The Best Man in My Life

What a rollercoaster ride this blogging business is!  Having dived in headfirst last week, I got to Monday and suddenly realized a few things:

–       I have to do this every week

–       I have no idea what to say to the thousand (Twitter) voices in my head

–       I need to get out of bed earlier!

Then I saw Coleen Patrick’s new blog and nearly had a tear.  Leaning into the Leap is a beautiful and inspiring lesson about the things we don’t want to do (or think we can’t), and the lessons we can learn from dogs.  It was so simple, and so profound, that I simply had to share it – here, on Twitter – everywhere.

On an entirely different note, it’s the little things that keep us going, right?  The biggest buzz for a newbie is getting a Like on your page within half on hour of putting it out there!

Ellayourbella was my first Like!  I’ve seen her around a few times now, and have no idea how she finds us newbie’s, but the best surprise of all was her blog.  An uncensored, wicked-funny romp through “My Discarded Men” – with some solid advice for single women (and men) on the dating scene (did I mention Uncensored?).

Anyway, for very different reasons, this blog is dedicated to Coleen and Ella – for keeping me going 🙂

Relationships are funny things.  The superficial ones you always know you have to work at and so, in an odd way, you don’t take them for granted.  But then there are those other ones that stick around, so long a forgotten limb – until they’re (nearly) gone.

You’d think sixteen years might make me pay attention.  But next thing I’m sitting in the therapist’s chair and she states, as if it’s nothing, “Well, he’s probably the most consistent relationship in your life up until now!”

And that was the moment that I woke up to the fact that the best man in my life was of the fur persuasion!

Meet Pepi

I met Pepi when I was eighteen years old.  As is usually the case with these things, it wasn’t like I went looking for him.  It was my flatmate at the time who wanted a man pup – but when I saw his brother, it was love at first sight.

I didn’t realize then that he was probably too young to be brought home, so little surprise now that he has a Mommy complex.

But who could blame me?  The morning after the first night – he loved me more, not less!  Before long, he was the only one with a toe fetish that was impossible to resist 🙂

When I think about it now, he has always had a lot going for him on the man stakes:

–       easy to clean up after

–       relentlessly positive and chirpy

–       fiercely loyal and protective of his girl

–       able to be physically controlled restrained in volatile situations of his own making

And that’s not all.

He always notices my sense of style!  The day I shaved off all my hair, he was particularly incensed.  Whether it was because he didn’t like it, or didn’t recognize me, either way his outrage was well founded, showing he’s a man of taste.

But best of all he loves me most in my daggiest of states (Aussie slang for ‘unfashionable, untidy and dirty’).  Okay, that is probably self-serving on his part, as it means (luckily for the rest of the world) that I’m not leaving home.  Still, it’s nice to be loved for who you are.

Which brings me to the present and the reason for my visit to the Doc.  I can’t leave home anymore.  The last time I did, after four days away, he had started on his own Advanced Vetcare Directive of Nil by Mouth.

The time before that, when I left him for a day with a friend at a retirement village, he cried so hard all day the neighbours worried he’d be next.

It turns out sweet sixteen is not so sweet for the little fella, especially when I’m not around.

I’m left with two choices.  One is – forever.  The other is – ‘inconvenient’, but it is a second chance.

It requires medication for his mind, pain relief for his bones, a walk every day before breakfast, home cooked meals and treats and Me – and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

I think about the times I lived alone with him, huddled in front of a bar heater in the gloomy Melbourne winter, watching Xena while he gnawed my shoe.  He was there.  He was always there.  And once he’s gone, he’s gone.  At least now he has no doubt that he’s the Best Man in My Life.

What about you?  Do you have loved ones of the fur persuasion?  Do they know they’re loved?  What would you do if you had a second chance?


