Thursday, February 26, 2009

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The phone rang this morning a bit earlier than normal. It was mom.

"what time do you work today? Are you off?" she asked. I could hear the choked back tears. She had that voice you can only get from crying for a few days.

"I work at 1 today."

"can you come over and help me?"

Back in 1996, my youngest brother saw an ad in the paper for puppies. My mom has always told us no to a dog since I could remember.

She decided to humor us and take us out to a little house in Amherst to see the dogs. At this point my mom was going to take us out there and we were going to see the dog. She never was serious about actually taking the dog home with us.

We pulled into a little country home where a middle aged man met us. It was March in Ohio so the temperature was on the low side. His garage was enough sanctuary from the cold.

As we entered the garage there was this tiny little puppy. Black, clumsy, and full of energy. My brothers and I took turns petting her. We were full of puppy slober when my mom said to be careful.

It wasn't until my mom picked her up, when the puppy snuggles into my mom's neckline of her coat. The little kiss from a puppy on her ear sealed the deal. This puppy was coming home with us.

In the car we were struggling with a name for her. Nothing seemed to suit her. Out of the backseat came the name Sadie. Her ears perked up. That was it then. Sadie.

We lived next door to my grandparents back then, and mom lives next door to this day. We didn't want grandpa to know because he would definately yell at us for getting her. Mom was a grown woman, but that fear of Dad never goes away.

It was about 2 days into Sadie's crate training when Grandpa came over and took Sadie to his house. Everyone was at school and mom was at work, and he was home. There was no reason she needed to be locked up.

From that day on, Grandpa and Sadie were great friends. She would go over to Grandpa's with me everyday and have breakfast. She would then spend her days with Grandpa. She did everything with him. He was always in the yard, and there she was alway two steps behind him. They had a special bond. My Grandpa's leg was the only leg she would hump. In the evenings my Mom would come get Sadie after work, everyday.

Sadie would come with Mom to marching band practices and we would take her for ice cream after. Sadie was as much a child in this family as we were. She was protective of her family and she was always there.

When Grandpa called the paramedics for Grandma when she was having a heart attack, Grandpa was holding Sadie on the floor as the paramedics were working on Grandma. Sadie was just about as scared as Grandpa was I'm sure, and there they were, on the floor, Sadie barking like mad, and Grandpa trying to comfort her.

Sadie was probably trying to tell the paramedics about Grandpa, because as soon as the paramedics left, Grandpa had a massive heart attack himself. He died 8 hours later.

Sadie wouldn't go in Grandpa's house for a few months. After Grandma got better and came home, Sadie would go over there and sit in the middle of the living room where she and Grandpa had their fun, and also where she last saw Grandpa alive, and she would just howl. She never wanted to stay more than a half hour.

Sadie has been there. Every family function. She was there when Steve moved away to San Antonio. She was there when I left for St. Louis. She was also there with her tail wagging when we came home. When Grandpa died she was the one person in the family we were worrying about.

The neighbors would stop and say hello to her quite a bit. The neighbor on the otherside of Mom used to take her for walks all the time, once we all moved out and started our own families.

Sadie has been there for 2 high school graduations, 3 grandchildren births, 2 marriages, 1 divorce.

Sadie was loved by everyone in the family.

So when Mom called and asked for my help, it was my duty to be there. Work could wait. Laundry could wait. Sadie was always there for me, I needed to be there for her.

The drive to the vet was enough to kill a person. My Mom walked her into the vet. Sadie's breathing was labored and every step seemed to take all of her strength .

In the end, mom was on the floor comforting Sadie as she went to sleep for the last time.

Sadie slipped her Earthly bonds and is now with Grandpa.

We will miss you.

Sadie was born on February 15, 1996, and died on February 26, 2009.

13 years of joy. 13 years of memories.

This is the last photo ever taken of Sadie, this morning just before he last ride. She is where she loved to sleep. On her bed between Mom's room and the bathroom. It was the cross roads of the house.

5 comments:

tangobaby said...

Adam, I'm so sorry to hear about Sadie. The best friends in the world are the four-legged ones, and I know she can't be replaced but you'll always have wonderful memories to help when you miss her.

Hugs to you and your mom.

Starlene said...

Your tale left tears in my eyes. How lucky you all are to have had such a companion. She sounds amazing and even the photo of her in her last hours shows her to be beautiful with uncommonly intelligent eyes. Thank you for sharing even though it was probably difficult. You and your mom will be in my thoughts.

~K said...

Rest in Peace Sadie, I love dogs and I am a dog person, so I completely understand how attached we become to these critters. Sorry for your loss!

It's Just Me said...

Oh man.... I cried so hard when my dog died. In fact I cried for days. sigh... I am sorry

photo19 said...

Adam, I know I'm 2 weeks late with this but this really made me cry. Hope you & your family are okay - I know my kids would be so devastated if my Mum's dog died and I wouldn't stop crying for days (she's 11 now) Really sorry for your loss xx