Monday, June 16, 2008

He Still Loves Me

I've been really, really sick this weekend. I've been so nauseous that it's been difficult to concentrate on anything. I'm a little better today. I think it's because of last night's visit. Long time readers will remember Eric, my little dog, who I loved completely. He was an abandoned, beaten stray that came into our lives and immediately began setting things right. He loved us each the way we needed to be loved, watched out for us - spotting bad people in an instant and giving himself over to the job of being our companion.

When I got the flesh eating disease all those years ago, Eric was a big part of my healing. In fact the doctor thinks I'm well and alive because of him. But that's a story I only tell in person and only tell to a few. Needless to say, though, during the healing process he was beside me constantly. He alerted Joe to when I needed him - even when I didn't know I did. For almost a year after getting back on my feet, when coming home from a trip, Eric insisted that I drop my pants and he smelled my leg, examining it back and forth, looking for any sign of illness. It was only after this review that he would greet us properly.

Eric's death was one of the most difficult things I've ever endured. Both Joe and I openly wept and greived. His ashes are here with us and he will be buried with us. I miss him every day, and think of him several times a day. God sent us that little dog. I curse whoever beat him, whoever abandoned him but I thank life that it was to my arms he came when we saw him in that parking lot.

But last night, I woke into a dream and Eric was beside me. Cuddled up against me. For an hour I petted him and felt his warmth against me. I saw his eyes, again, looking at me with love and concern. I told him the 'three stories' that he liked to hear. How he came to live with us, how he got his name, and the 'other' one. The dream I woke into was of a world that was still populated by one little dog, with barrel chest and spindly legs, with floppy ears and greying snout.

When I woke into the real world, Eric was gone again, afresh, but I was feeling better. The nausea had abated a bit and I can conceive, easily, going to work.

But the oddest thing was, when I ran my fingers through my hair this morning, I'm sure there was a bit of brown fur there.


Belinda said...

I'm so glad you are feeling better Dave.

I believe that God gives us companions on the journey of life and often they have fur. The furry variety are often more faithful than those of us clad in skin.

Kei said...

So glad Eric came to visit you and reassure you when you needed him, whether you knew you needed him or not. He knew. I have no doubt you found a bit of his brown fur this morning.

glad you are feeling better.

Rosemary said...

Tears of understanding are falling.

FAB said...

You got me teary eyed Dave. I'm glad Eric came by, and I'm glad you're feeling better! God puts people and even animals in our lives when we need them, it's such a gift!

This reminds me of grandparents actually. They've been gone a long time now, but somehow when I need them they are present. I'll smell my Nannan or hear my Grandad in someone else's voice and then I know it's all going to be OK.

gwiz said...

Eric will always be nearby, watching and protecting you and Joe until you all meet again at "the Bridge".

Glad you're feeling better.

Veralidaine said...

*sniffle... SOB!*

I miss my animal angel these days too. I understand. My godmother also visited me in a dream some months after she passed. I saw her cat sitting on a log, and then the cat rose and walked away to reveal my dear godmother sitting behind her-- like, "Look who I brought to visit!"

Tammy said...

Eric knew he was needed again, and came. I have no doubt it was his fur on your hand.
I have a special kitty who left me years ago, yet whenever I am really sick, he is there. I grew up with that cat. I had him from the time my parents divorced when I was seven (he was my consolation prize), until right before I married at 23. He was my best friend, faithful companion, and kitty love of my life. I swear he curls up under the covers with me still, and he never even lived in the house.

Tammy said...

I meant never lived in THIS house. He was strictly a house kitty. It didn't come out wll.

luvmypeanut said...

I do believe that Eric came to visit you! How delightful and he brought some healing along with!

Thanks for sharing this with us!

gracie1956 said...

Three years ago my home burned and I lost everything I owned and had accumulated for 49 years. In total shock I stood across the street and watched it all burn without a tear. It was only when a fireman came out of the debris carrying my old cat Tigger all wrapped up in a blanket that I cried. I sat down on the ground and just wailed. My daughter and I both had PTSD to deal with for a long time. One night as I was just going to sleep I felt the unmistakeable feeling of a cat jumping up on my bed just as Tigger had done for 10 years. We didn't have a cat at the time but it was so real that I even sat up to look. Nothing was there but I smiled to myself knowing that Tigger had come to check on me. The next morning my daughter came into my room and sat down on my bed as she always does. She said, "Mom you won't believe me but Tigger came to visit me last night, he jumped on my bed!" I told her that he came to me too. We both cried but not with grief but with joy. I really do believe that he came to let us know that he was OK. Now my last memory of Tigger isn't of him wrapped up in that blanket after the fire. Thank you for sharing your story and for the opportunity to share mine. You are only the third person I have ever told.

By the way, have you ever visited the Rainbow Bridge web site? It's a really good place.

wendy said...

Oh my...crying at 6:30 morning! A few years ago I lost two beloved pets within a month of each other. It was very painful time...we called it "the year of loss". My 15 year old cat, Schmoo was the first of the pair to go and I grieve to this day. We'd had her since she was so small she fit in the palm of my hand and she was MY cat...she would walk over my partner to get to me. Now and then she visits me in my dreams and I'm also so glad to see her! I'm glad you had a visit from Eric. It was so sweet of him to pop in!

Anonymous said...

I feel you on this! I had a Beautiful Collie (Jessie) for 13 years in life, and have had her as my angel for 11 years now and i feel her pressence just as though she was standing right beside me. but you know its funny..every now and then i still have a good cry missing her!

Susan said...

I, too, am a survivor of necrotising fasciitis. Getting through this and dealing with the aftermath is certainly an experience. There aren't a lot of cheers to you, Dave!

And...thanks for your blog-it is one of my daily rituals.

Shan said...

Oh that's wonderful. What a lovely post, thank you. I'm glad you guys had Eric.

(And I noticed his cameo in one of the books you gave me!)