affinity

 

My sweet girl Hannah passed away Monday morning. Hannah was my girl, she was sweet, insanely smart and sassy. She would pretend she didn’t hear you when she didn’t want to walk over to you. She made you work for her love and didn’t let just anyone pet her. She protected me and I protected her, we were a little family where it was just us against the world. I knew that no matter what happened that I could always come home to her.

It’s been hard not hearing her tap around the house all day. Or her laying by my feet while I do homework. I am adjusting but losing your best friend is so hard.

In honor of my sweet girl, my first dog, and my best friend I am posting an essay I wrote about her a few years ago. This essay is old and the writing isn’t the best but it describes a little bit of her warm personality.

I love you Hannah Bee, my rainbow, my love, I can’t wait to see you again one day.

AFFINITY

My favorite articles to read at night were often tidbits of history. At parties or other social gatherings I often would brandish these facts, as if I was a terribly cultured young woman and would often receive comments on my wide breadth of knowledge, when in fact it was just a consequence of me not going to sleep at a proper time.

I tapped away at my Macbook inside my apartment, each keystroke, a loud echo reverberating through the empty room. I was trying to write something funny as colleagues and friends alike decided that I was better at comedy, not my keen observations on the world at large.

My ancient Yorkie looked curiously at me as I sat at the dinner table with a cup of tea resting beside me. Her brown fur stuck at strange angles over her furry little body; she was the epitome of lovely and awkward. Her owner who did not have the time to take care of her anymore had given Hannah away. When I first met her she was frail but unfailingly kind. I tried not to think of the time I did not spend with her as time lost, but thought of it as her having fun adventures till she found me.

At night I would stay up alone, reading articles on my computer or whatever thing I could find to keep my unkempt mind busy. My mind gathering all the data it could hold and neatly filing it away to call forward at a better time. I would tell myself that reading more and more things would make me a better writer in the long run but in all honesty I’d take sleep over artistic ability any day.

Hannah didn’t quite know how to sit on anyone’s laps and settled for resting her face right next to your knees. I felt an affinity with this strange old dog, who did not mind melting into the couch with you nor did she mind the nights where your body was so heavy with liquor all you could do was collapse on the floor into giggles.

Hannah, despite being exuberantly kind had days when grief racked her small little body. She would limber around the apartment, dragging her tiny body around as if it was made of stone. I wondered if it was because she was old or because she felt a constant anxiety that would not ease up.

On days like that I would wrap myself up and walk down to the park down the street. Hannah trotting alongside me until she grew tired and I had to carry her the rest of the way. The park itself wholly unremarkable aside from the water tower that sat at its center and the giant hill it was firmly planted on. The park also allowed a lovely view of I-35 and you could see the most beautiful sunsets from the top.

Hannah and I sat there, her face resting on her paws and occasionally glancing up at mine. I patted her small head and we both watched the cars moving left and right then completely out of view.

My thoughts centered on finding something meanwhile to write about, her thoughts, probably something about food.

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peace treaties & glass bones

 

I suppose it has been a while since I vented my anxiety. The thing that never leaves, the thing that I began perceiving before I could even put a name on it.

Life has been better lately, and for me that is an achievement worthy of recognition. For many years life has felt like an uphill battle that I’ve always been losing. I left every birthday, every New Year’s Eve feeling a deep seated sadness that I survived for another year and begged the Universe to give me an answer as to why.

More on that another day.

In short:

I quit my job and found a better one.

I am ONE semester away from graduating with a degree that has a really long name.

I still have not found the career that I can stick to for the rest of my life, that’s okay.

I am in a loving relationship.

I have a car and a dog and air in my lungs.

I ALMOST have enough money for my dream camera.

My aunt once told me, “if the good times don’t last, neither do the bad ones.”

I am telling myself that but also trying to tell myself to enjoy the moment I am in, to stop daydreaming in class and focus on the lecture about peace negotiation or the lecture about gender roles, to expand myself wholly. (Write more you maniac! Go on more walks! Hug your old dog!)

It is a challenge, to be out of this eternal war that rages within me, for a temporary peace treaty to be brokered.

I promise you that I will try to enjoy this feeling that I am happier than I am writing myself to be. I am feeling something akin to being content and I am smiling and laughing but I am also terrified of feeling that pain again.

I will leave you with another quote from Amelie, one that I keep repeating to myself.

“So, little Amelie (Rubab), your bones aren’t made of glass. You can take life’s knocks. If you let this chance go by, eventually your heart will become as dry and brittle as my skeleton.”