Time passes on.
One year ago today, we said good-bye to our buddy, Pez.
Almost every night since that day, I turned on the back porch light. Initially, I flipped the switch out of habit. Then I continued hoping that our sad reality wasn't true. A few months later that light burned out. I lowered my head, but refused to replace the bulb.
It took a while for us to get back to a groove. After work, we were greeted by a cold, dark home. In the mornings, no one reminded us of the biker coming up the street, or the urgent need to be let out. Late nights were quiet - no sounds of snoring.
Over time, I found my smile again when picking up uneaten rice from the floor, or my need to vacuum up the little bits of snacks the girls left behind on the carpet. I didn't realize how much you cleaned up after everyone. It's been an eye opener.
Ava was very sad that you weren't around for her 5th birthday, but we know that the hustle and bustle of the day would have been exhausting for you. She has grown fond of a stuff animal resembling your breed; she even has a larger stuffed dog that looks like your mamma. Occasionally at bedtime, Ava wonders what you're doing; I can't help but tear up as I tuck her in for the night.
Oddly, you never were a fan of water, but I knew you'd get a kick out of watching your younger sisters playing in the kiddie pool or in the sprinkler during the heat waves we had this summer. It makes me sad that you weren't able to run around with the girls. I know you would have treated them so well. My gentle giant.
I still find an occasional hair - something I used to bitch about. Now, I just hold it in my hand. I hate letting go of that physical presence. Tucked away in my closet, I have the outfit I wore when we last hugged - unwashed and untouched. Perhaps it will stay there for one more year.
It's snowing now. One of the last things you did at home was play in the snow. I loved the way you'd push your long snout into a pile of white fluff. It's coming down pretty hard. Wonder if this is a sign from you.
We still think about you buddy.
I miss you a lot...some days more than others.