  1. lynnkelleyauthor says

    Another awesome post, Alarna. You’re right, Coleen’s blog post last week was perfect for you! I loved her post, too. Aw, Pepi has been with you a long time. I’m sorry the poor little fella is suffering. Good thing he has you. We had four dogs before we had to move out of our house a few months ago and into an apartment. Thankfully, we’re allowed to have two dogs here. One of the four dogs was our son’s, and he was able to take him back (for now). Our other dog, Maverick, too sad to talk about. Kills me every time I think about him.

    Hugs to you and Pepi.

    • says

      Wow, Lynn, four dogs is no joke. Sorry to hear about Maverick – how they break your heart… Pepi is the last of four animals I had at one time and, sorry to say, the others didn’t fare quite as well. Hugs back to you 🙂

  2. Coleen Patrick says

    I keep telling my husband that we will probably be getting a dog when the kids leave for college 🙂 They have fur allergies so we’ve had fish and parakeets instead, but once my kids move out I think I might need another little being to take care of (or take care of me!). I know that is a special bond–so hugs to you and Pepi.
    And thank you for the big lift this morning–what a nice surprise. 🙂 Thank you!!

    • says

      Hey Coleen, you’re very welcome! The little beings certainly fill up the world a lot more than you’d expect, as I’m sure parakeets do as well. As for taking care of you – they take their very seriously, so highly recommended 🙂

  3. says

    Aw… You cannot go wrong with dogs, in life or blog posts. 🙂 I’m pretty sure my 90 pound bull dog, Zoe, knows how much she means to me. Even so, I’ll keep trying harder!

    • says

      Hi August! Thanks for coming by my blog 🙂 I figure the same rule applies with dogs as with children – there’s no such thing as perfect parenting. But as long as they know they’re loved, that’s the most important thing 🙂

    • says

      Thanks so much for coming here! The post you mentioned is actually what drew me to your site – sometimes your job must be so heartbreaking. And these little fella’s are so intense about everything…it’s impossible not to love them 🙂

  4. says

    Ohmygosh Pepi is so cute 🙂 My dog turns 9 this year and I just lose it when someone calls him “old”. My brother’s taken to calling him “shabby”. Ouch. To which I say, he’s “well worn” but that just shows he’s well loved right? Kinda like a stuffed animal a child carries around all over? 😉 He’s definitely one of my best friends and my soul dog. Looks like you found your soul dog too!

    • says

      LOL! Yes! Pepi looks like he has seams and I tell him all the time his stuffing is coming out 🙂 Family can be somewhat – indelicate – at times. Every few months mine ask me if he’s still around. So glad you came by & hugs to your soul dog 🙂

  5. says

    I thought your story about your love of Pepi was wonderful. I [my family too] went through the same thing with our cat. She was fantastic and we worried about her whenever we went anywhere. She passed away when she was 18 and 3 years later we got our Chihuahua; who has many of the same traits. They are definitely one person dogs and very attentive. My Chi loves my family but they say she waits in stasis until I come home. Enjoy him as long as you can. It is a lovely love story.

    • says

      Wow, 18 years is a ripe old age – she must have been a well loved cat. No animal can ever be replaced, but I do think Chi’s have a special thing you only get when you have one 🙂 Thanks for coming by and glad you enjoyed my little love story!

  6. Food Stories says

    I have enjoyed your site so I’ve nominated you for the Illuminating Blogger Award for illuminating, informative blog content. You can check out the details at my site … … Hope you’re having a great day

    • says

      Hi CJ, I really appreciate your thoughtfulness in nominating me for this award. As discussed by email, after much consideration, I feel I must respectfully decline. This is purely a personal preference, as I am more comfortable to acknowledge other people in a spontaneous manner (apart from that fact that I am already struggling to keep up with my social media commitments!). A very eloquent post by Live. Grow. Nourish. Create says it much better than I. Many thanks to you for your kind gesture, and for your understanding… 🙂

  7. Andrea says

    I am trying to catch up on all your wonderful words, blogs, whatever. This story about “The Best Man In My Life”… I cried at the relationship you & Pepi had & will always have… you are so wonderful!

    love, your rain


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