"The pain of parting is nothing to the joy of meeting again."
One day last week, after I had completed our usual parting routine,
my second-born took Gracie upstairs and let her watch out the window
as I drove away.
Sweet little Gracie has a hard time with goodbyes.
Which is understandable given that she passed through four homes in the first two and a half years of her life. By the time she arrived on our doorstep last July, my poor pup became quite unhinged when I went out, running in distress through the house as she frantically searched for me, whimpering and crying till I returned.
After the first couple days, we mapped out a different strategy.
"Baby, I gotta go."
These are the magic words that now signal to Gracie that I'm going out and *sigh* she's not invited.
As soon as she hears me say that phrase in the mournful, exaggerated tone that I always use, she runs to the family room, hops up on her favorite couch, and settles herself in for the wait, her head comfortably slung across the arm, her eyes already half closed.. After collecting my bag and car keys, and sweeping the kitchen clear of anything remotely resembling food, because she will eat anything that isn't nailed down, I kiss her on the head and head out the garage door.
Always the garage door.
And when I come home, I always re-enter the house through the self-same garage door, which opens into the laundry room. And there I almost always find my devoted dog, sleeping on the rug where she knows I am almost guaranteed to trip over her when I come back.
We have our reunions right there in front of the dryer, with as much tail wagging and body wiggling and tongue lapping as Odysseus's dog most likely offered up on his master's return from the Trojan War.
Gracie is always beside herself to have me back home.
And the pain of parting is indeed nothing to the joy of meeting again.