Part 3 of 3 – Homecoming
To be honest, I’ve put off writing this post. I have found laundry to do, books to read, closets to reorganize — anything to delay revisiting the day I returned home after Typhoon Glenda. But you, dear readers, have very politely read the first two installments of this story, and you deserve to know how it ended.
When I walked into my house on the morning of July 17th, I was looking forward to a cup of coffee and a leisurely breakfast. That didn’t happen.
The first thing that struck me when I walked through the house was that it seemed unnaturally quiet. There was no bird chatter or excited, welcome-home barking from my dog, Lai Lai.
“Lai Lai”, I called. Silence.
I raced through the house but she wasn’t there. Her blanket wasn’t there. Her water bowl wasn’t there.
“Oh my God”, I shouted.
An unsmiling Martin said, “Things have changed”.
Anyone who has ever loved a dog knows how I felt when I realized that my dog had died while I was away. I still can’t think about that morning without crying. We spent eleven beautiful years together and it breaks my heart to think that she died without me by her side. I knew that she had been failing, but hadn’t realized that she was so near the end. Why couldn’t she have waited for me?
I’ve thought about it a lot and have come to the conclusion that Lai Lai hung on much longer than she should have — because of me. From the moment we first laid eyes on one another eleven years ago we had loved each other — so deeply that neither of us could bear to say goodbye. So she slipped away quietly while I was gone. Easier for both of us. One final gift.
While I was absorbing this terrible blow, Martin then broke the news that our birds had been stolen while he slept one night. My fury howled like the typhoon that had just ripped through the country. Outraged that some people choose to live their lives in the gutters, like vermin.
There was more bad news to come. Our landlord had visited the week before, announcing that he’ll be moving here from Australia in October. We have three months to find a new home. Though this was not unexpected, it wasn’t particularly welcome news. Who likes moving? (though I am incredibly excited about being free of this annoying landlord)
This was definitely not the homecoming I had been hoping for.
I’m in limbo right now. Life is changing and I’m not sure where we are heading. It feels like I’ve been slammed by a wave and am being tumbled and tossed through the surf. I know I will eventually surface, but can’t be sure exactly where. I can only trust that it will be in a good place. I’ll let you know…
Thank you for joining me on this crazy journey!
India, I think moving can be quite an adventure. Out of our fire came a wonderful, joyful adventure to land in an even more beautiful space. Just think Lai Lai is in heaven with Sam…..
Thank you, Maxine! Lai Lai’s beautiful energy is still with me and I know that we’ll find another great place to live…
I know the pain of dog loss and it hurts for a long time. Yes, they stay with us longer than they should, sometimes, braving failing health and pain to continue with us. It is hard to let go for both species. So you are now off on a new adventure. I know you will keep your soul alert for the clues that will lead you to where you need to be. Sometimes the feeling of limbo is frustrating but the new direction will appear and you will live it with all your usual passion. Have faith.
Thank you for those words of wisdom and experience, Phyllis!! I know that change is part of the journey and so is learning to feel comfortable in a state of limbo. You don’t always see the action that’s taking place. I’m looking forward to finding out what’s in store for us next…
OMG, this is beyond tearful. Our pets are our children. I remember when taking my trip to Africa in May of 2012, I worried that my husband might have to make “the decision” and that my Haley would not have me by her side. Luckily for all of us, she remained with us until that December when we were all by her side until the end. Even tho it’s been 1.5 years, I still can’t think about it without tears. It’s hard for me to imagine that someone could remove the birds without the birds making noise. Our cockateils get noisy when they see a squirrel outside the window. I hope wherever they are, that they are being treated with kindness and respect. Homes can be replaced, but our pets live in our hearts forever. I’m sooooooo very sorry for your losses.
Thank you very much, Laurena! There’s just something about losing a dog… And yes, I wondered about the birds making noise as well. Their cages are outside on our patio, while Martin was asleep in the master bedroom at the back of the house, with a fan beside the bed. I do hope they’re being treated well wherever they are — they were certainly happy here…