Sunday, September 22, 2013

Life After Bug

The house is so incredibly quiet without Bug.
But the memories are everywhere and screaming loudly.

We expect to see Bug in the backyard, on the big dog bed in the living room or wandering around the kitchen. There's a plethora of blankets we had to launder and keep in rotation because of his accidents, which I've whittled down to just a few. All of his supplies and medications are gathered on the kitchen table to take back to the vet. And just imagine all of the pug decor around every corner of this house.

Two food bowls have been decreased to one.
Two leashes still hang next to the door in the garage.
Two pet taxis remain stacked on top of each other.

I plan to take Bug's cage down today and put it away. Jack doesn't like to stay in it. He prefers his little dog bed on top of the real bed in the back. Jack has taken over the living room dog bed on occasion this weekend, so I think I'll leave it where it is. He was rarely was on it because it became Bug's favorite spot after he couldn't get on the couch anymore. We bought it after our first trip to the pet friendly Georgia cabin. Bug grew attached to the one there so quickly.

We have a new routine to get used to and an old one to forget. No more having to rush home and feed Bug to give him his insulin shot and making sure plans for the evening worked around that same task. Trying to figure out what kind of food he would find acceptable to eat. Taking him out every hour on the hour because he had to pee. Picking up his meds every two weeks from the vet, and in between if needed. I took the reminders out of my phone calendar yesterday. And cried.

I canceled a trip I was going to make to Indy this weekend, and we tried doing some normal things Saturday to take our mind off it. But thoughts creep in, they always do. I pretty much woke up crying. Pmo got upset cooking breakfast, because, of course, we had bacon. We both lost it at various times of the day for different reasons. Luckily, when one of us breaks down, the other is calm and comforting. I'm not sure how it works that way, but we're lucky it does.

I have a picture album with pugs on it that I bought at a consignment store I'm going to fill up soon. Right now, it has a bunch of older pictures of Bug because I rarely print off pics anymore. They just go on Facebook and Instagram. But it's a project I need to finish now more than ever.

I've always said I was going to write a book about Bug, and I've never been more motivated. So I think I'll be spending my free time jotting down notes and going through Kleenex as I recall his stories. I have no idea how to even go about getting published, or if there would even be any interest, but I have to do it for myself at the very least.

I'm overwhelmed, to say the least, with the support we've received. I always thought I might be bugging (pun intended) people with all of my Bug pics on Facebook and blogs about what it was like to take care of him. Apparently, that wasn't the case. Seems his crazy antics and cantankerous attitude were universally accepted, and possibly admired.

In time, I know we'll get used to Bug being gone, and probably get another pug, but we're absolutely in no hurry. We need to mourn just as much as we need a break. Bug was a handful, there's no way around it. Whereas Jack is fairly low maintenance. And suddenly, we have a strong urge to take Jack with us everywhere we go. I don't know if it's that we don't want him to be alone, or that we weren't able to give him that kind of attention before because of Bug sucked up all of our energy. We always thought Jack would love walking on the beach, and I think our next trip to the ocean will have to be a pet friendly one.

Jack probably feels smothered right now. I've been petting him constantly and holding onto him a little too tightly this weekend. He's never been a big snuggler. Jack's a dog's dog who likes to run and play and do typical "dog" stuff. Bug, on the other hand, was his own dog. No doubt about that.


Anonymous said...

I am so sorry. Bug was one of my all time favorite pups. He really was the coolest. I've been thinking of you this weekend. - Rachel

Jennifer Brodhacker said...

I'm so sorry Myrtle! Hugs, thoughts and prayers coming your way! I'm a little upset you were coming to Indy without plans to see me but I'll let it slide ;) love you!