One year ago tonight I took Bree on her last car ride.
It’s been a long, bad year. Other than that horrible night I’ve not mourned her, pushing everything down deep.. so far down I couldn’t feel anything. Then a week ago I was cleaning the house, listening to music (some of us dinosaurs still have iPods!) and James Taylor’s Never Die Young started. I didn’t notice, until he sang “…take the sky, forsake the moon…”. And I collapsed into a weeping rag. You could have done anything to me at that moment; I was immersed in grief, not reality.
Younghaven’s Take the Sky, a.k.a. ‘Breagha’
Guess you’re really gone. At least I can cry for you now. I will forever miss you and forever look for you everywhere, as if you’re only just out of sight.
Breagha (‘Beautiful’) was not a normal dog. She was people-smart. If one of the little dogs needed to go outside they told her and she told me. They are as lost now as we; Daisy won’t even go to the side yard, sticking as close to the back door as possible. She keeps watching for Bree to come out so she’ll feel safe. Bree was her rock.
I could tell Bree something once or twice and she got it. She knew many, many words. Training was a breeze and though we didn’t keep up with it, she remembered even unto old age. A thinker, sometimes she over-thought things.
She saved my life when the electric blanket I was using started to catch fire, barking at it to alert me.
We started each day with a hug, her ears going back while sidling up to me for the ritual.
After I showered each day and started to blow dry my hair, she would come in the bathroom. I’d turn the dryer on cool and run it over her, saying “Aren’t you a purty girl?” and she’d grin and preen for me.
At first I was heartbroken to see her nowhere and now, still bereft, I see her everywhere. Don’t know what’s worse.
It’s probably the last time I’ll say/write this: Her sire, CH Deep River Bow and Arrow, was the #1 Smooth Collie in the US, all systems, in 2008.
I love this dog. And I will miss her until I die. There was so much more to her, so much she gave us, just loving us and being part of our lives. Suffice it to say that she was a good dog and she will be missed. Goodbye, Big Love.
Now that I’m over the shock of losing Breagha (though stuck in a stultifying haze; I dropped my house key somewhere between here and the grocery store. How?!) all the funny things she used to do are coming back.
She loved this chair, but always looked so awkward on it. Possibly the only time she looked so, as she had a natural grace. Bree never even went through that gangly puppy phase.
The chair fell apart and we removed it to the curb. She was not happy, taking up residence in “the comfy chair” for the duration.
Well, I’ll start at the beginning. Himself and I are flying to Houston next month to (finally) meet my father. Yes, when I drag something out it gets drug to the limit. Our meeting simply cannot wait any longer, so the plane tickets are booked.
Since we’re unaccustomed to being gone, a trip means about 5,000 different little things need to happen before we leave… among them dog boarding. I figured the best place for boarding my three angels (I’ll let you stop laughing before I go on) would be in someone’s home instead of a kennel, so I set up a Meet n Greet with my selected dog sitters from ROVER dot com for today.
My chosen sitters were two ladies with a great reputation who seemed very nice. Bonus: they only live a few miles away! So, we loaded the girls up, Bree riding with Mike in the Mini and the littles with me in the truck.
When we arrived one of the ladies met us outside and showed us back to the back yard… where there is a pool. To be fair, I knew they had a pool, but assumed (don’t say it!) they’d have a safety fence around it. They did not.
I declined to have the six large barking dogs in the house come out to meet us (!) because for one I don’t know them and two, my dogs were stressed just leaving the house. They never get to go anywhere, poor things.
Would you like to know who fell in the pool first? Yes, it was my elderly Collie, replete with cataracts. She hobbled around and there was no way she wasn’t falling in… fortunately it was near the steps so we got her out without incident. That was followed by Daisy, who couldn’t swim if the debbil himself was chasing her! I let out a high pitched squeal and went in to get her.
Then Bree fell into the deep end and Mike had to dive in to save her! To her credit she can swim, but her limbs aren’t strong enough to extricate that body anymore. That’s when I started cursing. Stress does that to me, like some people come out in hives.
Badger was surprisingly smart enough to stay clear of the water. She was too busy marking all the other dog’s pee spots.
Bree will stay at the Vet’s, Badger at a ‘Spa’ and Daisy? She’s coming with me.