Over the past two years Abbey made a litle room in her heart for La Luz. Never one to turn away affection, Abbey was totally patient with La Luz, allowing her to pull on her feathery hair with sticky, baby fingers. Not making a peep when La Luz would grab her face and shriek with love or tug on her tail while chasing her around the kitchen. When La Luz pushed her out of the way or climbed on top of her, Abbey didn't mind, and she never snapped when La Luz hugged her to the point of strangulation. Most of the time she would simply lie right next to her, as if she knew it was her fate, as if there was nothing she wanted more in the world than to be attacked by a toddler. Even when La Luz yelled at Abbey and ordered her around -"Abbey, eat your food"; "Abbey, lie down"; "Abbey, sit"; "Abbey, go into the living room" - Abbey didn't mind. Her only response was to wag her tail and lick and lick some more and lick once again.
Tonight when we rock in the chair and recall the day's events things will be a little different. This time La Luz won't tell me about how Abbey licked her shirt and tried to eat her cookies or how Abbey wagged her tail or how she sat on the deck with Pop and watched Abbey eat her dinner. She won't tell me about how Pop took Abbey for a walk. Instead, this time I will have to try to explain that Abbey is up in heaven with the stars and that she won't find her in her usual spot in the living room on the floor next to Pop's chair.
There's probably not much La Luz will remember of Abbey, save what is captured in photographs, but one thing Abbey taught La Luz that she will always have is the sense that you can find great joy in a loving pet and endless amounts of unconditional love to go along with it. Maybe one day when it is time for La Luz to pick out a dog she will have a soft spot for the ones with feathery hair, holding on to some vague recollection from her childhood of the way it feels to run your hands through matted puppy hair and the everlasting love of a sweet, red dog she once knew quite well.
Thanks for all of the joy you brought us Abbey girl, you know you will be missed.