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28

Jan

Woman’s Best Friend

Alright, I’ll be the first to admit that it wasn’t exactly love at first sight. My first glimpse of her and I was sure that she was glaring at me, judging me. From just a photo I could feel her eyes cutting into me and laughing at the mere idea that I, someone so unworthy, could ever own something so stunning.

This breed is incredibly stubborn and while they have every intention of pleasing their owner, their own agenda will usually take the lead. Beautiful from head to toe she tends to draw attention and adoration but it is rare for her to bond quickly and even more rare to bond with multiple people. She is loyal and prefers to run with a pack but beware because she will take off fast and far at the drop of a hat. If she finds something that captures her interest she may never return. Her piercing eyes will leave you no choice but to forgive the damage she is bound to cause and will inevitably lead you to forgive the mistakes she will make in the early stages of your bonding. Once she has accepted you and you have connected, she will be yours for the remainder of her life; even if you occasionally forget to fill her water bowl and refuse to pull yet another bone or ball out from under the couch.

While it may resemble my therapist’s opinion of me, it is actually a description of my 25th birthday gift. I currently am the owner of a Siberian Husky version of myself. In voicing my desire for a furry companion I mentioned words like petite, loving, cuddly, obedient and I even sent a list of preferred breeds. I would have never admitted this then, because how could I know? The gift giver knew me more than I knew myself.

When I first met her all I could think of was how big she was bound to get. I had visions of her eating my sofa, destroying my shoes, biting every exposed part of my body and urinating on every inch of my hard wood floors. I did not even consider the variety of foods, small animals and dirty napkins that would have to be wrestled from her determined jaw over the next months. I won’t even tell you about the hallway explosion of 2010 but after that, I knew instantly that we would need time to understand and become accustomed to each other. I reached for her and attempted our first embrace and she stumbled back in fear and uncertainty. Why wouldn’t she? We did not know each other and we needed much more familiarity before there would be any trust or loyalty.

My mornings became devoted to her, I rushed home from work every day and attempted to form a routine, a sign that she could rely on me. I fed her from my hands to show that while they scold, they also make sure she has what she needs. I gave her first, second, and third baths before I realized that the amount of shedding between the both of us would forever destroy our plumbing. I had patience when the toys she adored a week before, sat idly in the middle of the floor as she displayed her preference for socks. Black socks, short socks, anything that had been on feet, she would go to extreme measures to find and conquer! Every day she grew more and more and each neighbor would comment on just how enormous she would be. I silently glared at the gift giver and for days I questioned if we had made the error of all errors. He only grinned back at me with either full confidence of future success or to hide the fear of impending doom.

When I decided to take Sasha with me to Paris it was not entirely for selfish reasons. It made sense for me, I was the one owner of two who had all of the time in the world, to work on training her and giving her consistency. The fact that she makes a wonderful cuddling companion or that our morning run routine is giving me the abs I’ve always dreamed of - those are just added bonuses. After five months together, let me tell you what I did not foresee the day that we met. I did not think that I would be trembling and fighting back tears for three hours while I roamed the streets of Paris looking for her. I never imagined that she would understand my sadness and react by cuddling against me and licking every tear that fell. I never expected that I would see every corner, bridge, church and monument in Paris because I found someone who enjoyed running and exploring as much as I do. It never crossed my mind that despite our first encounter and impression that I would grow to adore this petite, loving, cuddly and obedient ball of fur.

While it wasn’t a match made in heaven right from the start, we have been patient with each other. She genuinely appears apologetic after destroying couch cushions, though I can see she is slightly pleased with the amount of feathers and foam that surround her. I have learned when she wants to play, when she wants to cuddle and when she just needs to run away. Though it has not always been easy, I love her. We know each other and we are loyal to one another. I am fully aware of the growing that she has left to do but I also know that with time, patience, forgiveness and a little understanding - she is perfect for me.