You don’t know.
You don’t know how I prayed earnestly for you for seven months before I got you. That I prayed specifically for a birthday puppy and got you the day before I turned another year older–a true answered prayer. You don’t know how scared I was to be a first-time dog owner or how nervous I was to mess up. You don’t know the way I panicked that first week together–when I accidentally stepped on your tiny paw, when you wouldn’t eat, when you shook in fear at the vet.
You’ll never know the joy your tiny 2.5 pound puppy frame brought me when I was crying in shock that day in December. You’ll won’t remember how you curled up in my lap and slept when I wondered if I would be able to pay the bills, then jobless, just 6 months after moving across the country.
It’s lost on you the way you somehow knew I was hurting in early January and became my little shadow–even sleeping on the bathmat when I showered, waiting for me to get out so you could lick the water off my toes (something I never quite embraced).
When I became very, very sick, it was you who laid by me in bed, cuddled up next to me until I was well again. But you won’t remember that.
You can’t know how long days at work or difficult conversations or sadness and pain and anger and frustration all boil down to me desperately wanting to take you on a long walk and cuddle up as we watch silly TV shows or how belly rubs and puppy kisses make everything better.
You probably don’t understand why I call you dozens of different nicknames every single day or why I always ask you questions in a high-pitched voice so that you’ll cock your head to the right and melt my heart on the spot.
You’ll never know how every single petsitter who’s watched you has commented on how sweet and gentle you are–or how they’ve all laughed that you’ve won over their older dogs with your relentless puppy energy.
Your un-opposable paw-thumbs can’t understand how I need to get a phone with more memory because I have literally thousands of photos of you and refuse to delete them because you’re my baby and I just can’t.
I don’t think you comprehend the joy that shakes my soul when you pick out one of your stuffed animals for the night and bring it into my bed, snuggle up, and fall asleep with quiet little snores. Or how much more soundly I sleep now not being alone in my apartment, but having your sweet frame cuddled up next to mine.
Charley Bear, you won’t be with me forever. I knew that when I got you. But you’re with me for now and you bring wild laughter and joy, patience, and an outlet for my ever-raging motherly instincts. Thank God for the way He shows his never-ending, never-changing love through your four paws and tiny beating heart. I love you so much my Piddles! You turned this former “I’m not a dog lover” into a “let me show you twelve pictures of my dog” person.
Endless belly rubs,
The human who calls herself your mom