A little more than a year ago I moved back to Massachusetts to live with my parents and finish up my writing degree. I was excited to come home and reunite with old friends and family, but more than anything else I was excited to come back and spend some time with Patty.

PattyPatty was our family’s Siberian Husky. I was never really a dog person. We always had cats. We still have a cat. The idea of a dog was something I never really considered but it felt like she was a missing piece of the family the moment she entered the house.

The first few months after moving from Albuquerque back to Cape Cod were like the first few minutes of a movie: We laughed, we played and I loved everything about being back home. It felt like being home, again. I hadn’t had that feeling in awhile. I had visited a few times throughout my life living in Albuquerque. I’d come back for a couple of days, a week, a month; but it never felt anything more than being inserted into some sort of paradox. A world where I didn’t quite belong anymore. In those first few months of being back it felt like being home again. I’ll always remember that.

And of course the story goes, Patty got sick. She developed this obstruction in her stomach and she couldn’t eat anything. For a period of time there she was literally just starving and we couldn’t do anything about it. It was obvious we had to put her down.

Today’s prompt made me compare last year and this year. The missing component is Patty. Last year, at this time, it just felt like everything was so warm and loving. Now, I’m just cold.

I never expected that.


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