I made it through the day.
I have been dreading January 16th, 2021 for three hundred and sixty-five days. I will forever remember January 16th, 2020 as one of the hardest days of my life.
This date forever holds a huge place in my heart. January 16th, 2012 is the day you were born and exactly eight years later it also marks the day you passed away. Charleston you were my heart dog. You were my first taste at owning a corgi. You are the dog that forever changed my life.
I admit I used to think people who shared stories of animals who saved their lives were a bit wacky. Of course, that was until it happened to me. Until I experience the unconditional love of an animal. Don’t get me wrong I have had many wonderful pets over the years but none of them spoke to my soul as this dog did. I get it now. The power of animals is amazing.
For seven years in a row, I put on your party hat and celebrated your birthday like the crazy corgi lady I am.
I spent an entire year tearing up at the sight of your pictures. I spent the entire year missing the sound of your dog tags jingling on your collar when you strutted around like you owned this house. I spent the entire year missing you and wishing you were still here.
I survived the first twenty-four hours after you were gone in sweat pants covered in your unbelievably thick endless shedding corgi glitter. I refused to vacuum because all of you would be gone. Little did I know you had a plan in the works? I know your looking down having a good laugh at our current situation.
I swore I would never have another dog in my lifetime. I was going to treasure the memories you left me with. I felt no dog could ever compare to you and that no dog could ever fill the hole that was left in my heart. No dog would ever get me as you got me. You just knew my soul. You were my perfect dog. My heart dog.
This year on January 16th I wiped the tears from my eyes and we celebrated what would have been your 9th birthday, which we now celebrate with Queen Kelso. I started in October trying to get her to rock a party hat. I knew she would be a challenge. She is kind of an old lady set in her ways. A real party pooper. On the first attempt, she bit me and drew blood. Not a fan of party hats I see. I was determined to get this birthday picture. The new game plan was to motivate her with dog treats and cheese until she realized party hats cannot harm corgis. Little hard work and a bit of blood loss and ta-da we did it. We tried to sing Happy Birthday to Kelso. Dear Kelso, I don’t know if it’s that you just don’t like that song or my singing in general but your barking in my face was received loud and clear. More treats less singing.
I believe in timing and I think Kelso came into our lives at the perfect time. She helped us survive the wild ever-changing wild world of 2020. She keeps my son and me laughing until it hurts. She has been nickname by my niece and trained to come when you call her “old donkey legs.” She takes fetch as the most serious task in the world. She reminds me every day of you Charlie in looks and attitude. I know you put her in our path to heal our hearts. Thank you, Charlie!
Here’s to many more years with corgis in party hats.