have faith that he’d give us those 3 years. He couldn’t, and that’s okay.
Regardless, Simon had a wonderful last day with us and I will cherish that forever. We did all of his favorite things, not knowing it would be the last time. If anything, that’s what has been the hardest for me.
I wish I’d known that our nap together on the couch was our last. I wish I’d known that those pieces of steak I gave him from my lunch were his last “extra” treats (that dog was spoiled AF). That his morning walk with dad was the last walk. Maybe if I did, I would have made them more special? It’s weird because I know that’s not possible, but I wish I didn’t feel like I took that day for granted… and I do.
It’s hard not to blame myself.
Maybe I should have taken him to the vet sooner? Maybe I should have done more research on natural remedies to extend his life?
It’s hard not to get caught up in the what-ifs, but what I do know is that he died with so much love around him; love from me and love from my husband. While it has gotten easier over the last few days, there is so much loneliness in this house; so much quiet. Sometimes, I’ll temporarily forget he’s gone and I look up at his usual spot and realize he’s not there. Sometimes I smell him or swear on everything in me that I saw his shadow coming around the corner. The absence is hard to adjust to.
Simon Chug, Simonè, Puppers, Puppykins, Chugger, Chug nugget, Sun-Dog, Salmon, Mr. Licky-paws (and the many more nicknames you’ve had): mom & dad miss you more than words can say. We cry a little every day and a piece of us is forever missing. We hope you know we were there for you until the very end (and after, when we got to say goodbye). We hope you didn’t die feeling scared or alone. We hope you know how much you meant to us. You made us a family. You made me into a forever dog lover and owner. No dog will ever replace you in our hearts, but we honor and appreciate you for paving the way for the other little pups that will make their way into our lives.
I’m sorry I’ve been so inconsistent with my posts lately. Between my journey to becoming a mother (which I promise I will be sharing soon) and losing my fur baby on the eve of my 32nd birthday, things have been pretty difficult. Please let this be a reminder to cherish and value your relationships, no matter what kind. Things happen so fast and so unexpectedly. It’s important to value your friends and family as much as you can for as long as you can.
Sound off in the comments with stories and photos if you have a fur baby that you are missing like crazy. I never knew I could be this sad, but I am so grateful for everything our Simon gave us. In a way, the sadness is comforting; I know how much I must have loved him to feel this hurt so deeply. Know what I mean? It’s a love like no other and we can’t wait until we’re ready to do it all again.
Ps. We owe you guys TWO podcasts and I promise they are going up THIS WEEK!
Until Next Time,
Carry on Wifeys!