To My Little One

Posted: November 22, 2010 in Words In Progress


Tanya died today. There was something in the air all of last evening that told me something bad was yet to come. When my mum called out of the blue, I knew there was truth in my intuition. In a way, maybe this was a good thing. She had been sick since the day we brought her home; always one thing or the other, never at peace with herself. On some days, we’d be sure to keep it down if we found she had fallen asleep. On most days, she was a restless little child, too nervous to welcome a guest, too sick to play with her siblings.
When she first came to us, my mum was her haven from the world outside. A raggedy, lost, lonely, little wonder, we found her whimpering under a car in the street. She was barely a month old and ridden with mange. The plan was to keep her for a few days until we could find someone to adopt her. Then one evening while we were sitting outside in the front porch, my mum carefully placed her on the compound wall just so she could look over at the road outside. We couldn’t have turned for more than a few seconds when she jumped and landed on all fours, on the inside of the wall, thank God. She yelped and immediately looked up at mum. I knew then that the latest member of our family had arrived. In typical fashion, our mum picked her up and held her close. “You’re not going anywhere,”she said. “You’re going to stay her with me, okay?” Tanya turned and licked Ma’s nose. I guess that was her way of saying “Let’s do this!”
She hardly ever got better. When my oldest, Patches, was unwell and getting all of our attention, we neglected to notice that she had been scratching herself unusually more often. After a few weeks, we were horrified to see that her misery had been so bad that she had scratched her cornea to blindness. Our vet (and saviour on so many accounts) was able to save the eye and Ma was careful to make sure that it never happened again.
It isn’t often you see a skinny, quite grotesque-looking little mutt getting an oil massage. My mum really knows ho to take care of her children – the one with two legs and all of her other four-legged ones. I remember Tanya looking up at me when I went to India, waiting to be petted but ready to take a chunk out of me if I got close. With the little eyesight she had, she eventually recognized me though. In the two years that I hadn’t been home, she’d lost every one of her teeth as well. Still, when Ma spoke to her or cuddled her, you knew she was smiling. Her entire body sent the message across.
I will never forget that little brown bundle of joy, holding onto her own paw, huddled up, at the end of Ma’s bed. She may not have had 20:20 vision and she may have greeted you more with the stench of her presence than a wag of her tail, but Tanya was an intelligent girl who knew how to get her blanket over herself using her nose and her forepaws. All the while she lived she suffered, but of all the memories I have of her, not once do I remember her complaining. Not a sound, just the quiet rhythm of a difficult breath. She may not have been the most beautiful dog I have known, but it was her gentle soul that made her a part of our family and my mum’s heart.

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Comments
  1. swapna says:

    >:(Hope her soul rests in peace… She'll be fine Sam… Touching!!!

  2. rurero says:

    >I am so sorry to hear that. She looked a lot like my kids dog that died just recently at age 15. May she rest in peace.

  3. neha says:

    >hey dada… cheer up… b happy tanya didnt suffer more… im sure she is proud to hv such a beautiful family….

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