A Bit of Honey
How a Loss Became a Win
I was never really much of a dog person growing up. It was not because I did not like them, just that I gravitated towards cats more. It was not until meeting a certain brindled beauty that I gained a new appreciation for them. So starts the story of how I met the love of my life.
A few years ago, I became a foster. When the email discussing a potential pup was received, I made my way to the rescue. After arriving, I was greeted in the lobby, where they have most of their enclosures, full of pups waiting to be loved. However, I was told they had a special case for me, if I thought I could handle it, and I was then led to a room separate from the lobby.
Upon entering the room, I was met with excitement from one of the most beautiful dogs I had ever seen, her brindle coat striking against the lightly colored beige walls. She walked up to me with a rope toy in her mouth, already ready to play. She did not seem scared or nervous at all, greeting me like I was no stranger. The rescue did not have an actual name for her at the time, so they said I could name her whatever I wanted. She had only been there for an hour before I got there, and they had hardly any information on her. They only knew that she had sustained an injury to one of her back legs, as her hip had been broken at some point, but being that it was never reset, it healed in the spot it broke. It caused her hip to be positioned more upwards on her body, which led to her leg deteriorating. The rescue made sure I was prepared to take on such a case, as she would need care for months before she could be cleared for adoption. Soon after, we were on our way home.
After getting settled in the car, I turned back to look at her in the backseat. Sunshine illuminated her face and colors, and I was in awe. I took one look at her golden brown eyes and thought, "Honey," as the light danced upon her, showcasing all her beauty. Thus, she had a name.
After entering the house for the first time, Honey moved from room to room, investigating and learning of her new surroundings. It did not take her long to get comfortable and feel at home. She had unlimited energy and wanted to play pretty much all of the time. If she wasn't sleeping or eating, she was finding a toy to bring me.
Despite her love of playing and getting endless attention, I could tell the damage from her hip was causing her pain. She would curl up in a small ball and hold her head on her leg, sometimes sucking on it. She would only be able to play for a short period of time before I would watch her curl in on herself.
Soon, though, came the decision by the rescue to either try to save her leg or remove it. Further examinations revealed damage they had not anticipated. Where they connected, her bones were grinding against each other, which caused her to lose muscle in her leg, allowing little use of it. They determined the damage was too much, so they made an appointment for amputation.
The casualty was even worse than predicted. After her leg was removed, I was told they had to go in further than they thought they would, leaving her with a gnarly scar. I was informed that the healing process could take months.
The night of, after getting back home, she was still heavily under the influence of sedation. She would come to and sing out cries I had never before heard, as she realized her leg was no longer there, before falling back asleep. Those cries are forever burned in my brain, knowing she was scared and uncertain of the situation. This continued for the duration of the night into the next morning, when the sedation finally subsided, and she was able to process more of what had happened. I had to monitor her movements and ensure she didn't do anything to risk reopening her wound.
Honey had to learn how to navigate her new life with only three legs, and she adjusted so quickly that it seemed as if she had been living without a fourth from the start. Once she realized she could move without that pain holding her back, she moved. She commanded every room of the house, but I soon discovered her real element was the outdoors.
When I let her into the backyard to run and play for the first time since her scar healed, one of the most beautiful moments with her was painted in time. Honey was able to really run, and run she did. She was no longer going to be kept in one place. Her face wore the biggest smile I had seen since meeting her, and I fell in love all over again. She was unrestrained, finally free, and ran wild with reckless abandon. It was the first time she got to be her true self, and it was beautiful. Of course, I could not hold back tears, as I watched her come alive in a new way, and nothing was going to stop her now.
After she had fully healed and was cleared for adoption, I had made the decision to make it official. I had no intentions of adopting her myself when I started the journey with her, but my love for her grew and grew, and I found myself becoming more attached to her. She brought a light to my life where only darkness had lived, and I knew she was meant to remain a part of it.
About the Creator
My name is Sierra. Writing is a type of therapy that allows me to express myself or the world around me in ways one-on-one conversations cannot. I hope you enjoy my works!
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