Nostalgia

Once upon a time, there was a Mommy who had three little girls: an Oldest, a Middle one, and the Youngest.

Blackie

Blackie

When the girls were little, they all loved dogs. They played with their uncle’s dog, Zach; they babysat their friend’s dog, Blackie. And when Blackie stayed with them, they would spend time at the dog park.

The girls loved the dog park. They played with Princess, the golden retriever, who would trot over the minute she spotted them. They petted Dante the Italian greyhound, and marvelled at his tiny agility. And there was Morris, who could jump higher than your head, and loved to romp with the girls.

But the Middle one was the one most in love with dogs. She was most overjoyed when Blackie came, and begged hardest for a dog of their own. Finally, when she was 8, the family started to foster dogs. First came Cookie, then Bernita, then the fiasco of Cocoa and Caramel. Just as the family was ready to give up on fostering, along came Our Best Friend, who joined the family forever. And they should have lived happily ever after.

Cookie

Cookie

Dante

Dante

But life never freezes in its moment of perfection. The girls’ mommy and daddy divorced. Princess and Dante both crossed the Rainbow Bridge, and Morris went to live in another city. Trips to the dog park became a rare occurrence, rather than a common outing. Eventually, the older two girls stopped wanting to go to the dog park altogether.

Their enthusiasm for dog ownership waned as well. The Middle Child, who for a number of years had begged for a second dog, decided that one was more than enough. Taking him out was a chore akin to cleaning the toilet– only worse, because in winter you have to put on your parka and boots. They still loved him, they called him “the softest” and “the lovi-est,” but they no longer wanted to have their own dogs one day. The Youngest became the only one who still couldn’t imagine life without a dog.

* * * * *

At the park last week, I saw a girl who looked about 11 years old. She walked among a group of dogs, patting each one, and when Our Best Friend trotted by, she patted him too. He stopped and wagged his tail, and she crouched down in front of him to scratch his ears. My heart ached a little, remembering my older girls at that age. and who are now too old and too cool for this any more. I hope the Youngest keeps that innocence a few more years.

sketch

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About one person's view

I'm the mother of three girls, three cats, and a dog. All need constant attention, but only the dog likes to go for long walks!
This entry was posted in children, dog parks, Dogs, pets and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

10 Responses to Nostalgia

  1. Print this post out and keep it somewhere safe so you have it no matter what happens. Take it out in 20 years. I bet at least 2 of your 3 girls will have dogs.

  2. Mel says:

    Bittersweet. I hope they get their love of dogs again when they are older. I cannot imagine never wanting a dog in my life after having several. I totally get the melancholy moment.

  3. chocolateducky says:

    Love this entry.

  4. Jodi says:

    It would make me sad too. Heck it’s making me sad now. 😦 I wasn’t the best dog mom when our kids were younger, despite that all three of my girls love cats. But I don’t think any of them have the passion for dogs that I do. Yes, it makes me sad.

  5. DZ Dogs says:

    I love your writing style! 🙂

  6. Dogalot says:

    Also really love the way you write. Kids grow and change and like somethingwagging says some day all of them might come back to loving dog ownership.

  7. Kirsten says:

    Beautiful post. No matter how your kids end up feeling about dogs as adults, it is wonderful that they had those early formative experiences with them and especially that you exposed them to fostering. Who knows what vistas of compassion and connection you opened up for them.

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