I decided to read this lovely blog and found myself crying. I was already planning on writing about our much-loved Storm. Our beautiful, 80 pound, black lab.
Storm doesn’t quiver at lightning or thunder or honking cars. She doesn’t gallop for comfort when the sweeper comes her way. She stands bravely at the door, warning those who knock that she means business (unless you’ve come to pet her, then you’re welcome anytime). The only word that frightens her is the word BATH. Her tail goes straight between her legs and she cowers.
Her ears perk up and she jumps a few feet in the air (pretty impressive for a 10 year old dog with graying chin and belly) when the words CAR, RIDE, or WALK are mentioned in even the politest of conversation.
As soon as I exit the bed to get ready for the day, she’s immediately in it, curled up next to her boy, my husband. She follows him around like…a puppy. And when he’s not around, she follows me.
She drools whenever food is remotely near her. She lays by the oven in anticipation, endangering everyone carrying hot, heavy objects and not looking where they’re going.
Storm is the best alarm clock; she works in stages. Upon discovering she is hungry (never before 7), she starts to cry ever so quietly. If that doesn’t work, she nudges us gently with her wet nose. If that doesn’t work, she resorts to wrapping her paw around whatever arm she can grasp and attempting to shake us awake. That always works.
When times have been hard, and they have definitely been hard, she sits still and lets you hug her. She’s been known to lick up a tear or two. Storm always sits still for hugs. She knows when to comfort. She never says I told you so. She never refrains from loving you. She loves anyone who is willing to give her butt scratches or food.
Storm has the most impressively awful farts. They can clear multiple rooms of the house at once. No one else’s farts have ever been mistaken for hers. Silent but deadly rings true. But as she’s gotten older, stairs make her fart loudly. Nothing can make us laugh like Storm “toot toot tooting” all the way up the stairs. She does not seem to get the joke.
Storm is getting old for a lab. She gives us slightly annoyed looks when children play a little too rough. She sighs when she lays down. More and more white appears, contrasting with her black coat. Two lumps are slowly growing in her armpits.
I’m so scared of losing Storm. I know that when you get a dog, that they won’t live as long as you. I know that you should give them the best possible time in their short lives. But I’m still scared. There’s no replacing Storm. No other dog could possible be like her. I wouldn’t want to replace her either.
Our Storm is beautiful and loved.