Saturday, August 7, 2010

The Passing of "Puppah Chawllie"?

As I begin typing this, our 14-year-old black Lab, Charlie, is on his bed in the kitchen. He is very weak and in the last stages of his journey here.

I like to say he and our son, Clay, were puppies together. They both came into our lives within the same year. As our son grew, he thought he was a puppy, too. He would try to drink from the dog's water bowl and chase Charlie around the yard. "PUPPAH! PUPPAH!...T'Mere Puppah!"he would shout, with toddler glee.

One time we went fishing out at the lake. Luckily, the stroller made it down the hot, dusty path to the fishing spot. Charlie had a great time learning to swim and running around doing puppy things all day. After a long and tiring day, we headed back to the car. I stopped to pick something up that had fallen off of the stroller and before I could start again, Charlie had crawled into the storage compartment beneath the stroller! I guess he figured, "if that puppy doesn't have to walk, why should I?" He rode the rest of the way down there.

When our son was about 3, just after sunset, he and I were lying on some cushions on the floor...playing and talking. Clay looked out the glass doors and saw Charlie out in the yard looking back at us. He turned to me and said, "Mom?.... look how Charlie soaks into the night....and his eyes shine like stars." I was dumbfounded by this poetic statement from such a little guy.

Charlie has been a faithful friend over these many years. He has been with us on our walks...where his boy was in a stroller, then a wagon, a scooter and now a skateboard. Clay is just starting high school, a new journey for him and us. He is our only child and we are really feeling how quickly time is passing now. As we learn to let go in many ways, we know that Charlie will always be with us wagging his big, old tail.

Soon, he will soak into the night... one last time...and he will be a shining star in so many of our wonderful memories.

Well, evening is upon us and once again, this old dog is full of new tricks. He wagged his tail at the mention of dinner and (with a lot of help) is now outside trying to eat. That's a Lab for ya! I'll keep you posted.


  1. *sigh*...I am literally holding back tears and I just got the biggest set of goosebumps ever!

    I am so sorry that Charlie is on his journey. Clay is on a new journey as well. They are meshing.

    I love you, and you know I am always here for you.

    Gerushia's New World

  2. Oooof! Thank you, Kim....I'm trying so hard not to cry!

    I'm so grateful for your friendship.

  3. Hi Shell,
    I am so sad that you and your family are going through this. I know that it is so painful. Our pets are part of the family. I'm crying too, just remembering the loss of our family dog. Sending hugs to you and your family. You guys are in my thoughts and prayers. Love, Judy

  4. Your experience reminds me of my previous two dogs that holding a spot for me in line on the other side of rainbow bridge. When my last one passed, I cried for weeks. He went blind a year and a half before he died. During that time, he taught me how to be his seeing eye people. (
    Hugs from Charlino

  5. OMG!! that is BEAUTIFUL!!!! it made my eyes water!!!! how i love the comment of how he soaks into the night and shines as a star...

    i didn't know Clay said that....omg i LOVE it...
    and the picture......

    it's so amazing how we Americans treat dogs...just arriving from was heartbreaking... the dogs are so starved and emaciated, they were eating diapers...

    Charlie was truly blessed to have your family as his...

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