I miss him too

On the day his heart began to beat, you swore to protect him.
You were vigilant. You never let me leave your sight.
You gently pulled at my body and made me sit down, when you saw I was working too hard.
When strangers got too close, you told them to back away.
You laid your head on my belly and listened to his heartbeat every night.

One day, I came home without him.

I called your name. You stared at me with big brown eyes and refused to come to me. I called you again, tears streaming down my face. Instead of running to me, you backed away. You laid down on the ground and continue to stare at me with sad eyes.

It's okay, I miss him too.

For a week, you stayed your distance. You watched me from afar, never coming near me. When I tried to reach out to you, you withdrew.

It's okay, I need space sometimes too.

You stopped sleeping through the night like you used to. Sometimes you'd whimper. Other times, you'd wake up growling and barking, as if you had awoken from a nightmare.

It's okay, I cry at night too.

You used to eat your food with such enthusiasm. Now you barely pick at your dinner before I coax you to eat the rest.

It's okay, my appetite isn't what it once was either.

One day, you came to me with sad eyes and laid your head on my empty belly. As I laid on the floor, you laid your body over mine to shield me from the sadness. On that day, you swore to protect me. You are vigilant. You never let me leave your sight. My little shadow was back.

It's okay, girl. I miss him too.

*A horribly corny (yet heartfelt) letter to my dog, Dakota, who protected our son Ethan with her life. 


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