An Early January Morning

by Bridgette Donahue 2 years ago in dog

The Longest Winter Day

An Early January Morning

Flowers die. Leaves are long gone from the branches they once were hanging from. The days shorter. Nights are colder. This is a memory of a life that ended on an early morning and made it the longest day I had ever lived during winter.

Baby was a chihuahua/terrier mix and she was beautiful. From her big brown eyes to her small and scruffy paws. She was so lovely. She was born into my family along with four other little pups in late October of 2012. She was the runt of the litter so we deemed it fitting to name her Baby. Of all the people in my family, Baby took a liking to me the most. She lived in my room with me. We did everything together and she went anywhere I did.

I didn't even consider her a pet. She was family. She was my little baby and I raised her as such. She was so smart. She quickly learned that she had to go outside if she wanted to do her business, and was only allowed on living room furniture when someone else was seated. She learned my school schedule and would wait at the door for me when I came home. If dogs weren't so damn loyal and wonderful, losing them wouldn't be so painful.

A year went by since the day she was born and we go into January...

Have you ever gotten a gut feeling, or any kind of feeling, when you know something is wrong? I did. I realized too soon what it meant. It was late January and I had woken with a sickening feeling in my heart and stomach. My first instinct was to check the window and look outside.

In the middle of the street, in front of our house, she lay. My neighbors came to us and said a lone driver, the only car on that street, had hit her without stopping or slowing down. My dad brought her inside and the right side of her face was barely bloodied while the left looked as peaceful as ever. My little Baby was dead. I woke my mom with my screaming, only to have her join me.

We removed her collar and buried her where a fruit tree once stood in our backyard. Honestly, that day dragged on forever. It was the most painful day of my life and I would give anything to go back and wake up earlier to save her. I can't recall for how long, but I refused to believe she was dead. So many times I cried and attempted digging her up because I believed we buried her alive while she was unconscious. In the back of my mind, I still believe that. To this day, I blame myself for what happened. To this day, I hope that driver got what he had coming.

That day changed many things for me. I had never had another dog after that. I have cats I would trade to have her back. I feel awful saying it, I love my cats to death, but Baby was there for my most difficult days. I look at other dogs with such bitterness and I hate them for being adorable. I hate that every other dog has the right to live to old age, but my Baby, who was perfect in every way, had to go at just one year old. It's hard, but I am learning to open up to dogs again.

Some people abuse and neglect their pets. Those people don't understand the difference a pet can make in someone's life. Any pet can. Please appreciate your pets while you have them. Never go a day without making it known they are loved.

~For Baby, forever a good girl.

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Bridgette Donahue

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