Two years ago, a little poodle named Shadow came into my home on Mother’s Day. She was to be the heart healer…..I had lost several of my little ones to monsters in the months before…….this elderly, nearly blind, abandoned poodle needed a mom…and I needed a furry child to hold in my arms again. I renamed her Poppy, in remembrance of all my babies, now in Spirit.
The first year, she blossomed like a poppy…….prancing about my Irish wolfhound, always at her side. Then, her bloom faded. Canine dementia shadowed my Poppy, she could not see, could no longer hear, and did not understand where she was anymore. She circled endlessly, she bumped into everything, she got stuck behind furniture, behind appliances and lived only to survive.
Then, early this year, another neurological issue cast a darkness in her bleak existence. Her hind legs started to fail; I would find her fallen over, head first, in her water bowl. It was a constant vigil to see where she was, where she had stumbled, or where she had gotten stuck. Then, an April morning, her legs gave out. She could no longer feel them. The vet said it was time……..we all knew it was coming…….My heart had hoped she would live to see another Mother’s Day with me. But……time doesn’t wait for when the time is right………it never is. Whether cancer, dementia……there is never a right time to say goodbye.
I know, I have said goodbye to so many of them. Thirty some years ago, my husband gave me a Mother’s Day gift of another tiny silver poodle, Skippy. He owned my heart until his gave out one day in my yard.
My heart longs for another little furry child. But one realizes time’s passage matters as one grows older……..and caring for a little one is a lifelong commitment, not a piece of trash to be thrown away. Bringing in an old one again means bringing in heartbreak……a little sooner on the time scale.
So today, I think of poppies and memories……….and aches and longings of the heart.