It’s been nearly three and a half months since Lucy left us. A few weeks ago I announced to my partner that I was ready for a new dog. A puppy. So the puppy can get acquainted with our three cats who have lived with dogs their entire lives (17 years for one of them).
Partner and I had a lovely talk and started picking out names; all girls. Maggie, Sophie, Lady, Honey. I began how I usually do once I’ve made a decision; I proceed in full acceleration mode. Googling purebred websites, searching the humane shelters. Seemed easy enough.
Lucy is still everywhere. Her ashes and animal sympathy card sit on the fireplace mantel. Leash and collar on the counter next to the Christmas globe that D. gave me this past Christmas. (a man and woman dancing while their dog sits, watching) Her toys on top of the chest which used to be next to where her bed once was (which has been sitting in the back of my car since our last car ride to the vet). There are body/oil marks on the walls where she used to lie up against.
Earlier this week, I found a sweet rescue puppy named Lucy and sent for information. The rescue group is diligent in ensuring those who adopt from them are sound folks who are ready and willing and able to take on the responsibility of bringing a four-legged into their lives. I started reading through the questionnaire (at least 30 or 40 questions) and found myself surprised as the tears poured down. Not only was I not ready for this puppy; perusing through all the questions made me realize this wasn’t the way I wanted to open myself and bring a new puppy into our lives.
A few days later, I saw another sweet one. A boy this time. I thought, “Hmm..”. So I came up with some boy names (Cooper, Taylor, Percy, Baily). The response from this rescue let us know he was already taken.
More obsessing/searching. Two, three, four times a day. After all, someone new could have arrived in between my searching?!
Last night and this morning: deep lower back pain. Shoes? Something coming up for looking at and letting go? Bodywork. Osteopathic/rolfing-like/cranial sacral. Thought arises, “childbirth”. The therapist asks, “how was giving birth for you?” Old pain/injury becomes unstuck.
Movements/shiftings/somatic openings. Sitting and waiting to reveal…
After the session I eat and think, “Do things to begin the welcoming process for this new little pup.”
Pet store: new purple collar and leash. Chew toys and a stuffed (un-tear-a-part-able) animal. New stainless steel food and water bowls. Pet gate to keep the little one sequestered in the kitchen whilst training. And, a puppy food I hope they’ll like (after several obsessively filled hours searching on the internet).
Driving home I realized/knew, that “now” it was time to remove Lucy’s bed/blankets and toy from the back of the car.
Removing these things.
From the car.
I cried and said a prayer, “I’m letting you go Lucy. I hope it’s okay now.”
All of the items purchased are in a bag, in the pantry for when the time is right. The blankets have been washed and folded. Lucy’s collar and leash have been put in the cabinet. Her dog tag sits on the tin that holds her ashes and the nametag that says, “Lucy Sherman”.
She’ll be there for some time to come.
~These words deserve their own lines.~
She will always be a part of our family.
And when the time is right.
It will be the right time.
“Do not think that time simply flies away. Do not understand “flying” as the function of time. If time simply flew away, a separation would exist between you and time. So if you understand time as only passing, then you do not understand the time being.
To grasp this truly, every being that exists in the entire world is linked together as moments in time, and at the same time they exist as individual moments of time. Because all moments are the time being, they are your time being.”
-Dogen Zenji, Uji
(as reported in Ruth Ozeki’s, “Tale For the Time Being”)