Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Our Hero has Fur

Surprisingly, the dogs slept quietly all night.  Nikita did make a small mess.  No one had stepped in it so it was easily cleaned.  They poured out the door this morning to frolic in frigid freedom.  

It's supposed to warm up today.  Good.  I have to work so I can't let them in and out all day.  I worry about my poor old grand dame a lot.  We just can't seem to get any weight on her, and that lack of insulation makes the effects of cold weather that much worse.  Hopefully she'll snuggle up in the dog house.  I understand why she doesn't, though.  She's our sentinel, our guardian, and she doesn't want to give up her job.  Sometimes I wish I could tell her that we'll be all right, that she can relax, but I'm glad I don't have the opportunity.  If I gave in to temptation, how awful would it be if she decided that she'd been useless, or is useless, to us?  She isn't.  She's still our best watch dog, our most loyal friend.  I do think she could use a vacation, though.  As far as retirement, though--I couldn't see her retiring.  She's too defined by what she does, and I don't think anything we'd do could change that, even if we wanted to.  Nikita is the one who watches from the porch, who gets up and barks at strangers no matter how painfully stiff she is, who lets the garbage man know that he won't take our stuff from us without a fight, and who lets our across the street neighbor Chuck know that when he gets his mail, she's keeping an eye on him in case he decides to do something shady.

I do sometimes wish she had a softer life, or that we could give her a softer life without making her unbearably anxious.  I guess we could try, but I'd have to examine the deeper reasons and whether that would honestly be good for her.  She's a warrior, a brave spirit, a fine soldier and all the softness she's ever enjoyed was the touch of our hands and a proud word, letting her know that we appreciate what a good girl she is, and that she's loved.  If I could I might try to tell her how amazing she is, but I doubt she'd believe me.  Like Rory, I think she believes what she does is what must be done, and to do any less is unthinkable, therefore, what she does is ordinary.  Doing less would be to become less, to fail to do the minimum, to unmake who she is.

3 comments:

Carissa said...

I love how you described her towards the end of this entry. The language is so powerful and moving. And fitting, knowing her as I've come to over the years.

Simply beautiful.

Carissa said...

Oh, and, I just tagged you for a blog game! The details are at Writer in the Trenches

Come over and play if you have the chance!

Kami said...

Thanks! (blush)

Nikita stayed inside again last night, though the rest of the sea of unconditional loved stayed out. It was quite a bit warmer but she still adamantly refused to sleep in the doghouse, so I made her come in. This morning she was so relaxed and deep in sleep it was difficult to tell that she was still breathing. Maybe we'll just do this for a while, see how it feels.