Saturday, November 5, 2011

A Dog Called Jack and a Boy Called Damian

Here is my cutie-pie little great-grandson, Damian, who looks so much like my only granddaughter, and his mom, Ali. Damian and I spend Fridays together and he has had a crash course in getting over his fear of dogs, since I live with so many of them (four at last count!) Of course he knew Pup, too.

I remember when Damian was just weeks old, and he and Ali were visiting. She had laid the teeny baby on the futon in the back room to sleep and, in going down the hall, I chanced to look in and see Pup sitting staring at him, with his head cocked. He had never seen a human so small and was trying to puzzle it out. I brought him out of the room, thinking, after all, he is a wolf. I know he never would have hurt him, but still.........

Anyway, last night I started to read Damian a book called A Dog Called Jack. I had picked it up at the library, hadnt looked through it, it looked like a happy I read, though, the dog began growing old, I started to see where it was heading, tried to hold onto myself, kept reading, with my voice getting thicker and thicker. And then Jack died. OMG.

Damian said, "That is so sad. It makes me feel like crying right now." And I choked out, "It makes me....think of......Pup." and Damian and I exchanged a devastated tearful look. "Boo-hoo," I said, with a weak smile, and he nodded.

Yes, I still have my other dog, and yes, three others are a room away. And I hand out treats to all the dogs I know. And one day might like to have a puppy - a dog small enough to pick up, for a change.

But I could have a hundred dogs, and it still wouldnt fill the place that is Pup's alone. I still am stricken with sudden tears when I think about my boy.

However, it wasn't long before Damian cracked me right up. I am struggling with a bad perm right now, so my "hair" (more like a haystack) goes well with my cackle. It was perfect for Hallowe'en, I'd open the door and the kids would all scream. (Just kidding, no one even came, they were likely too scared. "A witch lives there! And about a hundred dogs!")  

I was telling Damian that Jas has to go to the groomer and that she doesnt like going. I told her, "You have to suffer to be beautiful, you know, as my mother always said." Then I reflected thoughtfully, "Hmmmm....I've suffered a lot, and I didn't get beautiful." Damian said honestly and sympathetically, "No, you didn't."

Did I ever laugh!


  1. Oh, Sherry, aren't kids the greatest? I love it.
    I seem to recall, however, on your blog not too long ago, a picture of you in Tofino lookin' pretty damn good. Oh, um, well, maybe it was someone else?
    Wish we had met when we were going to different schools together, so I could offer an informed opinion. Can't believe we were even living in the same part of town for a while without meeting.
    Glad you support my hardnosed political opinion. I'm not in the habit of spelling Prime Minister without the appropriate capital letters, but I have to do it now.

    Kay, Alberta, Canada
    An Unfittie’s Guide to Adventurous Travel

  2. Out of the mouth of babes!

    Seriously, I know how you feel about Pup, nothing, no amount of knowing can prepare you for the moment of transition, cherish all your moments, hold them in your heart, for he never will be away from you ♥

  3. What a precious story. Damian is such a handsome little guy and your closeness shows so well in this piece. It was a sad book but I'm glad you had the talk you had afterwards and he see's his grandma is such a soft hearted sweetheart who loves animals. I think our kids and their kids learn the big lessons of life by knowing those sad things that happen and that crying is ok. I am so touched by this!

  4. Your family stories are always treasures to read. Treasures. Actually they have made me think of something. Something that might possibly be a good idea. You write so beautifully. And you take wonderful photos.

    I ask myself: "Is there a children's book to assist children in dealing with the grief of loosing an animal friend?" You do have a wonderful collection of poems and stories that I believe you should turn into a book to assist children in dealing with the loss of an animal friend. The manner in which you speak of Pup always changes from the manner in which you speak of other things.

    OK, my eye is itching so badly I cannot go back and read this for mistakes. :)

  5. Ah, you (and Damian) made me laugh. Great way to kick-start the day!

    But GREAT-Grandson??? No way! How old were you when his grandmother (OMG!) was born? Ten??? Twelve???

  6. I'm still getting used to being grandmother, great grandmother takes my breath away, literally. Wonderful story and those little ones always have a way of getting to the core of things.


  7. I so enjoy your grandmother stories, Sherry! Damian is such a charmer!! Enjoy every moment with him.

  8. I love the candor of children! What a heartwarming story!


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