The era of Brian

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Each of my dogs has changed my life. It started with Noel, years ago. Left to die in the snow, with her belly split open, close to starvation. I got a phone call, drove to find her thinking what to do with her. I had just started my professional life and I was going to be rich. What I was, however, was unhappy. I had to travel to France and Belgium at least once a week, I worked all the time, I couldn’t sleep or eat. I didn’t have friends, my boyfriends lasted a week.I was surrounded by people who talked about their second homes in Switzerland and fleets of cars. I remember thinking: ‘what the hell will I do with the second home in Switzerland? And I can’t drive more than one car!’ I didn’t like myself then, I didn’t like anyone else-but I loved dogs. Always have. And when I wrapped the lifeless black body in my Β jumper, I knew she’d stay with me. For the first time in my life, I didn’t have a plan. For the first – and only – time in my life I didn’t care.

Noel, my Christmas Eve’s gift from heaven, survived. I left my well-paid job. I was terrified. But I liked my small flat and my old car, I liked my friends, who were just ordinary, happy students. I loved Noel. And gradually I put on some weight, my hair grew back, I slept most nights, I started teaching and learnt how to breathe again.

noel
me and Noel (10 years ago?)

My sister, relieved, told me she had begged my dad not to take me with him. I don’t believe in life after death, but my first abused dog was a remedy for my death drive, for my grief and my desperate attempt to prove I can manage without my dad, without anyone, even if it kills me. Especially if it kills me.

(My dad died in an accident, we had always been very close).

I still have the fear of loving anyone-because they might die and leave me. But we can’t survive without love.

Each of my dogs has changed my life. Now, it’s the era of Brian and I’m changing my life again.

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22 thoughts on “The era of Brian

  1. You are so very right about how dogs and other animals change our life for the better. I have three dogs, and they’re all pretty special. The last one who I rescued 1 yr ago that I didn’t intend to get from the animal shelter appears to be personally crafted for me. I’ve never had a dog before who was so much in love with me, and right now, that’s exactly what I need.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Funny how sometimes we get precisely what we need even if we didn’t know we needed it (though in my life it’s only true about dogs and people, not material objects or anything of this sort). All the best to you and all your dogs πŸ™‚ x

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I am very sorry to hear about your Dad’s tragic accident, even though it happened years ago! I believe that the feeling of being needed by someone, whether a person or an animal, that keeps us alive and functioning. Sometimes it brings about unexpected happiness which gives meaning to life. Brian is young – I hope you have many happy years sharing his love!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thank you Dolly-yet again, you have expressed it so well!
      After over 20 years I have learnt to love people as well (only occassionally worrying they are going to die). My dad was a wise man, even if I was too young to appreciate it then. We are born alone and die alone-we meet people on the way, they can be a blessing or a curse, but we need to live up entirely to our own expectations.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Now you have expressed it so well: we only have to compete with our own expectations of ourselves. I am sure you realized that you almost quoted Camus! I think you are as much an existentialist as I am , and that’s why we understand each other so well.

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    1. Thank you Samantha. We can all be all of these things sometimes – and we all find it very difficult other times πŸ˜‰
      I do hope my dogs love me-but they also need me and that’s what makes them so important in my life;) x

      Liked by 1 person

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