She's okay, but something has been lost. I'm hoping it's temporary.
11:15 pm. Last call. I let her out as usual, and about 10 minutes later go to bring her in as usual. She's been such a good girl for so long
about coming right up the back porch steps when I open the gate that I thought nothing of doing this last night. Open gate. Belly walks up the steps and into the house. Except last night. I open the gate. She walks toward the steps and stops. Deadset on something. And takes off. My instant reaction is anger. Disgust. Not this again
. I put on different shoes, grab the leash, put the front porch light on, and begin walking the streets to try to find her. My assumption at first is that she'll come right back.God I'm so sick of this.
Fifteen minutes later I'm beginning to get worried. I call S., who has to work in the morning and usually gets up at 5:30. It's 11:30 by now. He comes right away. While he's on his way, I see a kid on the street who asks if I'm looking for a big black dog. Uh, yeah. I saw her standing on a porch on Oakland Street a little while ago, he tells me. And all I can think at this point is that she's done chasing the critters and is trying to find her home. Her front porch. And I start crying as I walk toward Oakland, a very busy street. The whole time I'm looking for her I'm thinking, I love this dog too much. I shouldn't love her so much.
S. shows up, we drive around a bit, we walk the neighborhood separately a bit, we get back in the car. All of this takes about a half hour. When we get back in the car the second time, I'm crying for real. It's so dark out and she's so black. We're driving real
slow up a one-way street when I realize there's a cop behind us. I pull over and wave him down, tell him we're looking for our dog. I tell him her name and he says he'll keep an eye out for her. We keep driving. A few minutes later we're turning onto my street when S. thinks he hears her barking. I look toward the house and see her bookin' it into our driveway. I pull into the driveway, relieved, sick to my stomach, angry. But mostly relieved to see that face.
Not two seconds later, the cop car pulls up in front of the house to check if we got her all right. Apparently, the cop had seen her running, called her name, and that's when she booked it into her driveway. Belly, it seems, was chased home by the Bloomington Police.
This is a story that could be made funny, could be compared to the time I was brought home by the police when I was 15 for stealing plastic flowers. I like the idea of Belly hearing that the cops were after her and running home to tell Mommy she was sorry. This is a story I contemplated not telling on the blog because you've heard it all before.
But earlier this afternoon as I was walking her, I kept thinking about what was going through my mind last night. I love this dog too much
. Can you love a dog too much? Am I getting mad at myself for letting this creature do this to me again? I lost a lot of trust in this dog last night. But there's more to it than that. I feel like I'm still grieving. I walk the same streets with her today that I walked last night in my pajamas and it just feels different somehow. My heart hurts.
Just Friday night I was saying to my friends what a good dog Annabelle has turned into. She's loyal, she's funny, she's smart, she's mischievous, and she's got loads of personality. She milks her best pathetic look every day. And I know that her running off last night doesn't make her a bad dog. It's her hunting instinct. But I don't know how many more times I can take this. I'm just not that strong.
It'd be so much easier if I could just stop loving her so much.