The weather report promised that today (Friday) would be a beautiful day here in southeastern North Carolina. It was to be sunny with temps in the low 70s after a whole week of ugly, cloudy and cool weather. I thought on Friday I would actually go outside and sit on my swing like I’ve always liked to do and just enjoy the outdoors.
So here it is, that Friday that was so wonderfully advertised, was in fact, what they said it would be. I usually stay cooped up in the house since Kaitlyn died with the exception of sometimes going out with my oldest daughter to do things, groceries, mom’s, etc. So I knew I had to go out there, it would do me good, though I knew of so many reasons why it may not do me good, I took the chance anyway.
I went out there and I saw the only remaining functional thing that I had left that was our dog’s that we had not given away yet. Savannah was our chocolate Labrador retriever that was almost 5 years old and we loved her so much. She had an invisible underground fence that worked really well until she met this bulldog that wondered into our yard and then she felt compelled to break free, even with the shock of escape, to go gallivanting with this dog. She was spayed but, she was so social I guess she wanted to play with a friend. She was hit and killed by a car 1-19-14 on Kaitlyn’s birthday.
So we gave away the 4 cases of canned dog food we had just bought, her collars we had that had not been used yet, the physical fence where her doghouse was, (we kept the door open) and other things to my sister. But I was going to give my oldest daughter Stephanie the Dogloo Dog house. It’s just not made its way there yet.
I went out there and there it sat. I looked in and inside was still the hay she laid on that still held the shape of her body. I put my hand inside and felt the areas that she laid every night for 5 years.
Then I walked over to the far edge of our yard where she was buried and I put the toy she loved for years (the only toy in the world that she could not destroy) that we played fetch with twice a day, and put it back in the upright position between two stones and I sat there and cried like a baby.
My birdfeeders had just run out of seed, so I went to get my bucket of seed. In the garage where the seed is kept, remains the pot of flowers that I had bought for Kaitlyn for her room the last time she came home for Easter last year just before she died. They are all dead of course, but I just can’t throw them away. Close by is her cat carrier with the little cute towel and a cloth of some type that she put in there for her cat, just like she left it. Then I walked back outside and filled the feeders up, then I sat on the swing. I looked to my left and in my mind I saw my beautiful dog sitting there on the swing with me as she often did once she was tired (which didn’t last long) and I remembered her beautiful brown coat, her brown nose, her velvety snout, her silky ears and the way her fur felt when I rubbed her. I remembered the way she used to do her mouth and make that little noise that is difficult to explain when she got so sleepy when being petted.
I looked up at the roof on our house and remembered 21 years ago when I had just graduated nursing school and we had a new roof put on. My life was wide open with a wonderful career I had worked so hard for right before me. I think of all the years since that time and wondered whether my nursing career turned out to be what I thought it would be and I knew my answer. I also realized it’s time to re-roof our house.
I looked in the backyard and in my mind I saw my 2 small daughters’ swing set complete with sliding board. I see the little brown headed girl and the bright blonde headed girl swinging and playing and having the best of times. I remember the little kiddie pool we had with the little slide built in and the fun they had in it as I sat outside with my cassette player playing Miriah Carey. I see Kaitlyn with our multitude of outdoor cats and kittens that had accumulated in our yard over the years and remember how she had named each one. No ordinary names either because Kaitlyn did nothing that was ordinary. I remember she expected me to remember all their names as well, just as she did.
I see my two girls playing in the yard and I thank God that I did not know what would happen to my youngest blonde headed girl. But then I think if I knew what could have happened, maybe I could have prevented it somehow.
I saw my girls running around, mostly in pigtails or ponytails and I watched my Kaitlyn disappear.
I go back into the house because I had enough of spring and the thought of it not doing me any good happened to be right. I watched my Kaitlyn disappear. I can watch her disappear inside my house just as well as outside… so I walk back in.