Blacky Black, one of the Gingersnap family that found their way into my life in Albuquerque and followed me here to this forsaken sandbar between the Gulf and the Atlantic ocean, went missing. Not completely unusual for her, I told myself at first. She’d done it before and, as she was neutered, I wasn’t worried that she would bring me even more little bundles and carry the Gingersnap family into the fourth generation. But as the days dragged on, surpassing the longest she’d ever been gone in the past, I began to lose hope. The only thing worse than having something you love die, is having something you love disappear without a trace. Closure is hard to find under those circumstances. You always wonder and you will never stop wondering.
Sometimes, a critter comes into your life and leaps so deeply into your heart you can’t imagine how it keeps beating without them there. Typhoid, or Big Lug as I had begun to call him, was such a critter. He brought me joy, made me laugh, gave me strength in the all too many rocky moments my life seems to have become these last few years. On March 11th, he died. One moment he was this boisterous, happy, crazed pup and the next he was sprawled out on a chrome table with the vet giving me that look anyone who loves a critter fears more than any other.
I don’t remember leaving the vet’s office, don’t remember much of the week that followed. The loss of that little guy devastated me. I’m still not completely recovered. I wonder if I ever will be.
Two blows, one month, all but eclipsing the joy of the good news I received during those 31 days. Stealing The Marbles is getting some serious exposure amongst the Hellenic community worldwide. I heard from my Athens friends Maria and Gerry. 919 people singed up for a chance to win a copy of STM on Goodreads. I heard from my publisher that Meter Maids Eat Their Young is a go project and the contract for the book arrived a few days later. All things that should have had me jumping up and down pumping my fist in the air.
This will pass. I know it will. Life goes on and all that rot. But at the moment, my heart has a hole that is all too slowly closing.