The Missing Bits
There’s a kind of hush all over the house like a great gaping hole has filled with the absence of you. You came to me as a warm wriggling ball that squeezed into the palm of my hand. You fitted me. Always. Our time was too short, too quick and life tossed too many things your way. Cruel things. Things you took in your stride. But you were always like that. The strong one. The brave one. The one who laughed at everything no matter what. And already I miss you though you have barely been gone a day.
I miss waking up next to you.
I miss hearing you snore.
I miss the clack of your toenails against the floor. There are demons inside me, battering away, beating me up. Not letting me off the hook. I feel like I have betrayed you. Took you before you were ready to go. But I couldn’t let you struggle in pain. Despite the fact you were willing to carry on just the same.
In this well of sadness inside me I feel I could possibly drown. Nothing feels right without you. The memories link me back to the life that we shared. Remembering the way you used to stand at the keyboard, your paws on the space bar. My own budding novelist, back in the days when you could still jump. I miss the way you romp through the house on your unsteady legs. I miss finding dead moths and half chewed pegs.
I miss the squeaky farts you did against the polished floor. I miss how you stole Little Dog’s toys with the swipe of a paw.
I miss hugging you. Because you fitted me. Always.
I miss the greatness of your presence that filled the space of this house.
I miss how the house used to feel before.
I miss the sound of your tail banging as I open the door.
I miss your dribbly nose. I miss the press of you against me at night. I miss your head on my foot as I type.
Last night as I lay awake through a quiet, lonely night, I saw you again. You were fit and well and running free. And you were smiling that smile that you had just for me.
Yesterday, when I held you in my arms that last time, and you drifted away, I think you took a little piece of me with you. I can feel it today.
Moo and I went to the sea after you left. And the first dog we saw was a Cav, like you, bouncing along the beach – the way you should have been able to. And then later, an eagle soared overhead and I pretended it was you, unfettered, and free. The way you should be. And I know that in time the memory of your wagging tail whipping buttery love through the air will finally wipe out my demons. And the image of your wide smiling face will replace all the hurt and fill in the hole. And somehow through the grief I will find my way back to our happiness, with you tucked up inside me. Because you fitted me. Always.
Run, baby boy. All the way home.