You may have noticed the addition of a new page to the top of my blog. For new readers who may not know, contained on that page is the story of Taco, the compilation of a 6-part series of posts that I wrote earlier this year. It's a bit long, but I regard it as some of my best, most personal writing.
Saturday morning, I awoke from a nightmare. In my dreams, I was back in April of 2007, reliving the painful weekend that Taco died. As dreams usually are, the details were fuzzy, but the emotion was all too real. During the first few waking hours of my day and even in to that evening, it felt almost as though he had died just the day before, rather than 3 1/2 years ago.
I feel better now, but I'm still bewildered. I have no idea where the dream came from. I haven't been thinking about him any more than I usually do. I've been having recurring dreams literally for years about horses, due to several unresolved conflicts that led to my departure from the horse world, but never anything like this.
I have fortunately not suffered a lot of loss in my 20-year life. Taco's death was the first, and it was probably the hardest on me. As a 17 year old, I was in counseling for about 6 months afterwards because the intense anxiety and grief that kept creeping up on me. It took me a long, long time to even begin to accept things.
It all comes down to the fact that I really have not moved on. I probably never will. I still catch myself thinking very critically about the circumstances surrounding Taco's death; there are so many "what ifs" in my mind. I acknowledge how difficult it would have been to care for him through my college career, and also acknowledge that I likely wouldn't have found Marge if he were still alive. But, the thoughts still remain, and I wish I could spend some time with him again, just see him once more.
I still have his owner's phone number, and actually spoke to him earlier this year. He's a nice man, a religious, generous, 70-something ex-firefighter. He and his wife both like me very much - they've even sent me Christmas gifts for the past three years. I want to talk about the three decades of Taco's life that preceded my involvement with him. I would love to spend some time with them both, maybe grab some lunch at a diner or something. We spoke about meeting up, way back in 2007, but the plans never came in to fruition. I don't know whether to call him up and invite him out, or to leave it alone. I'm trying to hold on to bits and pieces of something that's been gone for a long time, trying to keep Taco alive by learning more about him and continuing to discussing him.
One of these days, I might just have to suck it up and dial the phone.