Moving around and tidying my family room, my eyes rested on Chary’s empty bed. The bed sat in the corner, with the same dignity with which it had done so for years.
Chary was a little, chubby Shitzu that I adopted when she was eleven years old and lived with me until several months ago when she passed at the age of sixteen.
It must have been hard to move to a new home and new family at that age. She would hide dog cookies behind planters and sofa’s. I’m guessing she was worried I’d forget to feed her. I was a stranger. She did not know my heart yet. She had long tangled hair ( hated the groomer), very big eyes, a huge belly, and very short legs. Chary liked to exercise. She would walk and walk and run with purpose all over the house. She loved it when I played chase with her, which I tried to do every day. I truly believe she was trying to get me to do some aerobics. Silly dog.
When she first arrived, her skin would crawl when I touched her. So I respected that and didn’t touch her unless necessary. She understood human language, which helped us tremendously. She was nearly deaf and had an odd bark which I needed to explain to people when they looked at me perplexed.
Slowly but surely, this strange little dog became a great love of my life. I’d walk her about four times per day. As soon as we returned home, she’d wait until I wasn’t looking and run and pee on my Persian rug. Did I hear her laugh? We played hide and seek with “pee Mama’s rug” game.
Her passing was a good one. She became short of breath, afterwards just restful. I sat with her just whispering that I was with her and would place one finger on her head just in case she couldn’t hear me. Two hours and she was gone. We had a proper wake and buried her the next morning next to the Ginger flowers.
Several days afterwards, as I left the house, I glanced over to her resting spot and to my pleasure and surprise I saw my three feral kittens, on their hind legs, touching paws, dancing in a circle right on top of Chary’s grave. I laughed and I cried. What can I say? Chary had that effect on people. This beautiful tribute was totally befitting to this precious soul.
So Chary continued to live here for about another month or more. She would peek from behind sofa’s, running around like a chicken upstairs. She liked showing herself at meal times! But of course, she was like a tax toll collector, demanding her fair share of food.
Love never ends. Love never dims. That’s the beauty of it.
It’s taken me months to realize that her bed is empty.