Photo by A.Szabo
Noll: Why She Loves Us
Nurturing is learned. It is a truth. Blessed are they who receive unconditional love; especially children and pets. For the nurtured grow up to love unconditionally. They seek, find and hold onto God's creatures. They love long after their loved one is gone.
My Own was not yet 3 when Spotty became family. From the onset, Spotty owned her heart. He was her first love.
Things to remember: Mild-mannered, gregarious, Spotty loved to roam the fields of Maple Ridge. For him, happiness knew no bounds like a fragrant field full of birds, mice, and rabbits or a long lap from the creek. For her, gathering flowers in his safe company made the sun shine brighter.
On more than one occassion, Spotty's wagging tail stung like a whip. Such was his joy. One chase and one encounter with a car was lesson learned. He helped hunt Easter eggs. He played tireless ball. He patiently waited under the patio table during midsummers eve dinners. For watermelon rind, he would slobber uncontrollably.
Sometimes, when sister and brother went off to play, My Own lingered. Sitting on the brick flower box, she stroked the car scar above his eye, touched his soft ears. Her companion when no playmates were around. A confident who liked nothing more than to have his ears lifted and whispered into; especially the one with the little white spot on the underside. A patient friend who wanted nothing more than a pat on the head and a biscuit, please.
Spotty was a good dog. His legacy unending.
My Own's Brother: In adulthood, he searched for a Dalmatian. The love he shared with Spotty, he later shared with Spot. It was unchanged and unconditional. Brother relived his childhood. In the fields of Maine, Spot romped at his side and Spotty tagged along in his heart.
My Own's Sister: In the gentle chamber of her heart, Spotty's love dwells. It has transformed sister's rustic home into a haven for homeless cats, rescue dogs, horses. Ducks, geese, a goat, rabbits all have passed through and found the limitless nurture in her soul.
Spotty was 12 when the tumor undid him. Refusing to eat. To drink. My Own whispered "Please, Spotty," into the ear with the little white spot. His brown eyes responded with love. But he broke her heart, nonetheless.
This is why she loves us. The truth is black and white. It is Spotty: the dog who opened her heart to love, to lose, and to do it all over again.