Our little Archie dog died yesterday. Little loyal boy, who loved all of my babies and showed great gentleness and humility. We found him at the RSPCA over ten years ago and adopted him. We thought our beagle needed a companion. He drove us mad over the years. He was only around one year old when we brought him home, but we would speculate wildly about what must have happened to him in that first year. He was incredibly afraid of storms and could climb trees and hop over fences with ease. He hurt himself once, cut his tummy open, and my mum nursed him back to health, and so became his mum, too.
I knew yesterday morning when I saw him. He had been coughing, we all had gastro. The dehydrating children took my attention. His demeanour had changed from determined to pleading. I called my darling because I knew I couldn't take the children to the vet, too. I told the three-year-old over and over Archie is very sick, darling. His chubby little cuddles Poor Archie. I brought the big boy straight into the yard after school. He turned his face and silently mixed the dirt from his hands into the tears on his cheeks. We all gave him a cuddle and our love.
My darling returned home empty handed and eyes glistening. Where's Archie? over, and over, from the three-year-old. Where's Archie? Where's Archie? I tried to explain, He was so sick, darling, and he died. We won't see him anymore. The big boy buried his head in the lounge pillow and escaped into the cartoons on telly. A little while later, the three-year-old asked me Why is Archie in the water? Where is he? He thought I had said Archie dived.
So I tried again. We won't get to play with our Archie any more matey, I said. Oooh, but I want to! I don't know what died is mummy. And when I thought about it, my brain tumbled and I didn't really know either. I don't know.
Last night was the biggest storm I ever heard. The loudest thunder, the brightest flashes of lightning.