My Lovely Lady Lilo.
In December of 2003, I received a blessing in disguise. It was my
freshman year of college and I was ridiculously homesick. I received
my baby girl as a Christmas gift, and I didn't know it at the time,
but she was going to forever change my life.
Lilo was my very first pet. I had no idea what was in store for me!
She was so tiny and precious, with her big ol' bobble head and itty
bitty body! But she sure could terrorize an entire house weighing
only a few pounds!
When she was only a few months old, she got into a bag of jerky
treats. She emptied the contents of the bag and even chewed it to
pieces! After scolding her and shooing her out the door, watching
her waddle with a belly full of treats was comical! Later that night
getting ready for bed, I was fluffing my pillows and straightening
out my blanket when random treats began flying into the air! The lil'
piglet couldn't devour all of her treats and hid them around my
bedroom! I found some tucked into pillow cases, a few under the
blankets and even some stuffed under teddy bears on the floor!
That's when I knew as cute as she was innocent; she was a clever one
I have so many stories I want to share with the world about my
angel. But mostly I want to share what she has done for me.
Lilo’s middle name should have been “Loyal”. In the past five years,
my parents divorced, I joined the Air Force; I got married, and then
divorced too. She's flown to Hawaii and back and even picked up a
new sister, Nikki, a beagle. Eventually she even had a brother,
Weezy, the cat. Throughout all the moves and changes in my life, my
gal stood by my side. Every time I had to leave her, I would tell
her I was coming back and to wait for me because I loved her. Due to
my military career I was constantly moving through the states and as
far as Hawaii. No matter what, every time I returned it was as if
nothing changed. But when I would depart, the sadness in her eyes,
she knew I would come back, but never how soon. It broke my heart
every time because I never had an answer.
Finally the time had come, all of her paperwork approved for her and
Nikki to return to the islands. A month before her arrival while on
a walk, she came off her harness and walked ahead into traffic. She
was clipped by an SUV who did not stop to render any help. My little
girl didn't even have a chance.
I received the phone call from my dad about the accident. His voice
cracked as he told me the news. When he started the conversation
with I'm sorry I knew something was wrong. I immediately asked what
happened to my dogs, and he said there was an accident. Initially I
assumed it was Nikki because she was more apt to get on the loose.
When he said it was Lilo, my heart sank, and I crumbled and the
tears started flowing. My cousin was walking her when it happened
and he is only 17 years old. At a loss with what to do, a passerby
gave him a blanket, and another stranger gave him a ride to my dad's
house. With my sister's arrival she knew it was too late. Wrapped in
the blanket there was no life in her. My sister took her to the vet,
who confirmed what they already knew.
The entire time I kept receiving phone calls between my sister and
my dad. At the time I was at a shopping mall and I ran to my car. I
never even started the engine. I sat there wailing with my head in
my hands and tears flowing with no intentions of stopping.
I had been through so much with Lilo, and was so close to finally
being reunited with her for good. Even though she is a dog with a
shorter life span, I imagined her by my side for years to come. I
thought she was going to be there when I would finally have
children. She would have been an old gal by then, but none the less
cherished by all.
For weeks I slept with her picture in my arms. I had a dream I was
with her and that she came back to me. But when I woke up, I
couldn't even remember how soft her fur felt. I was desperately
trying to remember what it felt like to sleep with her, to hear her
snores and snorts. I found that I couldn't remember anything and
maybe that is why it hurt even more. My devastation with what
happened only became worse. I felt so useless with what happened, I
felt partly responsible even though I was an ocean away. I would
tell myself if only I had gotten the paperwork done sooner. If only
I wouldn't have had so many work obligations. If only...if only. But
"if only" wasn't going to change things.
Today I have Nikki by my side in Oahu. She's lonely and misses her
sister and suffers from separation anxiety. The cost on this island
for a pug averages between $1500-$2000. But I don't want another
dog. I want my Lilo back. My girl gave me strength and showed me
patience. She gave me love and nothing less.
I know wherever she is, she's doing just fine. And I like to think
she's still waiting for me.
Lilo...some day, I'll be there and I'll never leave again.
I love you.
Your momma and best friend,