I do little things to remind myself of him, to keep him with me always. I have his infamous snake toy tucked near my computer on my desk at work. I keep one of his eensie t-shirts from Christmas in my necklace drawer. I have his first (camo!) collar snapped onto Maizie's leash handle. The tiny shred of realism in my head tries to tell me that he was just a dog, bad stuff happens, that worse things can (and will) happen, and I need to move on. But the bigger part of me, the true me--the part that's all heart and soul, and devoted dog mama, knows that the mark he made on me will last forever. He was everything you think of when you envision a puppy. The sweetness, the curiosity, the unabashed love that just poured from his wriggly body at every moment. He's been gone for over a month, and the ache is still so resounding, I don't recall how I've ever handled loss before (and yet I know I have, time and again).
I was perusing etsy a few weeks ago and stumbled across an adorable shop of personalized puppy goods... ID tags and the like. I found a fantastic keychain style, and emailed the shop owner to see if she could personalize it with a quote. I loved the idea of having something with me at all times that had his name etched on it. She quickly replied that she'd love to, and we began a series of emails to design my Milo keychain.
The Edith Wharton quote is so eerily spot-on. When he wasn't curled up on my chest, Milo literally laid on my feet--I could feel the warmth and flutter of his little heart on the top of my foot--one of his little habits I instantly loved. He is so, so ridiculously missed. Who knew a few (seemingly typical) months with an 8-pound yorkiepoo would change my life the way they did?
Kiss your puppies (or whatever you've got!) tonight for me. Cradle their faces and look into their big, adoring eyes and make sure they know how much you love them. I'd give my right arm to hold Milo again... to rethread my tennis shoelaces because he pulled them out while I was off at work... to mop up a pool of water by the water bowl because Sloppy Face passed up his manners in favor of chasing his sister across the room.
And if you're in the market for a new ID tag for your pup (or cat!), go visit Melissa's shop. She was just beyond wonderful to work with--so responsive and in tune with what I was requesting, so sensitive to what I've been dealing with. I've ordered a few handstamped items from etsy and hers are the best quality I've seen (Maizie got a new tag too!)--and better yet, she's super reasonable.
You can find her at woo woo workshop... she also tweets at @woowooworkshop. Thank you so, so much for taking the time to see my vision, Melissa!! I love what you made for me!