Friday, July 31, 2009

Goodbyes Are So Hard. . .

Today I said goodbye to one of my dearest friends. We have spent the past 16 years together and she will be dearly missed. So tonight, my blog is dedicated to her, my dear, loyal, faithful, and beautiful friend, Sugar Marie.
I want to start off by saying thank you to my dear friends that sent flowers and cards today - it meant the world to me. In fact as the first flowers arrived I had just been thinking about going to the store and buying myself some bright yellow sunflowers to brighten my home, as it seems so dark without Sugar. It was a huge surprise when Gary walked in with 3 gorgeous sunflower stems from our friends and neighbors Dennis & Susan - Thank you friends! Not 15 minutes later as I was putting the sunflowers in a vase, there was a knock at my door and my dear friend Sherri was standing there with some beautiful yellow day lilies that she and her daughter picked out for me. Thanks Garvers - you guys are the best.

So, this is my dear Sugar, several years ago when she was still young and vibrant and full of life. She was a beautiful dog and this is how I will always remember her - not frail and weak like she sadly had become.

This is my dear little girl when she was still just a baby. How she loved this bench and how many hours she spent there sunning herself. In fact, even after the beanch was long gone this was Sugar's spot in the yard and she loved to take an afternoon nap there in the sunshine.

I spent this afternoon going through 16 years of photos of my beloved friend. It is funny all of the memories this conjoured up for me. Strangely, looking through all of the photos made me happy and kept me from spending the afternoon crying. Photographs have a way of helping - bringing those we love back to us when they are gone. I am thankful for all of the photos I have of her. I just wish there would be time for more.

Sugar Marie was a character! She loved the camera and would almost pose for you when she saw you had it in your hands. Because of this we did a lot of silly things with her when the camera was out. Like having her climb up on the kitchen counter!!! Don't worry, I cleaned it real good afterward.
It was the Christmas tradition to get our pictures taken with our respective dogs each year after decorating the Christmas Tree. Of course we had to get the dogs all "decorated" too. Doesn't Sugar look thrilled in her Santa suit?

Another Christmas - but no Santa Suit, this year it was just scarves for the dogs.

Just a winter day snuggling on the couch with my friend. She always had full reign of the house - including the furniture and the beds.

She knew she was the queen of our house, and so did everyone else! I so remember this Sunday after church. The girls and I were playing with her and dressing her up (which she always liked actually) and she just looked so natural dressed up as a queen - had to take this picture. It was perfect!!!

My Sugar just loved to be outside. Sometimes in the summer when it was so hot I would have to force her to come inside the house. Even lately as frail and weak as she was, she loved to go outside and sun herself and I would have to force her to come in before she got dehydrated and sick from the heat.

See how happy she is? I really have missed seeing this kind of joy and sparkle in her eyes the past 2 years. But I know tonight she is in heaven with all of that sparkle back in her eyes!

Did I mention that Sugar climbed walls? Yep, that's right! She did this until we moved out of the old house and she was almost 14 years old! But by that time she could get up there but couldn't get down! There were plenty of days that I had to try to get this dog off the fence all by myself! This picture was taken by our neighbor from his side of the fence.

I have never had a dog that climbed fences before (but our dog Zsa Zsa does it now too - she just doesn't go over and leave the yard). Sugar has climbed walls since the 1st week we brought her home at 8 weeks old. W e tried everything to break her of it and just couldn't. Our neighbors all kinda got a kick out of it and never seemed to mind when she would pop into their yard, or through their doggy door to say hi.

Here she is again in her favorite part of our old back yard - where the bench used to be. I will forever miss seeing her so proud and beautiful. But I asked God today before she closed her eyes for the last time to have my Doodle meet her at the gates and keep her company till we are all together again. Almost 19 years ago to the day I said goodbye to my Doodle for the last time. I have given myself today to grieve and cry, tomorrow I will wake up ready to celebrate life. After all, in 2 days my dear granddaughter will be 2 years old - once again she brings me joy and takes my sadness away.
Goodnight old friend - I love you so much!
And goodnight to you my human friends - thank you for spending this time with Suagr and me tonight!


Eva said...

I sat today and read this post all the while crying for a dog that I did not know. What a beautiful tribute to a dear old friend! I'm so sorry for your loss.

Love always,

Penny said...

I, too, sat here and bawled my eyes out while reading this!! I am so sorry Sugar is gone. I know exactly how you feel. I lost Shadow on Sun so it's been rough here, too.

At least we know they were well loved... and that they knew it... and that's the important thing!!

I am so sorry, Marta...