Sunday, July 3, 2011

JUST SHADE AND I

It's the 3rd already.  Douglas has been gone two days.  I still refuse to believe it.  I put Shade in the truck, with her window "half" down, and drove to the old abandoned park.  She practically sat on top of me.

She now gets to ride in the front seat with me.  It was strange looking to my right and seeing a black dog where once my beautiful golden boy sat.  I forced the tears back.  When I opened the door of the truck to let her out; she calmly stepped down to the ground.  She normally bolts headlong into the tall grass or runs to the tree line.  But, not today. 
We started walking and I noticed she stayed with me on the old road.  She does miss him.  Her guiding beacon is no longer present.  There is no partner for her to set a pace with.  The old road that goes into the lake is very familiar.  Ahead is the curve to the left where Douglas would always disappear.  I would feel the beginnings of a worry starting when he did this.  Then he would appear and stand looking at me, just to be sure I was coming.  He never would get too far ahead of me.  It is a hot day and I probably should not have brought her out here.  We are walking under trees and I'm taking her to the lake where she can cool off.

She seems lost.  There is a definite difference in her actions.  It appears she is direction less.

She doesn't play and splash.  She doesn't run through the water chasing after----Douglas.  She sits quietly.  She has lost her best friend.  It is evident.  I will try to pull her out of this.  Listen to me talk.
I threw a stick out into the water and told her to get it.  She got up and lazily moved to the stick but didn't pick it up.  Then she came back and sat quietly in the water.
We'll walk down to where the road touches the water and try again.  Oh, there are a lot of memories here.  That blow down where Douglas fell and frightened me so badly still protrudes out from the cliff.  I wish it would fall into the water and float away.


The blow down Douglas fell from

She is listless and has no motivation, it seems.  There's no one to beat to the floating stick.  Douglas and Shade used to retrieve the sticks together, one on each end.  They both found great joy racing each other to the stick I would throw for them.  She just doesn't seem interested.

She realizes the enormous change in things.  I doubt she can understand that she and I are alone now without Douglas.  Douglas was the impetus for everything.  Everyone else just followed his lead.  Even me...
We walked up to the ruins area and I sat down.  Unbelievably, Shad sat down also.  This is a first.  She usually inspects every surrounding fence line and brush pile.  But, not today.  She sits facing the old road and watches as if to see her old friend appear prancing up the hill.
I pour water for her but she will not drink.  She only watches the road.  Usually she is the first one to the ruins when we return from the lake and Douglas comes along at his own pace about fifteen minutes later.  Shade would then charge down to cut him off and entice Douglas to go with her into the tall grass of the meadow where the rabbits are.  But, Douglas does not come.  And, she waits and watches....

She Appears Lost.  She watches for her friend
It is hot and I need to get Shade out of here and back into the coolness of the habitat.  I thought we might have some fun and the pressure of the loss would be diminished but, it isn't so.  It worsens the hurt.  The place is too familiar.  There is a spot where I watched my little boy dig in just over to my right.  It's still there.  I can see him digging excitedly even now.  How I wish I could see those big golden paws with the feather hair all around them.  They were beautiful.  He was beautiful.  So beautiful!
"Come on Shade;  lets go."
"Come Shade!  Lets go.  Come on Darlin."

She gets up and turns toward the old road for one last look.  Douglas isn't there.  I'm amazed by this..
 Through tears and a quivering voice I call her to come on and she does.  We both walk out of the ruins area together, slowly up the old road toward the truck.  It's a lonely walk without---him.

We miss you, our golden son.