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Monday, June 20, 2011

First Love

The first thing that came to mind when I saw this topic was my first 'boy' love,. It was in third grade and I was sure I was going to marry him. He was the only one for me. I was 8 and relatively new in this school and there he was looking absolutely perfect and HE thought I was the most beautiful girl he had ever seen. Perfection! But ya know, Tim and I never even had a date! It was a brief mutual infatuation, but it was my first taste of romantic love. I still see him once in a while and we laugh about the third grade affair. It was not my first love.

I am not going to talk about familial love because that is so special and so incomparable to any other type of love and it is not going to be my subject today either.  My family occupies 90% of my heart, if you care to measure love that way, but the other 10% is very powerful and also important. I am going to write about one of the major parts of that 10%.

My first love, the one I would have given my life for, if needed, was with me for a very long time and occupied by entire world. My family, if they are reading this, know that I am going to introduce you to Smokey.  He was a little reddish colored cocker and something mix puppy my parents got when I was 4 years old.  The first day we had him I was showing him off at my Grandmother's house and dropped him off her back porch, which, by the way, was a second story porch. Everyone thought I had just killed my most precious gift ever.  Wrong!  This little man-dog was as tough as his new owner. He was fine, a little confused when he landed and probably a little sore, but he got up and shook it off!  Good dog!

We were together constantly. He wasn't allowed on the furniture, but he slept on my bed sometimes  (if Momma didn't see him.) He played where I played with whatever I played with.  I dressed him up and played house with him. I tossed balls for him. I petted and kissed him and loved him with all my heart. He was my best friend, my little 'brother', my baby...this little dog was my everything.

I was the last of three kids. One brother and one sister. We lived where there wasn't an overabundance of kids my age to play with until I got into school. Smokey was my constant companion and he was whatever I needed him to be. I loved him as much as I loved any of the people in my world and believe me, I loved all the people in my world!

When I was a senior in high school we had a horrid snow storm. One which required we stay off the roads because they were filled with 3 feet of snow.  Just a day before the storm Smokey had to be taken to the Vet. He hadn't been eating well, wasn't drinking very much and not acting like himself.  He was to undergo some tests for diagnoses. The doctor called us that afternoon and told us he couldn't do anything for our baby.  He was just dying of old age. He was asking permission to euthanize him. What an awful decision to have to make for a 17 year old who didn't remember any day of her life without him! I couldn't be with him and I couldn't let him suffer and I couldn't say it was okay. It was NOT okay. Fortunately, I came around in short order and realized I couldn't keep him living just so I wouldn't have to live without him. I agreed and it was done. He was gone and 44 years later, I still love that dog and I still miss him.  He was my first love.

Today we have 2 dogs. In all the years of my life I have had a dog or more than one. I can't stand the feel of my house without a dog to share my space. They have filled up my life and it all started with one little reddish brown fur ball named Smokey working his way into my heart and teaching me how to love someone more than myself and more than anything else.

The thing about first loves, no matter who they are, is that they are part of who we are today and that makes the memory of that love so strong and so rich!



  1. This is so great. Here I was thinking you were going to talk about a person. Good job.


  2. I love my dogs and it's pure tragedy to lose one. I see my white-faced golden retriever slowing down and it breaks my heart to know he is 12½ because I've been through it all before. Yes, that is a real love!


  3. Ah, Smokey!! He had a sweet nature, and he was part of our family for a long time. But no one loved him like you did. I can close my eyes and remember exactly how he looked. I also remember the day you dropped him off the porch. Dad said that was what was wrong with him for the rest of his life -- that you had dropped him on his head. I'm pretty sure he was kidding! Great post. Loved this one.

  4. @Laura...thank you so much.

    @Joyce...Our fur people are so much a part of our lives and hold a huge amount of love for us and from us. I agree, it is real love.

    @Pat...I was thinking about Dad saying that over and over about his head being damaged. lol Thanks for letting me know you enjoyed it. He was such a good boy. And a beautiful dog!

  5. He sounds like a fabulous little fella and he certainly seemed destined to be with you, right when and where you needed him. It's amazing how powerful love for our animal family members can be! Great piece, thanks for sharing *hugs*

  6. @Mojo...It's so cool how sharing your life with little fur people is so similar to raising kids, except you can't potty train kids in 2 weeks and you can't put them in kennels when you go away. They really are my cuddles bunnies and my babies.
    Thanks for dropping by and leaving your thoughts.

  7. HOW TRUE...odear you made me tear up again..they are so responsive......loving 24/7....and well YUP..we WILL see them again..i just KNOW IT! : )
    dang...tearing up again. **hugs**

  8. Our fur babies are great, aren't they? We have seven (4 dogs and 3 cats) and they are all unique and special to us.

    Enjoyed hearing about your first love Smokey and what he meant to you. Thanks for sharing.

  9. @Brenda...I think you and I spend more time wiping tears reading other's blogs than anyone else. I am going with the tender hearts defense here. Thanks for stopping by.

    @Claudia...Thanks, he was a little girls blessing, for sure.

    @Catchats...Glad you liked it and glad you have fur babies in your life, as well! They enhance mine pretty much beyond measure.

  10. I had a cat Lucy who was my best friend for a long time. One day she just disappeared and to this day I still miss her.

  11. I can soooo relate to this, it's beautiful. My first love was a dog, and I wrote about her this week for GBE2.

  12. Oh this is beautiful!! I had a dog that I adored too for too short of a time she graced my life...but those were powerful and wonderful years when she was here. Like you, I can't stand the feel of my house without my dog around.

    Cheers, Jenn.

  13. My best friends have had 4 legs... :) ~Spark ~

  14. Oh, sweet and heartbreaking. My oldest was in love with our Bogey. She was away at college when Bogey's time came and I didn't call her until after it was over because I knew that she'd drive home, too fast and crying, to get there. That was 10 years ago and Bogey's tags are still on her keychain.

  15. This is such a sweet blog!

    We had a beautiful Irish Setter when I was growing up and I still miss him too...animals are amazing!

  16. Many of these posts are emotional, but this one made me cry. I think we all have had pets that stayed with us for a long time. My cat is 20 and I hope and pray she'll always be there, but know she won't.
    Nicely done.

  17. @Kate...I know exactly...((hugs))

    @Langley...I have read lots of first loves about fur babies. Can only assume it's because that unconditional love imprints for life.

    Jenn...I think a house is just a house without a fur baby to make it home. :) 2

    Word Nerd...I still have Smokey's tags also.

    Marian...I can still name every dog I've ever shared by house with and I loved them all! They all gave me something no one else can.

    Pam...Thanks. 20 years is a wonderful gift. We haven't made it past 18 years, so far. We have had one cat and one dog make it to or nearly to 18. All I can console myself with when it's their time is that I know I gave them the best life I could and they were never not loved for a moment from the day I met them and neither was I.

  18. I feel your pain! Dogs love us unconditionally; and they can teach us humans a thing us two about that!

  19. @Eccentricity...He was a good boy and a great first love.

    @beachlover...Ain't that the truth? <3


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