Wednesday, April 15, 2009

The One Friend Marge Never Got to Meet

So I decided I'd try to get all of my tears over with tonight, on the eve of the two-year anniversary of Taco's death, rather than waste a beautiful sunny day being upset about it tomorrow.

Just a few years ago, that guy was my life.  No words can convey how much that horse meant to me.. and still DOES mean to me.  My entire teen-hood saw long Saturdays cleaning that old boy up, taking him for walks down the road, and sitting with him for hours on end in a state of perfect serenity.

He was taken away from me after six years of our friendship on a horrible, rainy April weekend in 2007.  The painful look in his eyes that last time I ever saw him will never, ever leave me.  

He was around forty when he went, impressive for a horse.  He lived most of  his life not being used for much, which was strikingly apparent when I took notice of him.  I gave Taco a dignified end to his life, as the most faithful companion I probably will ever have, and that is what means most to me.

Sometimes it really feels like yesterday.  

I've taken comfort in Marge and Layla, because although Taco taught me so many lessons during my time with him, perhaps the most important one was to appreciate what you've got while you've got it.  Layla's sitting in my lap, purring.. she always knows when I'm upset.  Marge has popped by a couple of times, too, with a tail wag and a face lick.  I gave them both hugs and let them split a treat .. yeah, my cat LOVES Nature's Recipe dog training treats.

All I can hope for is that Taco is in a better place, free of the pain he felt at the end of his life, and that someday the two of us will be reunited, some way, some how, and we'll get to spend those weekends with each other again.

The sun always seems to shine on April 16th.  I used to find it cruelly coincidental, since that weekend in 2007 was so rainy and dreary, but maybe it's Taco's way of telling me to get out and have fun with my life.  Last year, I was prepared to mope around, but then decided that volunteering at the shelter would be a better use of my time.  This year, I hope to go to the park and have a great day with Marge.  (Be prepared for pictures and an upbeat post tomorrow.) 

All the while he'll be on my mind, as I think to myself how lucky I am to have ever had such an extraordinary bond with that old boy.

For more information about Taco, visit his memorial.


Life With Dogs April 15, 2009 at 10:38 PM  

I am not good with loss, so this gets me. But as you said, you were a friend to the end, and that is all any of us may hope for when the time comes.

You should be proud, and celebrate the day that Taco found his greener pasture.

Roxanne @ Champion of My Heart April 16, 2009 at 5:53 PM  

I'm so sorry for your loss then and for the toll it continues to take. It's unfortunately the price we pay for the love we share with our animal friends.

NCmountainwoman April 16, 2009 at 9:59 PM  

I had a Springer Spaniel who was the light of my life. The perfect dog for that time of my life. She lived for 16 years and I still think of her often.

You gave Taco some wonderful years and a dignified end of life. We can't ask for more than that.

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